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Pennsylvania BMX Track History  RSS Feed

#51 2008-11-28 9:01pm

BDiddy
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Registered: 2008-11-22
Posts: 3

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Poplar Neck did indeed have the Huge starting hill which went into a banked 90 degree right hander.  The anouncer tower was right at the bottom of the hill.

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#52 2008-12-11 9:25pm

ziggy
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Registered: 2008-12-11
Posts: 6

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Hey Brian, How bout some love for ZIGGY :}  And yes I rember Donald Grianger and family, I think your brother
and sister raced. Iam not sure why but I googled my name { Troy ziegler} and bmx and results from Southpark in 1999
came up. I actually started racing again in 1996 to about 2000 in the cruiser class and had some fun. If you look it
up, another name below me is in Donalds age class ,,,Mike Althouse,,,, he was still fast and from what I remember wore
a black jersey in the 80's and did in 2000.  One more track to add in PA was a short lived downhill at a campgroud
called Hickory Run.  Another old name that raced and I see is Todd Ritzman .  Donald you are about 2-3 years
older then me but your friggin class was tough, I remember lots of battles. Cant remember to many names, Harry Hall
comes to mind. Who are some more ?

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#53 2008-12-12 8:53pm

BDiddy
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Registered: 2008-11-22
Posts: 3

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Troy man sorry.  I've recently reconnected w/ Parr and your name has come up.  Your Race Inc. was a sweet ride.  What were those couple guys names from West Lawn?  Also "Plugger" that Harry hung out with? 

I rember Todd Ritzman as well.  My wife and his sister, Bethany, who also raced, are friends.  Some other names are coming to mind. Dave Oley, Rob Oley, Chris Fissel and Lester Jones.  The bug has now definitely hit, I just had an '83 Predator delivered from an ebay purchase!

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#54 2008-12-17 6:56pm

ziggy
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Registered: 2008-12-11
Posts: 6

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

I thought of 2 more tracks, When I raced motorcross I remember there was a track at Sleepy Hollow BMX in Fredericksburg and I remember
racing a indoor national, at Harrisburg Farm show complex. Not sure if they still do it when they have motorama in the winter. Someone already
posted King of Prussia indoor, man was it freakin cold in that building. Had some cool wooden ramps and a big step up. No berms so
lots of squelling tires 'cause you would stretch your leg out {motocross style} to block anyone from passing on the inside and they would lock
up the rear.
Hey BDiddy, lets hook up and chat on the phone. Todd has my cell#.

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#55 2009-03-08 1:49pm

plainsbikesouth
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From: Wilkes-Barre, PA
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Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Couple more to add:

The track outside of Pine Grove, PA (Wanna say it was called Sweet Valley BMX?)
Hickory Ridge BMX, outside of Honesdale, PA (91-92 I think?)

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#56 2009-03-26 3:32pm

tbucket4timmy
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Registered: 2009-03-22
Posts: 4

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

My name is Timmy-I used to race at North Park-it opened in 1976. I first had a Mongoose Motomag and since it was so heavy,I got smoked. So I later went to Wheels Unlimited in Squirrel Hill and bought a red CYC Stormer with an Addicks sprocket and red Tuff 2's. I got smoked again. But the track was cool-it had a big banked first turn and a four-foot dropoff,as well as a big dirt ramp in the middle between two lanes for a jumping contest. You could also enter what was called an "Enduro" event which went off the main track-into the woods-then back again,for just one lap.But that wore everyone out!! Back in the sport's beginning,the tracks we raced on were more like motorcycle motocross tracks-they usually went along with the surrounding terrain. So they were a little more "gnarly" and had bigger jumps,and features unique to that particular track. Today's tracks are too mild,in my opinion.Too manicured and perfect.But at least kids still ride and race-it beats the hell out of soccer...........

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#57 2009-04-26 4:59pm

dremel
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Registered: 2008-04-05
Posts: 14

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Picture from Blawnox. My younger brother in the jumping contest.

http://i286.photobucket.com/albums/ll115/dremel1140/blawnox.jpg


Some random shots from Noth Park around 1977 I think. i have the orange helmet in the bottom picture. Terrible start. this may have been the first NBL national at NP.

http://i286.photobucket.com/albums/ll115/dremel1140/04-26-2009080803PM.jpg

Last edited by dremel (2009-04-26 5:11pm)

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#58 2009-05-09 2:10pm

monkee363
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From: Connellsville, PA
Registered: 2009-05-09
Posts: 3598

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

I started at Delmont BMX in May of 1986 and raced until the end of 1997. One correction I need to make to your list of tracks in western pennsylvania is your Monmouth track in Norvelt. Actually the town is called Mammoth. The track was known as Mammoth Park BMX. It opened in April of 1991 and closed in October of 1997. I opened and ran this track for it's entire exsistence along with my dad, mom, and brother. It was sanctioned by the great ABA.smile


Would you carry a razor, just in case of depression?

