Motorsports and performance events alive and well in Northwest
Each year the Northwest region experiences an increase in the number of automotive-related motorsports and performance events from Anchorage to Boise, Seattle to Missoula, Spokane to Portland. The Northwest Car Events Calendar 2018 Edition lists hundreds of events that include cars shows, auto races of all types, truck pulls, and performance-oriented events.
More than 660 diversified races are scheduled at tracks in five Northwest states and there are more than 435 vehicle shows scheduled in the region for the summer and fall season.
Many of the most popular racing events in the Northwest are sponsored by the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) and include on- and off-road car races and rallies. The American Rally Association (ARA) has three of its eight National Championship Series rallies in the Northwest, and the Society of Vintage Racing Enthusiasts (SOVREN) historic car races are held each summer at Pacific Raceways in Kent, with additional vintage car events sponsored by SOVREN at Spokane County Raceway and the Maryhill Hill Climb near Goldendale, Wash. Portland International Raceway (PIR) hosts the Portland Rose Cup Races in July, a Pirelli World Challenge series race. Drag race series are set a dozens of tracks, many part of national race series.
Racing and motorsports resources:
International Conference of Sports Car Clubs (www.icscc.com) is an association of independent sports car clubs in the Northwest and British Columbia founded in 1957, and is the largest sports car sanctioning body in the region.
International Hot Rod Association (www.ihra.com) is involved with drag racing events in North America, including Summit Series races in the Northwest. IHRA has sanctioned tracks in Alaska, Montana, and British Columbia.
National Hot Rod Association (www.nhra.com) has been the source for street rod enthusiasts since 1951 and sponsors a variety of car and motorcycle events throughout the country, including the NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways in Kent, Wash.
Northwest Motorcycle Association (www.nmaoffroad.org) is a Washington-based group that has hosted a variety of off-road motorcycle events for decades in the Northwest region as a partner with Tread Lightly!
Northwest Motorsports Road Racing Club (www.northwestmotorsports.org) has roots back to 1954 and hosts ICSCC Championship road racing at Spokane County Raceway.
Northwest Truck Pulls (www.nwtruckpulls.com) is the region’s premier diesel-pulling organization that stages events in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and British Columbia.
Society of Vintage Racing Enthusiasts (SOVREN) (www.sovren.org) is a Seattle-based nonprofit group of racing enthusiasts founded in 1986 with members throughout the Northwest, California, and British Columbia. SOVREN sponsors several vintage car races and events on the West Coast, including the popular Pacific Northwest Historics race held annually at Pacific Raceways in Kent, Wash.
Sports Car Club of America (www.scca.com) provides Club Racing, Rally Series, Rallycross, and Solo racing programs, including dozens of events sponsored by the SCCA Northwest Region (www.nwr-scca.org).
West Coast Streetcar Association (www.wcsaracing.com) is a non-profit group that promotes quality drag racing at Pacific Raceways.
There are dozens of racetracks throughout the Northwest and Alaska, from ovals to drag strips, as well as a variety of dirt and paved road courses. Below is a sampling of a few of the tracks listed by state.
Alaska Raceway Park in Palmer (www.raceak.com) has been a fixture in Alaska racing for more than 54 years and is nestled at the base of Pioneer Peak near Palmer. The park offers a May-to-September season of racing that includes snow machines, motorcycles, Funny Cars, SCCA races, drags, and more. It is Alaska’s only sanctioned IHRA facility and features IHRA Summit Series races, as well as NASCAR sanctioned races. The Weld Air Alaska NASCAR Sprint Car Shootout race is June 9.
Capitol Speedway in Willow (www.capitolspeedway.org) was established in 1978 and offers Sprint, Stock, Mini Stock, Hobby Stock, Pickup Truck, and other races, including demolition derby events, on its 3/8-mile oval dirt track each year from May to early September. The 7th annual Firecracker 100 will be July 2.
Firebird Raceway in Boise (www.firebirdonline.com) is the home of the longstanding Boise Roadster Show and diverse racing events throughout the April-to-October season. The 40th annual Great American Fox Hunt is set for June 16-17, and the 46th annual Pepsi Nightfire Nationals will be Aug. 10-13.
Meridian Speedway in Meridian (www.meridianspeedway.com) features a full spectrum of races from Winged Sprints to Super Stocks. Meridian is a grand oval track that has been operated since 1951 and offers events through early September. The NASCAR Whelen All-American Series race is July 14.
Montana Raceway Park in Kalispell (www.mtracewaypark.com) was built in 1991, can accommodate 4,000 spectators, and offers races that include Late Models, Legends, Bandoleros, Hobby Stocks, and others on its high-bank, super-oval 3/8-mile track. The 27th Coors Light Montana 200, with a purse of more than $50,000, is set for July 19-21.
Portland International Raceway in Portland (www.portlandraceway.com) is a city-owned track that offers a year-round schedule of racing and special events that include drag, track, club, stock car, motorcycle, bicycle, motocross, and kart races, among others. Multiple SCCA events are held at PIR throughout the season. The 58th annual Rose Cup Races are scheduled for July 13-15, and the Portland Vintage Racing Festival is July 27-29.
Southern Oregon Speedway in White City (www.southernoregonspeedway.com) has Modified, Pro Stock, Dwarf Car, Sprint Car, and other races from April to September. A Malicious Monster Truck Series race is set for June 9, and the WSDCA Dwarf Car Nationals will be Aug. 3-4.
Willamette Speedway in Lebanon (www.trophymotorsports.com) is a state-of-the-art track that races for Super Late Models, IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sportmods, Super Sports, Street Stocks, Hornet, and others. Modified Speedweek (IMCA Modifieds, Super Sports, and IMCA Stock Cars) is June 29-30, and the MOD National Hornet Challenge is Aug. 18.
Evergreen Speedway in Monroe (www.evergreenspeedway.com) provides racing events from NASCAR (Whelen All-American Series) to Winged Sprints, Pro 4 Trucks to Mini Stocks during its packed seven-month race season. The 7th annual Summer Showdown, the largest and richest NASCAR short track event in the U.S., is June 29-30.
Pacific Raceways in Kent (www.pacificraceways.com) is one of the busiest tracks on the West Coast. Diverse races are scheduled from April to October and incorporate road racing, motocross, drags, and SCCA events, plus the popular ProFormance Racing School operates year round. The 30th annual Pacific Northwest Historics Vintage Races (SOVREN) will be June 29 to July 1, and the 31st annual NHRA Mello Yellow Northwest Nationals, hailed as the Northwest’s largest motorsports event, are Aug. 3-5.
Skagit Speedway in Alger (www.skagitspeedway.com) is a 3/10-mile oval track founded in 1954. It has seating for 8,100 spectators, plus more than 2,000 can be accommodated in the grass area. Sprints, Modifieds, USAC Midgets, and others perform April to September. The 47th annual Jim Raper Memorial Dirt Cup races, an ASCS National Event, are June 21-23.
Spokane County Raceway in Airway Heights (www.spokanecountyraceway.com) features a 2.5-mile road course, drag strip, and half-mile oval track. Events this summer, in addition to several NHRA Summit Series races, include the Spokane Festival of Speed and SOVREN historic races on June 1-3, and the Les Schwab Nitro Summer Nationals Jet Car Finals, presented by NAPA, Aug. 17-18.