By Gary Thomas
Santa Maria, CA – July 17, 2013…On Saturday July 27 the traveling King of the West 410 Sprint Car Series will make its return to the popular Santa Maria Speedway in Santa Maria, California for the first time in two years. With its coastal climate the track is always a favorite stop among teams and fans alike, especially during the heat of summer.
The King of the West 410 Series competed at the Santa Maria Speedway on two occasions during the 2011 season, with the first being captured by Placerville’s Andy Gregg and the second won by Chico’s Jonathan Allard. The victory for Gregg marked his first career Golden State/ King of the West 410 triumph and was a night many will never forget.
Doug Fort built the Santa Maria Speedway in 1964 and helped mold it into one of the top dirt tracks in the country as the owner/promoter until his passing in 1999. The unique one-third mile clay oval has been named “Best Short Track Operation West of the Mississippi” on two separate occasions and is nestled in a semi amphitheater of natural terrain, sheltered by dense eucalyptus trees at the top and to the back of the bleacher area.
Thirteen-time Golden State/ King of the West 410 Sprint Car Series champion Brent Kaeding was the 1978 Santa Maria Speedway Rookie of the Year and looks forward to the return on July 27. “We always love going to the Santa Maria Speedway and are really excited to have the chance to go back there on July 27 with the KWS 410’s,” he said. “It’s always a nice getaway during the summer and is one of those unique tracks we have out here. I know we can’t wait to see all the fans down there next week.”
The event on Saturday July 27 will be the 13th round of competition for the King of the West 410 Sprint Car Series and continues the busy month of July that has seen the tour go from Fernley, Nevada to Watsonville, Antioch and then Santa Maria. There are also some terrific restaurants and places to dine at just before getting to the track and don’t forget it is located near the renowned Pismo Beach area.
For King of the West 410 Sprint Car Series competitor Jason Statler it will also be a return to the site of one of his major career accomplishments, which occurred in 1999 when he beat the traveling World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series. “Going to Santa Maria always brings back some great memories from that night and we’re excited to head there on July 27,” Statler said. “It’s a great place to compete at and they usually pack the fans in so that makes it a lot of fun for all of us drivers and teams.”
The front gate of the Santa Maria Speedway will open at 4:30pm on Saturday July 27 with qualifying around 5pm and racing anticipated to get underway around 6pm. Adult tickets will cost $25, students, military and seniors will be $23, kids six to 12 will be $6 and kids five and under free.
The Santa Maria Speedway is a one-third mile high banked clay oval located 12 miles inland from the Pacific coast, three miles north of the city of Santa Maria and is located a 1/4-mile north of the US 101/166 interchange on Hutton Road. The facility is one hundred seventy miles north of Los Angeles and 260 miles south of San Francisco. Information on the track & ticket info can be found at http://www.racesantamariaspeedway.com/
Amenities at the Speedway include free parking, handicapped parking, free transportation and assistance to bleachers and return for the handicapped, senior citizens and military rates, a designated “Family Section” in the bleachers with no smoking or drinking allowed, reserved terrace seating at both the north and south ends of the bleachers designed for lawn chairs, excellent P.A. system, stadium quality track lighting, clean restrooms, digital scoreboard and reasonably priced refreshments.