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Garcia Motorsports takes over as Speedway promoter in Cortez

Motorsport events are back in full swing in Cortez at the Fairgrounds Speedway. (Journal file photo)
Focus turns to attracting fans, participants

Motorsport events are back in full swing in Cortez at the Fairgrounds Speedway this summer with new promotors Garcia Motorsports.

Led by racer Julian Garcia, Jr., the event will look like it has in recent years, but with a focus on attracting more spectators and fans.

“No significant changes,” Garcia said, “just kinda running the event structured like it has been the past, really, 10 years. The only difference is we’re trying to get more participants as we can get them. We’re trying to just gather as many people as we can to get the numbers up for the racers.”

Races take place every summer at the Montezuma County Fairgrounds track, and this season’s races are halfway over. The first two events took place in May and the beginning of June, and two events remain.

The next will be July 8 and 9, and the last, Aug. 26 and 27. The pit gate opens at 4 p.m., grandstands open at 6:30 p.m., and the first race takes off at 7:30 p.m.

There are eight race classes with two races in each class. The classes are dwarf/modlite, youth sport compact, IMCA hobby, stock, sport compact, northern sport modified and modified.

The first race consists of eight laps, and the main event is 20 laps. The winner of the main event gets the winning purse and accumulates track, state and regional points.

Local and aspiring racers are welcome to enter, and fans also will see out-of-state names they recognize. Garcia, who has raced for 20 years, races in the IMCA modified division along with his father, Julian Garcia Sr.

Other big names at events include Regan Tafoya (IMCA modified), Julie Keeler (IMCA northern sport modified), and Rex Higgins (IMCA northern sport modified).

“We have locals that own cars around this area, and we also get out-of-state participants that also come and participate on the weekends we race,” Garcia said.

Regan Tafoya, shown in a file photo, is back at Fairgrounds Speedway in Cortez. (Journal file photo)
Drivers battle for position in this file photo taken at Fairgrounds Speedway. (Journal file photo)

Anyone can participate if they have a car that adheres to track rules.

In the International Motor Contest Association division, cars must conform to IMCA guidelines, and drivers must possess an IMCA competitor’s license.

For non-IMCA races, cars must abide by track rules, and drivers must pay a fee at the pit gate and have required race safety equipment.

For those who wish to experience the action on the sidelines, tickets are available at the front gate of the track. It is recommended to arrive 30 minutes to an hour before the race starts.

Children 5 years old and younger can attend the event for free. Tickets are $5 for fans age 6-12, and $15 for fans 13 and up.

Senior citizens and military tickets are $12. For those who hope to get a little closer to the race action, a pit pass is $35 or $120 for a reserved pit stall for all eight racing classes.

Overnight camping is optional for a nightly fee of $10.

The Wigglin’ Pig and End of Trail Catering will also be on-site with hot food for purchase.