Yreka, CA…April 13…Saturday night was the inaugural event promoted by Kevin Barba at Siskiyou Golden Speedway. With rain causing the cancellation of the three scheduled practice days, the crew worked hard to get everything ready for the season opener. Fans noticed the difference with the various improvements that have been made.
Everything seemed to be going well. The pits swelled to roughly 50 cars across four divisions of racing, and there were some top name competitors in town to give the race track a go. Race track conditions held up nicely as the night went on. The racing went well throughout the heat races and into the Trophy Dashes. It was looking like an ideal night for racing. Then it happened.
As Ethan Killingsworth, Matt Sanders and Jimmy Ford battled at the front of the pack in the scheduled 20 lap IMCA Sport Modified Main Event, Gary Foster rolled on the front straightaway to bring out a red flag. He was not injured, but it took a few minutes to clean things up and get racing going again.
The green flag waved once again on the exciting battle at the front of the pack, but only a few more laps took place before the big crash happened. Zac Potts crashed into the front stretch fence near the flag stand and took out a big section of fencing. It was a hard crash that brought another red flag on the race. Neither Potts nor anybody else was injured, but his race car was totaled.
With a big section of fencing and some poles taken out, Barba was faced with the unfortunate decision of having to cancel the remainder of the program. It was the best decision for safety. The takeaway from this incident was the fact that the safety precautions put into place did their job. The fencing kept the crash from being worse, and IMCA safety precautions written into the rules for construction of the race cars did their job in protecting Potts.
Barba and his crew were already hard at work on Sunday getting the fencing back up so that next Saturday’s scheduled event can still take place. As for the opener, the IMCA Sport Modified feature was called complete with about half of the laps in the books. Matt Sanders was the winner ahead of Jimmy Ford, Ethan Killingsworth, Brandon Hand and Colt Boswell. Isaac Sanders, Hand and Scott Savell won their respective eight lap heat races, and Randy Wright was the four lap Trophy Dash winner.
The Mini Stock division was able to complete their full program. 2015 champion and reigning Southern Oregon Speedway champ David Steele won the 20 lap Main Event. Mike Whitaker got to take a turn behind the wheel of the Marilyn Yawnick car after Yawnick picked up a win in the four lap Trophy Dash. He finished second to Steele in the Main Event as Darek Alford, Mike McLeod and Terry Kendrick completed the Top 5. Eight lap heat race wins went to Steele and Alford.
The Calculated Comfort Outlaw Pro Stock heat race wins went to reigning champion Dr Scott Lenz and John David Duffie. Lenz also won the four lap Trophy Dash. Jesse Bailey won the IMCA Modified eight lap heat race, and Duane Orsburn was the four lap Trophy Dash winner.
Next Saturday night is Little League Night at the races. There will be an Easter Egg hunt in the infield during intermission, and there will be two bikes raffled off. The IMCA Sport Modifieds and Mini Stocks will be on the card that night. For the latest information, go to www.siskiyougoldenspeedway.com or go to the Siskiyou Golden Speedway Facebook page.