Cocopah Speedway Racing Series returns Saturday
After a four-month break for the hot summer months, the second half of the 2016 Cocopah Speedway Racing Series resumes Saturday night at Cocopah Speedway.
The complete show will feature the IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sport Modifieds, IMCA Stock Cars and IMCA Hobby Stocks.
The first green flag flies at 7 p.m.
Saturday night’s show is also the last event on the IMCA national calendar, which means it’s the last night for drivers to score IMCA points at the track.
The IMCA points should not be confused with the Cocopah Speedway Racing Series points, however. The CSRS encompasses the entire 2016 season, which opened in January and will finish up in December.
However, in both the CSRS and the IMCA point standings, the drivers are much the same.
Entering Saturday night’s show, Brawley’s Russell Allen is the IMCA Modified leader in both point tallies, with Imperial’s Steven McCollough three points back.
In the Sport Modified title chase, Yuma’s Adolfo Noriega leads the field, ahead of Yuma’s Corey Clayton, who is six points back, Yuma’s James Dupre, eight points back,and Yuma’s Timmy Reese, nine points back.
On the IMCA Stock Car scene, Yuma’s Manny Baldiviez is at the front of the class, holding an eight-point lead over his nearest challenger, Yuma’s Joey Essary.
And in the Hobby Stock race, Yuma’s Jim Robinson continues to lead the field with a comfortable 12-point lead over Somerton’s Francisco Cordova.
“We are excited to get the second half of our season started!” said Tom Dalen, the track’s new director of operations, who added that fans and drivers will notice changes in the program since the last time the track was open for racing on May 21.
“Something new is we will award the trophies after each feature event rather than doing them all at the end,” said Dalen, “and we will have junior trophy presenters after every feature. And each presenter will get a small trophy to take home with them. And we will also a have junior flagman to wave the green flag in one of the heat.”
There will also be a “hot pit” in the infield, between Turns 3 and 4, during the feature events.
“The hot pit will be used by the pit men to change a tire, remove a piece of sheet metal or a quick repair,” explained Dalen. “It will be safer for everyone because we won’t have cars driving fast in the pits. It will only be used during the feature events .The cars will enter the hot pit from the back straightaway and return to the speedway on the front straightaway.”
During the break the season also got longer with Dalen adding a race on Dec. 17. Originally the season was going to end on Dec. 3.
“And it will be a 1 p.m. start,” said Dalen. “It’s normally a little chilly that time of year so we want to try an afternoon race and see how the fans respond to racing in the afternoon.
“Also I would like to do a topless race where the drivers in the Modified and the Sport Modified Divisions race without their roofs on the cars so the fans can get a good view of what it takes to drive a race car.”
Cocopah Speedway is located at U.S. 95 and County 15th Street; the general admission gate opens at 5 p.m; first race is at 7 p.m. Tickets are: adults (13 and older) – $12; adult military with ID – $10; senior (55 and over) – $10; children 12 years old and under – free (main grandstand); family pass – $25; Skybox – $25; pit pass – $30 (per person). Tickets can also be purchased on-line at www.cocopahspeedway.com or at Cocopah Wild River or at the main gate on race day. Fans can get live racing lineups during the races and results afterward by going towww.cocopahlive.com. Fans can also access live in-race scoring and lap times by going to mylaps.com. For more information call 344-1563 or go to www.cocopahspeedway.com.