2023 Tuscarora 50 at Port Royal Speedway

Logan Wagner To Drive Kreitz Racing No. 69K At Port Royal's Big Events

Logan Wagner To Drive Kreitz Racing No. 69K At Port Royal's Big Events

Five-time Port Royal Speedway track champion Logan Wagner has departed Zemco Racing to drive the Kreitz Racing No. 69K the rest of the season.

Jul 29, 2023 by Kyle McFadden
Logan Wagner To Drive Kreitz Racing No. 69K At Port Royal's Big Events

Logan Wagner has been hired to fill the seat of the Kreitz Racing No. 69K Sprint Car at Port Royal (Pa.) Speedway’s biggest events to finish the calendar year, including Sept. 7-9’s Tuscarora 50 at the half-mile oval, team owner Don Kreitz told FloRacing on Saturday.

Wagner, the reigning five-time Port Royal champion, will race eight of the 10 remaining 410 Sprint Car events at the Juniata County Fairgrounds, starting with Aug. 5’s weekly event.

He’ll also race Aug. 19’s $6,000-to-win Open Wheel Madness, Sept. 2’s Fair Week opener, the $56,000-to-win Tuscarora 50, and Oct. 6-7’s World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series doubleheader.

The 32-year-old Harrisonville, Pa., driver succeeds National Sprint Car Hall of Famer Lance Dewease, who was relieved from the No. 69K last Sunday after an eight-year, 71-win partnership with Kreitz and legendary crew chief Davey Brown.

Kreitz said that Wagner is in the car for Port Royal’s marquee events only and that he’ll “worry about (Williams) Grove after we get this going and make sure we get the car right for (Logan).”

Other than that, Kreitz is ready to begin a new partnership with another accomplished Pennsylvania driver in Wagner.

“I’ll put it like this: it’d be hard to find a better driver for Port Royal,” Kreitz said. “It does make it tougher to try and find a really good driver, say for next year, if it goes that far. I told him, we don’t know (what this could mean for the future). But if it goes like I think it should go, we’ll probably do it again next year; run him at Port Royal and figure something out for the Grove.

“I just think he’s the best driver for (Port Royal). We should have at least a chance to win every night we go there, whether we do win at all, or how we gel together. You never know how that’s going to work out. On paper, we should have a chance to be competitive every single night.”

Wagner’s 17 career Port Royal wins are tied for 17th all-time at the half-mile with Fred Rahmer, Randy Wolfe and Elmer Ruby. The biggest of those is his 2021 Tuscarora 50 triumph, where he outdueled Dewease late to win the $54,000 top prize.

One of Wagner's wins also came July 15 this year in the Zemco Racing No. 1Z, which scaled back to a part-time operation this year after reeling off five straight track titles with Wagner.

Wagner’s move to Kreitz Racing also means that ends his six-year partnership with Zemco Racing, who first hired the Pennsylvania driver in 2018.

“First and foremost, I have to thank Zemco for giving me the opportunity they have for the the last six years, to race a renowned car such as the Zemco car,” Wagner said. “Thank you to Tommy Carl for being the best crew chief I’ve worked with, giving me a competitive car night in and night out. It’s a tough decision. It’s not one that my family or I take lightly. I want to emphasize that. It’s never the right time to leave a car and go to another car.

“It’s ultimately the best decision for myself and my family moving forward, and my work, is to step away from Zemco and race with Kreitz.”

Wagner said he informed Zemco Racing of his departure from the team on Saturday and that “they were understanding.” He’ll carry primary partners, Saner Brothers and Mac McGee Motorsports, from the No. 1Z to the No. 69K.

“What it means to me, the Kreitz Racing car speaks for itself with the success it’s had with Lance, and even before that,” Wagner said. “I have to look at it as an opportunity. It’s a challenge. The pressure is there, but we if we can look at it as an opportunity for these next couple shows heading into the Tuscarora 50 at Port Royal, that’s how we’re going to look at it.

"And it’s an opportunity to work with Davey Brown and Don Kreitz. It’s going to be something new. It’s going to be something fun. When you’re thinking about cars and race cars in Pennsylvania, and factoring in my flying schedule (as a professional pilot), this just works. This just makes sense. That’s where the decision comes from.”

A large reason why Kreitz has selected Wagner to race exclusively at Port Royal is because he’ll only have one engine between now and the Tuscarora 50. The team started the year with four engines, but two of those engines are currently being rebuilt and a third belonged to Dewease.

Kreitz said “I might a Grove show between now and (the Tuscarora 50)” but “that’s doubtful.

“I probably won’t concentrate on the Grove until after the Tuscarora 50 because then I have some time — a month or whatever — until the Outlaw shows at Port (Royal),” Kreitz said. “And I’ll still have three weeks until the National Open to attack that.

“I don’t want to run a lot more than we have to until the Tuscarora 50. We’re supposed to be getting (an engine) back by then.”

There’s a chance Wagner could run Sept. 3’s Dirt Classic at Lincoln Speedway in Abbottstown, Pa., and Sept. 16’s $20,000-to-win Jim Nace Memorial National Open at Selinsgrove (Pa.) Speedway, too. But those races aren’t on their schedule at the moment.

“Lincoln’s (Dirt Classic) is going to be tough because that coincides with Port’s week, the Fair Week show on Saturday,” Kreitz said. “At this point, tentatively, we’ll probably run Logan on Saturday and in the Labor Day show on Monday will probably run Kassidy. And then we’ll get ready for the Tuscarora 50.”

Kreitz said he had roughly 75 drivers inquire about his available ride. He doesn’t know what their current eight-race deal could turn into as far as next year, but he’d like to see Wagner in the car beyond 2023.

“As long as this goes OK with Logan Wagner, I told him we’d do it next year, too,” Kreitz said. “That he could be in the car for Port Royal next year. That makes some complications in getting someone to run the Grove, but I have some ideas there. In weeks to come, we’ll figure out the Grove (deal).”