2017 Schedule Announced For Southern Oregon Speedway Outlaw Kart Track
White City, Oregon...The 2017 schedule has been announced for the Southern Oregon Speedway Outlaw Kart track. This will be the 20th season of racing on the Kart track. Many racing careers have been launched on the fast one-eighth mile dirt oval, and NASCAR star Kyle Larson has even raced here. The roster of divisions includes 500 Open Karts, 250 Intermediates, Box Stocks and Beginners Box Stocks.
The schedule includes an April 15th Test & Tune. Some of these young drivers are new or very new to racing. In fact, last year there were multiple instances where the Beginners Box Stock drivers were so nervous that they didn't want to race. The Test & Tune is an opportunity for these youngsters to get some lap time in a non racing environment. Should the 15th get rained out, the track has an April 22nd date set as a backup.
The way the divisions are set up gives these drivers a way to compete against others in their skill bracket. The 5-8 year olds get started in the Beginners class before moving up to Box Stocks. Next in line is the 250 Intermediate class. The track does have a 125's class, but they've been running in the 250's due to low car count. The 500 Karts are the pinnacle of Outlaw Kart racing, and the track has a special date planned that is to be announced. Management has expressed an interest in having a 600cc Micro Sprint program if there is enough driver interest.
The championship season kicks off on May 12th with another event scheduled on May 19th. June 9th will include a Kid's Bike Race, which will see awards handed out to winners of various age groups. The Mid Season Championship is slated for June 23rd. Double points will be on the line that night in all divisions. The point leaders at the end of the night will receive mid season championship trophies.
The second half of the season kicks off with a pair of July races on the 7th and 21st. A special race is in the works for July, but that announcement will be forthcoming. The first race of August is the 11th, and the season comes to a close on the 18th with Championship Night. This will again be a double point race, and that will surely be a factor in who wins the championship. At the end of it all, there will again be a championship banquet to honor the champions of the 20th season of racing on the Outlaw Kart track. That date is yet to be announced.
Several of the stars of Medford Kart racing have been impressing on the winter series circuit. In Roseburg, Natalie Richard captured another championship there. Just a year after winning the Beginner title, she won the Box Stock championship. Natalie was third behind Trevor Grimes and Emma Rodgers in the Medford Box Stock race last season. She could be poised to make a run at the championship this year, but two time champion Grimes may be tough to beat. 2014 Box Stock champion Carley Holmes is currently fifth in points at Red Bluff. She has also won there this year in addition to her one victory at Medford last year. Carley also competes in the 250 Intermediate class.
Speaking of which, several Medford stars ranked near the top of the Roseburg point list this winter, including Colby Bergquist, Ashleigh Strain, Wyatt Pinkney and our own 2016 champion, Bodee Weiser. Bodee was a feature winner with us last year, and he also won the Box Stock championship in Roseburg last year. Not to be outdone, Braden Weiser was the 250 champion this winter in Roseburg. You know when the Weiser Boys are there, you'll have tough competition. They don't come much tougher than three time Medford 250's champion Tanner Holmes. Tanner pulled off three wins in 250's at Medford last year, in addition to one win in the 500's, but right now he's leading the pack in Red Bluff. In addition to multiple wins, he's hoping to avoid problems and bring home the Red Bluff championship.
We haven't heard too much about our 500 Open drivers racing during the winter, but Merissa Henson did makes some starts in Roseburg. Merissa was the winner of the final race last season. Meanwhile, Mike Wheeler was a two time winner, including his victory in the Vern Wheeler Memorial Race. During the winter, you can usually find him in Red Bluff, competing hard and winning races. That's again the case this year as he is second in the standings as the season nears a close.
In Salem, we noticed that two time Medford Beginner Box Stock winner and Yreka champion Taylor Fuller has joined his Yreka championship winning sister Brionna Fuller in Box Stocks. Meanwhile, one of our more enthusiastic newcomers last season was Malachi Johnson. Malachi has also made some trips up north to race at Salem this winter. We anticipate this young hard charger competing for the Beginner Box Stock championship this season along with reigning champion Kiley Grimes. Malachi's first two Medford starts were back to back Top 5 finishes.
