By Gary Thomas
Placerville, CA – August 14, 2018…The El Dorado County Fairgrounds based Placerville Speedway is geared up to host one of the biggest night’s in the 2018 season with the 13th annual Mark Forni Classic on deck this Saturday August 18.
The Thompson’s Auto Group Winged 360 Sprint Car feature at the Mark Forni Classic will once again pay a solid $5,000-to-win, making it the highest paying single-night event of the season for the division at the quarter-mile. Along with the Sprint Cars also in competition Saturday will be the Ltd. Late Models, Pure Stocks and the Nor-Cal Dwarf Car Association.
The Forni family has a great history in El Dorado County, with deep ties to the El Dorado County Fairgrounds and much of the land on which it sits. Much like his forefathers, Mark Forni had a great passion for the county fair and its attributes, especially the race track.
From the time he was a young child and the days when Placerville Speedway was known as “Old Hangtown Speedway,” Mark was actively involved with the weekly auto races, always willing to lend a helping hand to anyone in need involved with the sport he loved.
Later in life, Mark continued his contributions to local auto racing, sponsoring many race teams with his business, Forni’s Trucking. He later became a member of the El Dorado County Fair Board and focused on the issues regarding the future of the fair and the speedway. Mark Forni believed in working relationships. He understood the importance of race promoters, sponsorships and the one key element for every event to be successful, the spectator.
In November of 2004, Mark was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma. During his final months, Mark had the opportunity to say goodbye to friends and family and spend some special moments with his wife and children, a bittersweet time for those who knew and loved him so much. In the summer of 2005, Mark passed away at the early age of 45
“Mark was the guy who got it done no matter what,” said past Placerville Speedway promoter Alan Handy. “It didn’t matter how big of a problem we may have had. He would call me up see what it would take to fix it. He didn’t just provide the resources either. Mark would be right there lending a hand right down to his final days. I miss him, I think everyone here misses him, he was a great guy.”
Andy Forsberg, Matt Michelli and Scott Grunert sit atop the Winged 360 Sprint Car, Ltd. Late Model and Pure Stock standings respectively heading into the Mark Forni Classic on Saturday. A solid field of 360 Sprint Cars is expected with 5k on the line to the winner. Clarksburg’s Justyn Cox is the reigning champion of the Forni and he’ll look to make it back-to-back this weekend. Other previous winners expected include point leader Forsberg, along with Kyle Hirst, Sean Becker, Andy Gregg and Mason Moore.
Adult tickets this Saturday will cost $15, while seniors 62 plus, military and juniors 12-17 will be $13, children 6-11 are $6, kids five and under are free! Tickets can also be purchased online by clicking https://www.universe.com/events/2018-placerville-speedway-championship-points-race-15-the-forni-classic-tickets-placerville-70RWQD
The pit gate will open at 2pm, with the front grandstand gate opening at 3pm. A happy hour will be offered from 4pm-6pm in the grandstands featuring discounted Coors Light and Coors Original at the beer stand. Drivers meeting will be held at 4:30pm, with cars on track for wheel packing at 5. Hot laps, qualifying and racing will follow.
The Placerville Speedway is located on the beautiful El Dorado County Fairgrounds in Placerville, California. Take Hwy US-50 to Forni Road/Placerville Drive exit. Then go north on Placerville Drive to the Fairgrounds. The physical address is 100 Placerville Dr., Placerville, CA 95667. For more information on the Placerville Speedway log onto http://www.placervillespeedway.com
The Placerville Speedway would like to thank all of its partners for their support this season including Red Hawk Casino, Hoosier Racing Tires, Coors Light, Thompson’s Auto Group, Absolute Auto Glass, ADCO Driveline and Custom Exhaust, Bear Republic Brewing, Beef’N’Brew, Capital Ace Hardware, Carol Russell Bookkeeping Service, Campora Propane, Davies Family Inn, High Sierra Industries, Poor Reds BBQ, Les Schwab Tires, the Paint Spot, Riebies Auto Parts, Shadow Ridge Ranch, The Critter Getter, Foothill Tree Service, Mountain Democrat, Union Bank, Windfall Media, Arnolds for Awards, and Sierra Arbor Worx.
Join over 10,400 followers of Placerville Speedway on Facebook, where you can keep abreast of updates for the 2018 season. You can also find Placerville Speedway on Twitter by following us https://twitter.com/pvillespeedway – In addition, Placerville Speedway is also on Instagram. Please follow us @PvilleSpeedway.
The quarter-mile clay oval is operated by Russell Motorsports Incorporated, which can be reached at the track business office at 530-344-7592. Contact Kami Arnold or Scott Russell directly for 2018 sponsorship opportunities at the office.