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#59 2009-06-04 7:38am

jeffreyc
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From: Switzerland
Registered: 2008-07-14
Posts: 6

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Dremel, any idea what year your brother is jumping at Blawnox? I raced there a few times untill they closed it down. I think they raced every other sunday and it always seem to rain on race day.sad

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#60 2009-06-04 8:08am

Mazzzze
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From: Pittsburgh, PA
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Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

That's cool.  I used go out North Park & race a little bit & hang out all the time.  Early to mid 80's with my Hutch Pro Racer.  Does anyone go to South Park regularly?  Haven't been there in quite sometime. It's only about 30 minutes away tops.  big_smile

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#61 2009-06-04 8:15am

tigachunglee
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From: Harrisburg, PA
Registered: 2007-12-26
Posts: 202
Bikes: 19

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

I did not see DILLSBURG? HAHA one of my local tracks along with the Harrisburg FARM SHOW. The Dillsburg track was held at Kings Camp Church grounds...Great claases and riders Steve and Mike Mansfield (MY FELLOW NATIONL PRO teammates), Carl Gurber, Kuhn Brothers, Eric Rhul, my class with David dennis, scott and randy blumenstock. Wow..great days. THE TRACK ACTUALLY CHANGED TWICE WITH THE LAYOUT. It was run by Dave Otabahn. Not sure of the spelling, but it was a great 3 day a week track.

Cheers Bill Stonebraker PA-1 ( MY NAME I USED BACK THEN)


I am looking for : NATIONAL PROS( AND PARTS), BANDITOS (AND PARTS), GALINDO BARS, CAM PLATES ARE NEEDED. Land of chocolates...Hershey Pa

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#62 2009-11-01 4:25pm

freedo
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Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

monroeton pa bike track link http://www.rockysbikeshop.com/index.html they also have a pretty nice skatepark there too


out with the new in with the old!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! smile
mongoose decade guru, hit me up with any questions you may have
R.I.P  Autumn Pasquale. May she rest in Peace!
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#63 2009-11-01 4:31pm

brian84corvette
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From: Ft Lauterdale, FL
Registered: 2008-11-01
Posts: 848
Bikes: 9

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

I used to ride dirt trails in PA back in 1990 thur 1993
lived in a town called sellersville.   
we had a fiew good sets of trails dug localy.    realley liked the trails by the firehouse off main st.
was realley sad when they got bulldozed


how many of yall have been to the quakertown q mart and raced slot cars there ?

Last edited by brian84corvette (2009-11-01 4:32pm)


Bass adicted - car stereo crazy - flatlanding any bike with pegs
hittin switches in the old school low low goin down the block
rollin on Dz  and blastin my musics

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#64 2009-11-05 5:15pm

RL-20II Guy
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Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

I raced at Westmoreland Park in Western PA.  Track looks pretty much the same as it did in the late 80's, early 90's....

Web Site:  http://www.nauticom.net/www/markim/schedule.htm

Westmoreland BMX is located in Apollo PA, just North of Pittsburgh PA. 20 minutes from exit 6 on the PA Turnpike. From Turnpike Exit 6, take the right turn ramp on Rt. 22 towards Murrysville.
At 1.5 miles take the right turn ramp for Rt 286, Golden Mile Highway. At
5.1 miles Rt. 286 veers off to the right and the road you are on turns into Rt
380 (4-lane). Stay on Rt 380. After traveling 5.9 miles, take the
right-sided exit ramp for Rt 66, Apollo/Greensburg. Make a right at the bottom of the
ramp. At 1.7 miles, the road Y's - Rt. 66 to the right and Rt. 356 to the
left. Take Rt. 356 (left) and travel 1.7 miles. Take a sharp left at the
Municipal Water Authority (look for BMX signs). At red light, make a right. Travel
straight for 1 mile - see lake on the left. Turn right into the park and
follow signs 0.9 miles to the right hand turn into the BMX track.

http://www.knt2000sCustoms.com/vintage/NorthmorelandPark001.jpg

Last edited by RL-20II Guy (2009-11-14 2:12pm)


"Just don't look...see. Nothing is, as it appears..." - paraphrased C. O'Neal

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#65 2009-11-05 5:21pm

RL-20II Guy
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Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Anyone also remember the one BMX track in the same area of Northmoreland park..........called something like, "Markle" or, "Marckel"....something like that. 

It was a circle track around a sewage pond.  I also drown on my Schwinn banana seat bike.  I wreck into the pond and went under the water and my leg was caught under the seat and I was pinned. My Dad say me go in, and came to save me. 

