Peters, Knight, And Steele Collect IBEW Local 659...
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Peters, Knight, And Steele Collect IBEW Local 659...

Peters, Knight, And Steele Collect IBEW Local 659...

5/21/2024 -
Peters, Knight, And Steele Collect IBEW Local 659 Night Wins At Southern Oregon By Ben Deatherage White City, Oregon- Wrapping up the second night of
Wheeler Wins Saturday Showdown At Southern Oregon...

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Garen Linder Dominates Dave's Home Supply Iron Hea...

Garen Linder Dominates Dave's Home Supply Iron Hea...

5/18/2024 -
Garen Linder Dominates Dave's Home Supply Iron Head Sprints Feature At Southern Oregon Speedway By Ben Deatherage White City, Oregon-The Dave's Home S

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Josh King Dominates Southern Oregon Dwarf Car Feature White City, Oregon- The Stone Heating and Air Dwarf Cars complimented the Dave’s Home Supply Iron Head Sprints at Southern Oregon Speedway on Friday, May 17th.  Twenty entries filled the pit area of the 3/8-mile clay...more
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History

Southern Oregon Speedway: A Field Of Dreams For The Racers For Over 20 Years

The Medford area has a long and storied history of racing going back many years to the famed Medford Speedway. When the last track closed, the search was on for a new location. It was found at the Jackson County Sports Park in neighboring White City. John Skinner built the 3/10th mile banked clay oval track and opened it in April of 1996.

The divisions featured that first season included the Dirt Modifieds, Pro Stocks, Mini Stocks and Winged Sprint Cars. The track also hosted visits from the Late Models, SODCA Dwarf Cars and other groups. Through the years, big Late Model and Sprint Car events have taken place at the speedway, and two of the biggest events at the track are the Dwarf Car Nationals and the Lon Skinner Memorial race for Modifieds, now in it's 21st year.

In the early years of Modified racing, the track ran the Modifieds with wings on the cars. In more recent years, Southern Oregon Speedway has run the division under IMCA sanctioning and added an IMCA Sport Mod division as a way to help breathe new life into some of the older cars in the area.

A man who will certainly be in the discussion of "greatest ever" at Southern Oregon Speedway is Mark Wauge. Wauge has won six of the first 20 IMCA Modified championships at the speedway. Tom Glover opened the track with a championship and won another one two years later. Hard chargers like Don Estermado, Brian Poppa, Jon DeBeneditti and Travis Perry are others who have written their names on the Southern Oregon Speedway Wall Of Champions in the Modified division. Poppa got his start by winning a Pro Stock championship before moving up, and another Pro Stock graduate, Albert Gill, enters 2016 as a two time defending IMCA Modified champion.

Here's a look at the IMCA Modified Wall Of Champions:

Modified Champions

1996 Tom Glover
1997 Dennis Silva
1998 Tom Glover
1999 Don Estermado
2000 Mark Wauge
2001 Jay Hinton Jr.
2002 Jon DeBeneditti
2003 Jeremy Richey
2004 Brad Alfrey
2005 Mark Wauge
2006 Brian Poppa
2007 Mark Wauge
2008 Justin Holt
2009 Mark Wauge
2010 Travis Peery
2011 Mark Wauge
2012 Mark Wauge
2013 Dustin Knight
2014 Albert Gill
2015 Albert Gill

Sometimes there are races that can make the entire season for a driver. The Lon Skinner Memorial Race is such an event. When the track opened in 1996, John Skinner wanted to have a special race in honor of his father. This race has became perhaps the biggest event on the West Coast, and drivers flock to Southern Oregon Speedway from throughout Oregon, California, Washington and other states to compete. With $5000 to win last year and again this year, this race is the one they all want to win.

It's a Californian by the name of Bobby Hogge IV who is a four time champion, and he will enter the next race this September as the defending champion. Fellow Californian Richard Papenhausen has two wins and has entered every race since this event began. Brian Poppa tops the local driver's winners list with three victorires, while Mark Wauge, Don Estermado and Matt Duste are among the other winners. It wasn't until the seventh event that we had our first repeat winner, Richard Papenhausen. Bobby Hogge IV bears the distinction of being the only driver to win three of these races in a row.

