California Speedway's King Taco 500 Bridgestone Presents the Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford event scheduled for Sunday, November 2nd, and the NASCAR Winston West Series King Taco 200 scheduled for Saturday, November 1st, have been...
California Speedway's King Taco 500 Bridgestone Presents the Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford event scheduled for Sunday, November 2nd, and the NASCAR Winston West Series King Taco 200 scheduled for Saturday, November 1st, have been postponed due to the state of emergency declared in San Bernardino County and surrounding counties as a result of the wildfires burning in the area. Potential alternative dates for rescheduling the events are being reviewed, according to Bill Miller, president of California Speedway.
"We have been monitoring the fire situation since it began last week in the northern section of Fontana, approximately five miles from the speedway," Miller said. "As the fires have continued to spread, several issues were considered for us to arrive at this decision, including the proximity of the fire, the air quality, transportation issues and staffing requirements from a fire safety, medical, security and volunteer standpoint needed to stage an event. Based on the request of state and local officials, we are postponing this weekend's events, and we will try to find suitable dates to reschedule them in the future.
"In addition, we have received a few comments from our guests urging us not to hold this event. We value the opinions of our customers. It is never easy to make a decision like this, but the bottom line is safety; the safety of the guests and the competitors. Based on the current situation, we can't guarantee that this weekend will provide the appropriate atmosphere to conduct these events with the limited resources available because of the state of emergency, Miller said.
According to recent updates provided by incidentcontrol.com (a website monitoring the Grand Prix and Old Fires), more than 80,000 acres have burned in the San Bernardino area and more than 3,500 personnel are currently fighting this fire.
"We fully support the speedway's decision to not run this weekend's event," NASCAR Regional Touring Series/Weekly Racing Series Director Chris Boals said. "We appreciate their efforts, in coordination with state and local authorities, in arriving at this decision. Conducting this event with the current state of affairs in Southern California is not prudent at this time, especially with several of our Winston West Series teams located in the area. The focus should be, and rightly so, on the situation at hand, and our thoughts are with all of those affected by the fires."
Bill Miller concluded, "Public health and safety is paramount and the focus at these difficult times should be on family and helping your fellow neighbor. Citizens of Southern California have never experienced a fire of this magnitude and the devastation that it has placed upon our community. I'm committing the speedway to help in any way we can and will begin getting our staff organized to assist in relief efforts."