By Gary Thomas
Placerville, CA…The El Dorado County Fairgrounds based Placerville Speedway is locked and loaded to host one of its longest running events, with the 19th annual “Tribute to Al Hinds” set to take place this Saturday night.
Al Hinds was the second promoter of Placerville Speedway. Hinds took operation of the track with business partner Richard Hirst from its founder, Bruno Romani, in 1968, three years after it first opened when the facility was built around an existing community football field.
The operator of a local machine shop by trade, Hinds loved the community where he lived. In his final years of life he enjoyed sitting with some of his best friends every night in the grandstands at Placerville Speedway and loved watching young talent make a name for themselves in the sport.
Former track announcer, publicist and historian Bill Sullivan said of Al Hinds, “From the day he set foot on the red clay at Placerville Speedway to the very last race he attended, Hinds continued to display his true love for auto racing and the community in which he brought it to. Even in his final years he continued to help young drivers, entertain fans and most importantly he spent a great deal of time talking to and mentoring those that helped in speedway operations. When Hinds spoke, anyone who cared remotely about the future of the sport would sit down and listen.”
On the card this Saturday will be the Thompson’s Family of Dealerships Winged 360 Sprint Cars, the Mountain Democrat Ltd. Late Models, Red Hawk Pure Stocks and the Mountain Democrat Mini Trucks.
Mather’s Kalib Henry, Oakley’s Nick Baldwin and Rancho Cordova’s Mike Miller claimed wins last week with the Thompson’s Winged 360s, Red Hawk Pure Stocks and Mountain Democrat Mini Trucks respectively. This Saturday’s Tribute to Al Hinds marks the season opener for the Mtn. Democrat Ltd. Late Models.
Diamond Springs competitor Dan Jinkerson locked down his first career Mountain Democrat Ltd. Late Model title last season. On the strength of two wins, he was able to top teammate Tyler Lightfoot by 24-points at seasons end. The ground pounders are set to contest a total of nine point races this year.
Adult tickets for the Tribute to Al Hinds this Saturday April 9th cost $18 while seniors 62+, military and juniors 12-17 will be $16. Kids 6-11 cost $8 and those five and under are free. Purchase tickets online at https://www.eventsprout.com/event/points-race-3 or at the gate on race day.
Grandstand seating is general admission at each event, except for the reserved seats marked for season ticket holders. Please note if patrons sit in a reserved seat, they may be asked to move. Pit passes can be purchased at the pit gate or on Pit Pay to take advantage of the expanded seating area on the hill.
The pit gate will open at noon, with the front grandstand gate opening at 3pm. Happy Hour is offered from 4-6pm in the grandstands featuring live music along with discounted Coors Light and Coors Original at the beer booth. The pit meeting will be held at 4:30pm with cars on track at 5:15. Hot laps, ADCO Driveline qualifying and racing will follow.
FloRacing returns as the official broadcast partner of the Placerville Speedway in 2022. The popular company is set to live stream every event this year.
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
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