Andrew Vitek has driven cars across the country and around the world.
The aborigines of Wyoming County never drove at least the highly competitive East Northampton Street.
Vitek will add the East Northampton Street Course to the list of places he has raced in his professional career when he attends the Giants Despair Hillclimb on July 10-11.
First held in 1906 as part of Wilkes-Barre’s 100th anniversary, Hill Climb is one of the oldest running events in the world. The mile run begins at the bottom of the trail from the bottom of East Northampton Street near Route 309 to the top of the hill.
Originally from Falls but living in Philadelphia for 31 years, Vitek has been a semi-professional racing driver for 25 years, racing on multiple tracks.
But he never addressed the desperation of the Giants and its sharp curves.
“My main strategy is to get a feel for the truck,” Vitek said. “This is my first race at the Giants Despair so I need to feel how my car is performing on the track. I’ll finish him first in the class.
Vitek announced that the race would be held in honor of Darwood Gunton, one of Falls’ home racing heroes who died in a car crash in 2003. Vitek recalled how Gunton ran his own. racing career and how he praised him in every race.
“Ganton was one of the only people from Falls to have raced as a semi-pro,” said Vitek. “He was a big influence on my childhood because he was friends with my family when I was growing up. He took us to school in the Camaro or to school. I took him with me. I have his racing helmet and gloves and I wear them every race. “
Vitek said the vehicle of choice for the Despair Giants would be the 1965 Corvette, one of his current racing cars.
“It’s a bright red, 1965 Corvette Stingray, Trans Am,” Vitek said. “This is one of Chevrolet’s original race cars and was made to map the company.”
Vitek also promotes his love for cars on his YouTube channel, Turn 1. On Turn 1, Vitek and his son examine and test cars around the world.
“On our channel, we’ve been to Israel, Croatia, the UK and across the US to shoot,” Vitek said. “A friend of mine who is the producer of the show influenced me to start the program. When my kids got in and out of college, they got into cars and races and have helped me on the chain ever since. He gave me. “
This year, the Giants Despair Hill Climb will take place on Saturday July 10 and Sunday July 11. For more information on racing, please visit pahillclimb.org in the “Courses” section of the website.