Media Contact:  Judy Gower 724-853-7223 

May 16, 2004



                    Story Provided by Doc Lehman,  Lehman Motorsports


(May 16, 2004) This season one of the biggest dirt Late Model events east of the Mississippi River will undergo a make-over, a new look and a completely revitalized approach on a new weekend as the 16th Annual ‘New’ PITTSBURGHER will move to the fourth weekend of September with a new two-show, two-day program under the lights with sanctioning by the World of Outlaws Late Model Series (WoO LMS) at the Monster Half Mile known as Pittsburgh’s Pennsylvania Motor Speedway (PPMS). Two full, separate racing programs will now be held on Friday September 24 and Saturday September 25 with a Practice Day scheduled for Thursday September 23 with Sunday September 26 slated as a rain date for Saturday’s program. The events will pay $5,000 and $12,000 to win respectively.  

There were several factors that brought about the change in weekends, formats and sanctions. “As you know we have had a tremendous amount of changes in dirt track racing over the winter time that has a direct affect on our operation with the PITTSBURGHER in particular,” explained Ben Miley, Vice-President of Miley Motorsports which manages PPMS. “So with those changes we started working on this in February at Daytona talking with the sanctioning groups trying to determine which option would be the best for the PITTSBURGHER. It took awhile but we looked at it as an opportunity to maybe make some changes and maybe put a new spin on the thing and maybe revitalize it and reenergize it, and change has a way of doing that. Just like what we have seen with the sanctioning bodies. So, with all of that, we finally came up with what we think is the new PITTSBURGHER with a new date, new format and a new sanctioning body. It will be night racing but it will still be at the same place and we’re excited about it.” 

"The speculation about the Pittsburgher is finally over,” commented Judy Gower, General Business Manager of PPMS. “It’s a whole new deal this year, and the way I see it, the best part is the big change in the format.  Fans will see two complete shows, and both World of Outlaws events will be taking place at night. The fans and drivers have been clamoring for nighttime PITTSBURGHERS ever since the thrilling one that Timmy Hitt won in the wee hours after a long rain delay back in 1996.  What a race that one was. So now, their wait is over, and to make it even sweeter, they get not just one, but two races under the lights on the fast monster half mile!"  

After spending the last 13 years under the former STARS/Renegade sanction (the first two PITTSBURGHERs were unsanctioned), Miley Motorsports took a long hard look at the new options that were available to them this year in light of the many changes and additions of several sanctioning bodies. 

“We just looked at everyone, and we talked to Doug Bland of Xtreme and he was extremely gracious and we had several conversations about what our options where but probably one of the main things is format,” stated Miley. “There is no sanctioning body that exists that I am aware of that has the format of the PITTSBURGHER. 100 laps, fuel stop deals, so that was the first thing we had to decide, do we want to stay with it? Do we want to shorten it? There are a lot of options out there. We just felt that the World of Outlaws for the moment is the best fit for us and we’re going to go with it and see what happens.” 

In addition to the strong contingent of dirt Late Model teams that compete weekly at PPMS, the event regularly draws the top teams from tracks around a multi-state area as well as teams from competing sanctioning bodies. In addition, fans will also have the WoO LMS’ ‘Dirty Dozen’ in attendance, their core group of drivers that consists of Rick Aukland, Mike Balzano, Scott Bloomquist, Rick Eckert, Steve Francis, Chub Frank, Bart Hartman, Darrell Lanigan, Dale McDowell, Billy Moyer, Dan Schlieper and Clint Smith. 

“I just don’t know how it can’t be positive,” commented Miley. “I’m a competitor but I’m obviously a race fan as well and I know I’m excited about seeing it and what type of dirt event it could be. We’re very interested in having it be a very special event. And I like the fact it’s two nights, I really like that as a fan. That’s the idea of it. And the World of Outlaws hopefully is a large reason to try and reenergize this. We know what we have, we have that history, we know what our event is, we know what our car count is, the fan count, so this really to me puts it on the World of Outlaws to prove their worth to us, so that’s where we’re at with this.” 

"And we hope it will be one of their bigger events too. If you look at their schedule I think they might only have one other two-day show, and a two-day show is the biggest thing they do.” 

Additional information, news, ticket information and other announcements concerning the New PITTSBURGHER will be forthcoming in the weeks ahead. 

Past winners of the PITTSBURGHER are Scott Bloomquist (3 times), Davey Johnson (3 times), Tim Hitt (2 times), Rick Aukland (2 times), Chub Frank, Todd Andrews, Donnie Moran, Bob Wearing Jr, and ’03 winner Matt Urban. Only two drivers, Chub Frank and Mike Balzano, have made the starting field of every Pittsburgher. 

Pittsburgh's Pennsylvania Motor Speedway is located at the Noblestown exit of Route 22 west just minutes from downtown Pittsburgh, Weirton, WV, or Steubenville, OH. Additional information can be obtained by calling the business office during the week at 724-853-7223; on racedays at 724-695-0393, or 724-695-3363, or visit the PPMS web site at