Santa Maria, California
August 9, 1997 - Fairgrounds Raceway
From: Gary Roberts
Speedway started up again at Santa Maria, after a 2 week break. The
track has 50 tons of new DG and apart from being a bit wet at the start
of the evening, was generally quite good.
Brian Thompson 15
Mark Maynard 11
Kitt Nay 9
Dave Booth 8
Kevin Ward 8
John VanderMuelen 8
Jeff Smith 4
Paul Baldwin 4
Dean Mitchell 2
Jimmy Collins 2
Thompson, Maynard, Nay, VanderMuelen, Booth
VanderMuelen, Ward, Smith, Baldwin, Mitchell
The rider turn out was disappointing. At 7pm on Friday, the program was
printed, based on the 19 riders who had agreed to ride. At 7pm Saturday,
10 showed up to ride, one called up, and the other 8 were AWOL. A great
disappointment, considering all the work that had been put in, by
volunteers during the week, to totally re-build the track. The crowd was
also a bit thin.
It was tempting to cancel the event. With 10 riders, its difficult to
put on a championship format event. But rather than punish those that
did show up, it was decided to go ahead. With the resources available,
it actually turned out to be quite a good show. There were some good
fast close races. More quality than quantity.
Thankfully some go carts and some midget cars showed up to dilute the
embarrassment of the speedway.
The racing went without any problems until the A main. First time out,
Dave Booth overslid in turn 3 of the first lap and Kit Nay had nowhere
to go but straight into him. Both fell heavily, and Dave declined
joining the restart. Kit made it on a borrowed bike. In the re-run John
VanderMuelen went wide on the exit of turn 2 and hit the wall, hurting
his back. He was taken to hospital for X-rays. Second re-run was with 3
riders. For the third time, Brian Thompson, made the gate and led for 4
laps, followed by Mark Maynard and Kit Nay. Brian was the only rider on a
new laydown. By comparison Mark Maynard, our Vandenberg rocket
scientist, was riding a 2 valve.
John VanderMuelen's X-rays turned out OK, the only damage was a badly
bruised tailbone. Less fortunate was Dave Booth. He called in at the
hospital after the races and discovered he had a broken shoulder and a
Racing is planned at Santa Maria to run, every Saturday, until October.
I am on vacation the next 2 weekends, so will be quiet for a while.
Gary Roberts - email@example.com