I was not a racer at the time, my brother was.  I was just riding around the track...

Last edited by RL-20II Guy (2009-11-05 5:23pm)


"Just don't look...see. Nothing is, as it appears..." - paraphrased C. O'Neal

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#66 2009-11-14 1:30pm

dremel
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Registered: 2008-04-05
Posts: 14

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Jeff,

Been away from the site for awhile. I think the Blawnox picyure is either 75 or 76. To long ago.

Mazzee,

I go out South Park. I live about 20 minutes away. I don't go every week but a couple times a month..

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#67 2009-11-14 2:08pm

RL-20II Guy
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Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

I remember south park was like "Hell Track", if you never raced there and it was the first time.


"Just don't look...see. Nothing is, as it appears..." - paraphrased C. O'Neal

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#68 2009-11-14 5:43pm

dremel
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Registered: 2008-04-05
Posts: 14

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

It still is like "hell"  track for me. LOL.

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#69 2010-08-20 5:10pm

jreising326
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Registered: 2010-08-20
Posts: 11

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

I grew up in Wilkes-Barre and was into BMX just before the first tracks opened.  Sicklers opened Rocky Ledge first, I would say in 1978 and it may have been NBA sanctioned at first, then ABA for 79 and 80 before changing to NBL.  Tom Sutton opened up the Lehman track which was ABA around 1981 and I think it was called Lehman BMX at the Lehman fairgrounds.

I knew Kevin Czalkaski when he started at Bryants, who we were already pestering Josh Bryant to start a BMX team like Sicklers had.  Our rough around the edges gang eventually became Kevin's first BMX team.  Kevin would drive us around in his AMC Hornet, and I still remember the air assist power steering would "breath" (or was it weeze) it's way around the town.  I started racing on a peace of junk Murray from Sears for $30.

Tom Jones Jr. at Sicklers was also a great guy, and so was Mr. Sickler.  I only raced a few years, and moved on to MX in 82 or so, but those early BMX years in NE PA are some great memories.

Rgds,

Joe

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#70 2010-08-20 11:59pm

jreising326
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Registered: 2010-08-20
Posts: 11

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

I should also add that Rocky Ledge was in Courtdale, not Nanticoke.  Kevin also ran a track in Barney Farms in Wilkes-Barre around 82 - 85 before getting involved with Cedar BMX as best I can recall....  They put a housing development in Barney Farms and I just visited the site of Rocky Ledge last month and a private residence now sits there.

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#71 2010-08-23 4:32am

Plainsbike
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Registered: 2010-08-23
Posts: 1

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Hey Jreising326...Haven't seen you since you crawled out of the back of that old Hornet for the last time years ago!  Nice to see you and hope you are doing well.  As you stated, you along with Steve, John,,were my first ever BMX team back in '79.

For those interested, here is some more history on the tracks at least in this area of the state, the Northeast section and surrounding areas.  I apologize if this has been covered already but maybe I can fill in some gaps for all of you.

The first ever BMX track in this area was Rocky Ridge BMX in Courtdale which opened in 1975 under the old NBA Sanction.  Later renamed to Rocky Ledge, it switched over to the ABA and then went NBL in it's final few years in operation.  I believe it closed down in and around '84,

Up in Lehman off of Rt 118 was the Lehman BMX Track, again opened under the NBA in 1980 and switched to ABA after then track operator from Stormstown, Pa...Clayton John, convinced him to switch to the ABA.  Closed in 1982.

Then we have the Barney Farms Track in South Wilkes- Barre, not a bad track, opened in 1982 by the Zoransky's but since the city already had that area tagged for housing it didn't last long.  Closed in 1985. ABA

Hickory Ridge BMX off of Rt 191 near Honsedale, opened in 1990, closed shortly thereafter. re-opened for a bit, closed again and fades into history. ABA.

I'm not sure if these two tracks are the same, but there was a track near Stroudsburg called "Black Track".  I actually found it years ago but there was a sign there that said "BMX America", so..it may be one in the same.  Early Prehistoric BMX by the looks of it and I think it was gone by the early '80's.

Wellsboro, out by Rt 6...Wellsboro BMX, ABA..ran just a few races in the Fall of '84, closed shortly afterward.

Of course we have Stormstown, State College area ran by retired ABA President Clayton John.  Clayton did such a great job at the 1981 Redline Summer Tour that then President Merle Meninga (Sp) asked him to help out the ABA.  Clayton was in the process of relocating his bike shop (Still in business in State College under a different name) to the warmer climate, so..he decided to help out until he found a new shop location.  Lol..the rest is history there.
  Stormstown ran a few years after he left and also had an affiliate track in Dillsburg, below Harrisburg.  Both finally closed in and around '85.

