Saturday, May 19, 2012

Mission Raceway

Last weekend I took a drive up the valley with my dad to the Mission Raceway for some good old-fashioned auto racing fun.

The Mission Raceway has been at its present location since March 14th, 1992 and offers up a 1/4 mile dragstrip, a 2 km, 9-turn road course and a 3 km motocross track. Throughout the summer there are races every weekend in various classes and $10 will get you a come and go as you want Day Pass.

On what turned out to be a super warm and sunny day I was expecting the place to be packed with spectators but, surprisingly, there were probably more race drivers and pit crew people in attendance than there were spectators. With no crowds to navigate and with the pits being open to the public and with plenty of spots to view from, it made for an awesome day of entertainment.

"Look, Ma! No hands!"

Despite how this next one looks at first glance, there is a driver in there somewhere.

The races we saw covered three different classes of road racing. The pictures above are all Formula Ford cars, an entry-level racing series. These cars are TINY! No matter how much I'd love to take one for a spin I don't think my 6'4" frame could fit in these vehicles. That said, they are very fast...

...Something I think I mostly failed at capturing in these pictures.

I knew I needed a fast shutter speed to eliminate motion blur but I was hoping the backgrounds would be a lot more blurred on the drive-by shots. The picture above I like but it still doesn't capture speed - the cars may as well be going 10 km/hr instead of averaging 150 km/hr!

The above picture and those below this, were all in the Vintage class - some cool looking wheels on show. This tricked out Mini was extremely nippy and boy did it handle the corners well.

I think the Mini managed to lap this vintage Volvo which may or may not be a Volvo 123 GT.

You can't beat a classic American muscle car like a Chevy Camaro.

The below picture is my favorite from the day thanks to the orange Porsche nudging the edge of the track and kicking up the cloud of dust in the background. The car in front is the classic Lotus 7.

This particular Lotus 7 is a two-time REVS (River's Edge Vintage Series) Champion and is driven by Mark Brown who has a cool POV video showing what it's like to race the Lotus 7 at the Mission Raceway here.

If you like seeing cool cars I highly recommend a drive out to Mission especially since the pits are open to the public so you can wander around, get a great up-close look at things and even chat with the driver's and their crews.

Until next time folks, drive safe!