It appears that stock car racing actually has returned to the California's Antelope Valley and the positive response has been overwhelming. Stock Car Syndicate, a new racing organization created by co-promoters Nick Jennings and Jon Christensen, held a test and tune practice session at the Willow Springs Speedway, a quarter mile paved oval located at the Willow Springs International Motor Sports complex, in Rosamond-California this past Sunday-September 14th. No one knew exactly to expect when the gates were unlocked that morning but the promoters were thrilled with a turn out of 37 cars, representing a variety of racing divisions, as well as a pit area filled with enthusiastic racing teams. The response from telephone calls, emails and those who attended the practice session has now set the stage for Stock Car Syndicate's first ever race on October 5th.
Some of the racing divisions that spent time on the Willow Springs Speedway that day included Late Models, Legends, Street Stocks, Bandoleros, Outlaw Figure eights, Pro 4 and even a quarter midget. From 930 am Sunday morning until late in the afternoon the track was filled with cars while crew chiefs stood alongside of the fence with stop watches and note pads.
Jon Christensen was thrilled with the results of the test and tune session and said "everybody was really happy with it,people got a lot a lot of track time and we got some really good input. The fifth, (of October), looks like it's going to be a really great race." Christensen is extremely excited about their first race and said "we've already have a few divisions lined up and we're going with divisions that can be added.Right now Christensen said they're looking at creating a winter racing schedule adding "We're looking at probably hosting three or four races before the end of the year. We'll take the month of December off and then try to get something rolling for January, February and March perhaps another three or four races. Past that we're looking at trying to create a complete summer series.for Saturday nights"
With the proverbial promoter's smile on his face virtually all day long, Nick Jennings was equally pleased with the turn out for the practice session and said "I think it's more positive than I assumed that it would be and I'm very happy with it. We had 37 cars here just like I thought that we might and we're planning our October 5th race based on what we saw here today" Jennings is well aware.that many California tracks will be closing for the season around November 1st and that could translate into an expanded car count during his winter races. "Yes, I can see that. I think people want something to do in the winter time. I think a winter series is always good and we've got the good weather here to do it with. We've just got to promote this thing like crazy so we can get the people in the stands to watch our local drivers race."
The response from some of the drivers were also very positive. Long time Antelope Valley resident Chris Peedan has likely seen more checkered flags and division championships that any driver who has raced on the Willow Springs Speedway. "It's like the greatest thing in the world right now as far as I'm concerned," he said adding "there's a really great car count that showed up here today. This is a blessing. We need to get racing back here in the AV. We've got plenty of cars here and it couldn't happen at a better time. It's just great."
John Penning is another Willow Springs Speedway veteran who has seen his fair share of checkered flags. "I feel really good about this, I really do," he said adding "they need this place open. In the past they've had some of the best racing I've ever seen right here. Everybody here gets along. I just love this place and I can't wait for racing to return here."
Randy Wilkins is another veteran of past Willow Springs racing seasons and said "this has been long awaited. Short tracks have been dying by the minute. I just love it and hopefully we'll get a season going back out here and it will be fun for everybody. Their first race is scheduled for a Sunday afternoon but I'd like to get them back to Saturday nights because it's just too hot during the day."
On Sunday, October 5th, full fledged stock car racing returns to the Willow Springs Speedway for the first time in nearly three years. Invited classes for this first race include Super Stocks, Late Models, Bandeleros, Mini Stocks, Legends, and Figure Eights with an option to add even more racing classes over the next few weeks. The gates will open at 9 am that morning with the first green flag flying at 1 pm. Racing's return to the Antelope Valley is being presented by Stock Car Syndicate along with PCM: Paul Copenhaver Motor Sports. Track sponsors include Tire-Xpress, Quartz Hill Auto Parts, Welding Unlimited, Ron's Rear Ends, Happy's Liquor of Quartz Hill, CMJ Racing, D&D Muffler, "The Plumber" Industrial Metal Supply, California Stripes, Canyon Auto/R V Wash and Uncle Andy's Joint in Quartz Hill.
For more information contact Nick Jennings at 661 305 3789, Jon Christensen at 805 503 9985