It all starts with the Beginners class, and we saw two double digit car counts in the final two races last year, both won by T. Fuller. Teammates Roger Whipple and Thomas Whipple, Shailene Horn, Adrian Richard and Nicholas Davis Jr. are other drivers to watch for. T. Fuller is moving up to compete with T. Grimes, Richard, Rodgers, Loveah Crice and Ryan Hirschback. We watched Devin Felix climb the ladder last year from Box Stocks to 250's, where he's racing the Weisers's, the Holmes's, Enrique Jaime, Braden Corey and Brenden Bartlett. Felix and teammate Bartlett have been doing some winter racing in Red Bluff.
It will be time to have fun outdoors on the Southern Oregon Speedway Outlaw Kart track again this year, starting with the Test & Tune on April 15th. The season opener is May 12th with seven exciting races to follow. For further information, check out the official website at www.southernoregonspeedway.com.
Southern Oregon Outlaw Kart Racers Celebrate 2016 Season, Looking Forward To The New Season
White City, Oregon...The Southern Oregon Speedway Outlaw Kart drivers gathered at Abby's Pizza to celebrate the accomplishments of the 2016 season. The show went on last year despite weather and other unforeseen obstacles impacting half of the season. Promoter Mike McCann gave a brief speech that started by thanking the hard working staff and all of the competitors who supported his first season promoting the track. He touched on the rainouts from 2016 by saying that he will make every effort to reschedule weather effected races when possible this season.
The track announcer then addressed the group by highlighting important points in the schedule. A Mid Season Championship Race slated for June 22nd will be for double points with the point leader in each of the four classes being crowned Mid Season Champion. The Championship Night on August 18th will also be for double points. A June 9th event will include a Kids Bike Race and another announcement regarding a special night is forthcoming. The track has a playday scheduled for April 15th with a rain makeup on April 22nd. As we have young Beginners Box Stock drivers who are nervous and some opt not to get in their cars on race night, this will be an opportunity for them to make laps and get comfortable in a non competitive environment.
The Beginners were the first class honored. Jacob James received the fifth place trophy on the strength of a win and a second. Two time winner Taylor Fuller finished fourth in points and confirmed his move up to Box Stocks this year. The steady Adrian Richard finished third in points on the strength of a season high second. A happy Shailene Horn accepted her second place trophy. She also won one Main Event. Kiley Grimes was crowned champion. She had three Top 3 finishes and got better with each start. Word is that this class will see more new drivers this season.
Carley Holmes was the 2014 Box Stock champion. She won one Main Event this season and was on hand to accept her fifth place trophy. Carley also has a 250 Intermediate Kart. Ryan Hirschbock moved up from Beginners during the season and got better with each race as his season high fifth place finish earned him the fourth place trophy. Natalie Richard was just crowned Roseburg champion, and her three Top 5 finishes earned her the third place trophy at Medford. Emma Rodgers had a second and two thirds to rank a strong second in points. Trevor Grimes had three wins and a second to repeat as champion. It's anticipated that he will be back to race again this season.
Brenden Bartlett kicked off the 250 Intermediate Kart season with back to back second place finishes on his way to fifth in points. Recently crowned Roseburg champion Braden Weiser used a season high third place finish to earn the fourth place trophy in Medford. Enrique Jaime never failed to finish in the Top 5 as he ranked third in points. We've heard that he has a Mini Stock this season. Three time champion Tanner Holmes won all three of his starts to finish second in points. Bodee Wesier was fast and consistent with a win, two seconds and one third to earn the championship trophy. Bodee and Braden will both be racing this year.
Merissa Henson finished fifth in Mini Stock points and used her one win to finish fifth in 500 Open Kart points. Tanner Holmes won the opener and finished fifth in the Vern Wheeler Memorial to earn the fourth place trophy. Holmes confirmed that he will be racing a Sprint Car while still competing in Karts. Chase Hill had a second place finish to help earn him third in points. With two wins, including the Vern Wheeler Memorial, Mike Wheeler collected the second place trophy. On the strength of a season high second place finish in his three starts, Johnny Burke earned the championship trophy.
All of the drivers in all classes did a great job of putting on a show and displaying good sportsmanship. The one-eighth mile dirt oval will enter it's 20th season with a good field of future stars in the making. All of the championship trophies were well earned last season, but the 2017 honors are yet to be earned. The new season is just around the corner. For further information, go to www.southernoregonspeedway.com.
We would like to invite everyone to check out the kart races at Southern Oregon Speedway: where the whole family can race!