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Racing season burns off the line this weekend

Racing season burns off the line this weekend

Lake County High Desert Motor Sports Park will be the place to be come this weekend when drag racing season officially opens with races held May 17-18.

Operated by the Lake County Desert Cruisers Club, the 1/8 mile drag strip will open on Saturday, May 17, at 9 a.m., with time trials starting at 10 a.m., and elimination rounds beginning at 1 p.m. The same hours of operation will continue on Sunday, May 18.

Entrance fees are $35 for non-members of the Desert Cruisers for car and driver, and $25 for members. Admission for spectators is free.

All cars are eligible, with morning time trials determining top speed of vehicles that allows for staggered starts for slower drivers in elimination rounds.

The race track and events are sanctioned by the National Hot Rod Association, and follow time-based divisions of Sportsman, Pro, and Super Pro.

“We usually get about 20-25 cars participating,” said Mike Yates, longtime Desert Cruisers member and former club president.

The track, built by Desert Cruisers Club and paved with financial support from Lake County, has been operating for two decades. Prior to that races were held on the airport runway, and Yates recalls a time when people would drag race on Hwy 140.

“We had a quarter mile marked off on the highway, and just hoped nobody would be coming down the road when we were racing,” Yates laughed.

Races are planned through September, including the annual destruction derby Labor Day weekend.

For information on Lake County High Desert Motor Sports Park contact Yates at 541-947-3970, and Philip Elder for Desert Cruisers Club at 541-219-0616.

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