Someone mentioned Pine Grove, better known as "the Groove" to those that made the weekly Sunday trip down there.  A one lane track that had more grass on it than around it..laughable by today's standards but it was still just a place to have fun.  Closed down not all that long ago, '92 I think when the track management took over the old at that time closed down track in Lebanon.

Phoenixville, near Philly.  Run by a shyster..I still have riders waiting for the TV's she promised as first place prizes for a Redline Cup(Now Gold Cup) qualifier.  Was NBL, went ABA...had things so messed up Clayton had to go out there many times to unravel the mess she made of things. Closed around '90ish.

There are more I'm sure I'm missing and as I remember them I'll put them up.  I do know of a few by Allentown, but I can't recall the names or exact locations.

I've saved the best for last as the track is still in operation and I am proud to have been a part of it.  Cedar BMX Park, which just hosted the ABA Quaker State National a few weeks ago, near Clarks Summit...opened in 1981, still there, been ABA since day one, opened by Dave Johns of Cedar Bike Shop who ran it from '81 to June of '85 when I took it over.  I ran it from '85 to 2003, during that time I also became involved with the ABA first as East Coast Representative and later National Race Announcer for them.  A lot of time and work over the years finally took it's toll (mainly "little leauge" type parents) and it was time for me to go.  I was however quite shocked last year when right before he retired Clayton announced his "Track Operator Hall of Fame" at the Grands which I was inducted into.

Cedar is now run by Rob Vargo and has taken the track to the next level with many new features and improvements and will celebrate it's 30th anniversary next year.  Not too many tracks can hold a candle to Cedar.

I have a list of indoors also that I either ran or was involved in, but this is long enough for now.

Kevin at Plains Bike
facebook.com/plains bike shop

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#72 2011-01-11 7:52pm

Racer
Pro MemberPhilly Cheese Steak
From: Orange County, CA
Registered: 2005-05-27
Posts: 4212
Bikes: 22

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Thanks for the input Kevin. Blacktrack opened for sure in 1978 as I raced it that year. It was non sanctioned. In 79 they were NBL but switched to ABA at the very last minute at seasons end.
It was right on Rt 33 I think. I last visited the site around 89 and everything was still there but under weeds and the tower looked bad so clearly it handnt been used in years. The black top skate park on the site that gave the track its name, was also gone.
I tried to find it on Google Maps but just couldnt for certain, but it was at a bend in the road , marked by a run down old house.
I bet the track is still there.

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#73 2011-02-19 11:36am

monkee363
Pro Member
From: Connellsville, PA
Registered: 2009-05-09
Posts: 3598

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

Mammoth Park BMX, now. RIP. You can still see what's left of the track just above Mammth Lake....what a shame. http://maps.google.com/maps?q=mammoth+p … CBkQ8gEwAQ

Last edited by monkee363 (2012-01-08 7:33pm)


Would you carry a razor, just in case of depression?

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#74 2011-02-19 8:06pm

Racer
Pro MemberPhilly Cheese Steak
From: Orange County, CA
Registered: 2005-05-27
Posts: 4212
Bikes: 22

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

BTW Im pretty certain that Rocky Ledge wasnt ABA in 79.  I was PAs first ABA member (Penn-1#51 - they reserved top 50 for earned plates) and know for sure no PA tracks ran in 79. I was actually in first in the ABA points. (I was just novice) but actually traveled all the way to VA to race ABA. I had the 79 ABA Penn-1 number 1 plate locked till Blacktrack switched. Now mind you they didnt run ANY ABA races in 1979, they switched at seasons end to race ABA for 1980.
The ABA actually used a conversion chart and converted the Blacktrack racers NBL points to ABA!!! That was the only way they agreed to switch sanctions.
It cost me the only Number 1 plate I ever earned lol. I finished #6.
So I know Rocky Ledge may have turned or announced it went ABA in 79 but for sure didn't race ABA in 79.

I have I think an old 1980 flyer for area tracks (NY, PA, CT etc). It was a NBA flyer and listed Rocky Ledge I think. Crapola let me just go dig it out lol.

Ok it was 1980 NBA Poster but the track listed was Dallas "Tuff Trax". So Im not sure if Rocky Ledge was racing ABA in 1980 but it appears it wasnt racing NBA. Or perhaps Dallas was Rocky Ledge lol. I didnt race the Poconos area till Clarks Summit in 89.

Last edited by Racer (2011-02-19 8:10pm)

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#75 2011-02-27 6:27pm

monkee363
Pro Member
From: Connellsville, PA
Registered: 2009-05-09
Posts: 3598

Re: Pennsylvania BMX Track History

How about Mammoth Park Bmx?! What an awesome track!!!!yikes

Last edited by monkee363 (2012-01-08 7:34pm)


Would you carry a razor, just in case of depression?

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