Past Lon Skinner Memorial Winners

1996 Ron Haggard
1997 Scott Lenz
1998 Tom Glover
1999 Richard Paprnhausen
2000 Don Estermado
2001 Brian Poppa
2002 Richard Papenhausen
2003 Dennis Silva
2004 Scott Weldon
2005 Brian Poppa
2006 Mark Wauge
2007 Jon DeBeneditti
2008 Bobby Hogge IV
2009 Bobby Hogge IV
2010 Bobby Hogge IV
2011 Brian Poppa
2012 Matt Duste
2013 Jesse Williamson
2014 Nick Trenchard
2015 Bobby Hogge IV

The IMCA Sport Modifieds enter their fifth season at the track with two different champions. Dwayne Melvin got it started with back to back championships, but the hot driver at Southern Oregon Speedway is past Street Stock champion Jorddon Braaten, who is coming in as a two time defending champion . One of Braaten's closest competitors will be Mike Medel, who is the defending Oregon State IMCA Sport Mod champion.

Sport Mod Champions

2012 Dwayne Melvin
2013 Dwayne Melvin
2014 Jorddon Braaten
2015 Jorddon Braaten

The Sprint Cars have had at least a race at Southern Oregon Speedway each season. The track has hosted some big Sprint Car events through the years, including visits from the the World of Outlaws and races during Northwest Speedweek. There were 12 championship seasons in the first 15 years, but the class fell to visitor status for the past five seasons. That changes this year. Notable championship winning drivers of the past include three time track champion Dan Menne and two time champions Randy Rodgers and Bill Nutter.

Sprint Car Champions

1996 Dan Menne
1997 Bill Nutter
2001 Chad Bauer
2002 Todd Zeitler
2003 Dan Menne
2004 T.J. Winningham
2005 Dan Menne
2006 Bill Nutter
2007 Randy Rodgers
2008 Randy Rodgers
2009 Charlie Thompson
2010 Chadd Noland

The Pro Stocks are another division that was on the track's roster when it opened for business back in 1996, There are two big names that seem to rise above the others on the Champion's List. Jimmy Walker Jr. was a force on the Pro Stock scene, and his three championships at the speedway happened during the first six seasons. The other mega star in the class was Frank Word III. Frank has won an amazing eight championships, and he did it all within a nine year span.

Two champions who have sprung up from Pro Stocks to win IMCA Modified titles are Brian Poppa and Brad Alfrey. Not to be outdone, Scott Lenz won the track's first Pro stock championship before winning the prestigious Lon Skinner Memorial race a year later. Poppa was the driver who kept Word from winning nine championships in a row when he returned to the class for a second championship. The division races at multiple tracks these days, and hard chargers like Ken Irving, Dave Everson and Jeffrey Hudson count themselves as champions. Irving is a two time champion.

Pro Stock Champions

1996 Scott Lenz
1997 Jim Walker Jr.
1998 Jim Walker Jr.
1999 Brian Poppa
2000 Brad Alfrey
2001 Jim Walker Jr.
2002 Frank Word III
2003 Frank Word III
2004 Frank Word III
2005 Frank Word III
2006 Brian Poppa
2007 Frank Word III
2008 Frank Word III
2009 Frank Word III
2010 Frank Word III
2011 Dustin Knight
2012 Ken Irving
2013 Dave Everson
2014 Ken Irving
2015 Jeffrey Hudson

Mini Stocks were there at the beginning of Southern Oregon Speedway to give the track a nice entry level division for the racers to get their feet wet. Through the years, the track has tried a few different 4 Cylinder classes, and the regular Mini Stocks are the class with the most staying power. Three notable multi time champions on the list are John Derby, David Bishop and Tracy Bradley. Derby is a four time champion, doing it four years in a row. Bishop and Bradley both won back to back championships. Two stars of recent seasons are Gary Anderson and David Marble, who have won the most recent two championships.

Brian Barns counts himself among the Mini Stock champions, and he ushered the Super 4 Mini Stock division into the speedway by winning the first two championships. The Super 4's would have an 11 year run that saw such notable two time champions as Joe Guider and Brian Johnsen. The division is returning to the fold at Southern Oregon Speedway this year.

A recent addition to the roster is the bone stock Hornet class. The rulebook for these Mini Stocks allows no modifications to the cars. These are cars that the drivers race, not race cars, as was written in the original rulebook. It's a great opportunity for new racers to come out and see what racing at Southern Oregon Sp

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