Auto Cross Race Coming to Region 8

Posted at 10:00 a.m. CST -- February 6, 2004

Walnut Ridge -- The Sports Car Club of America is preparing for a national race to be held next month in Walnut Ridge. Like any car race, sponsors have to do a test run of the course first. The Walnut Ridge Airport was turned into an auto cross course on Saturday for that first test.

Auto cross racing is the lowest form of competitive racing the SCCA will allow. The races are usually held on parking lots all across the nation.

" The size of the facility here at the Walnut Ridge Airport will allow us to bring a part of the national tour to here to the Arkansas Region," said Jonathan Jackson, who's with the Arkansas region of SCCA.

The race will be 1 of 11 races on this years national tour. During the race, drivers compete on a course that features a series of sharp turns around cones. Cars speed around curves at 60 - 70 MPH. The winner is determined by the fastest time.

" You're not allowed to make mistakes because you only have 43 sec to complete the run," said 3 time national champion, Grady Wood.

Now that the course is set up, the Arkansas region of SCCA is expecting to attract some 250 auto cross drivers to the Walnut Ridge Airport next month. The dates are set for March 19th and 20th.