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Saugus Speedway
LA's place to race
Saugus Speedway in 2007
Location Saugus, Santa Clarita, California
Broke ground 1927
Opened 1939
Closed July 19, 1995[1]
Major events
Asphalt Oval
Length 0.54 km (0.333 mi)
Banking flat
Asphalt Figure 8 infield
Saugus Speedway (2009)

Saugus Speedway is a 1/3 mile racetrack in Saugus, California on a 35-acre (140,000 m2) site. The track hosted one NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event in 1995, which was won by Ken Schrader.[2] Schrader became the first NASCAR driver to win in a race in all three of the sanctioning body's major series, for he had previously won in the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series.[3]


The track started out as a rodeo arena called Baker Ranch Stadium in 1927. Its construction was announced in December 1926. It was owned by Roy Baker, brother of shoe businessman C. H. Baker. The stadium held 18,000 spectators. During the Great Depression, it was sold in 1930 to Cowboy actor Hoot Gibson. He used the stadium for movie sets. The stadium was sold to Paul Hill in 1934. The valley that the stadium was in got flooded in 1937. Debris from the flood was too much for Hill to deal with, so the bank got the property.[4]

William Bonelli purchased it and renamed Bonelli Stadium. In 1939, Bonelli started hosting open wheel racing on the flat dirt surface. Crowds of 10,000 to 12,000 watched drivers such as Walt Faulkner, Mel Hansen, Allen Heath, Johnny McDowell, Jack McGrath, Danny Oakes, Troy Ruttman, and Bill Vukovich.[4] The track was part of the United Racing Association in 1940 and 1941. The last race before World War II was held on June 30, 1942. The track was unused in 1943 and 1944, like all racetracks in the United States. The track was the first circuit on the West Coast of the United States to host a post-war race when it reopened on September 9, 1945.[4] Bill Vukovich won the race. Nine races were held that season, and Vukovich was crowned the champion.[4]

The track was paved in 1946, but the pavement was removed and the track returned to dirt. Midget car racing was the national sensation in 1946, drawing large crowds to the track. Roadsters were the main class raced at the track from 1947 until 1950, until midget cars came back.[4] The grandstands in the backstretch needed repairs, so the grandstands from Gilmore Stadium were installed after the track closed in 1950.[4] From 1951 to 1955, the roadsters and midget cars shared the track equally, with occasional rodeos and circuses.[4] The track was paved for a second time in 1956.[4] The first stock car racing event on the track happened in 1957. It was promoted by Tony Coldeway, who later formed the Pacific Racing Association. 23 cars and 523 spectators came to the event.[4] The track became mainly used for stock car events after that event. It featured USAC stock cars, NASCAR Winston West Series, and the NASCAR Southwest Tour.[5] It also hosted the third race in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series history during the series' first year on April 15, 1995. Ken Schrader beat Geoffrey Bodine by 1.7 seconds.[6] The race had the slowest speed in Craftsman Truck Series history with an average speed of 43.526 miles per hour (70.048 kilometers per hour).[7] The track closed unexpectedly on July 19, 1995 in the middle of the season after the grandstands had been red-tagged and condemned by the County of Los Angeles, and have since been torn down.

Current use[edit]

The track hosts weekly swapmeets on Sundays, and flea markets on Saturday and Tuesday. The (Saugus) Santa Clarita Swap Meet features over 600 vendors and 15,000 people each Sunday since 1963.[8] The track hosts numerous special events and festivals, including car shows, antique appraisals, and concerts. The track has been used for numerous films and television scenes.

Notable drivers[edit]


  1. ^ Osmer, Harold; Lyn Pherigo. Saugus Speedway Scrapbook. Chatsworth, California, United States: Harold Osmer Publishing. ISBN 0-9659533-4-3. 
  2. ^ Craftsman Truck Series track history at racing-reference.info
  3. ^ 10 years tough; July 25, 2005, Cup Scene Daily; Retrieved December 14, 2007
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i Wilkings, Marshall; Lyn Pherigo. A Tip of the Hat to Saugus Speedway Champions. Santa Clarita Valley Historical Society. Retrieved 2007-12-10. 
  5. ^ Winners of notable races in the track's history, Retrieved December 14, 2007
  6. ^ From the archives, April 7, 2004, Retrieved December 14, 2007
  7. ^ NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Notes (Week of July 14), July 18, 1997, Retrieved December 14, 2007
  8. ^ Saugus Speedway, Retrieved December 12, 2007
  9. ^ a b Woodside still on track; ex-Saugus Speedway star races today at California Speedway; June 21, 1997; Dave Desmond, Daily News; Retrieved December 12, 2007

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°24′59″N 118°31′40″W / 34.416360°N 118.527881°W / 34.416360; -118.527881

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saugus_Speedway — Please support Wikipedia.
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2963 videos foundNext > 

Saugus Speedway Practice 1972

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Created on July 24, 2010 using FlipShare.

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Saugus Speedway, 1988, main event, with Bobby Allison_Movie1_Full.mpg

1988 main event, with Bobby Allison.

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Jeff Best takes an historical look back at the Saugus Speedway in Saugus, California and what the track is known for in 2010.

Saugus Speedway September 30th 1989



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5-4-91 main event.

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43 news items

LA Daily News
Thu, 19 Mar 2015 15:30:00 -0700

... hosted NASCAR and IndyCar races in their heyday, the list includes such legendary venues as Ascot Park, El Cajon Raceway, Mesa Marin (Bakersfield), Carlsbad, Route 66 Raceway (Victorville), L.A. County Raceway (Palmdale) and Saugus Speedway.
Santa Clarita Valley Signal
Fri, 27 Mar 2015 02:00:31 -0700

Saugus Speedway has simply relocated to Soledad Canyon Road. All traffic signs and warnings (not just those red-light camera poles) are meant to warn drivers, but cell phone use and texting continue to be “OK to do,” according to motorists' behavior ...


Wed, 25 Mar 2015 13:37:30 -0700

Up north, Saugus Speedway, located in the middle of nowhere amidst the hills used in countless cowboy movies, was built in 1937 as a dirt track, and paved in 1954. Saugus, basically a flat, parking-lot-sized oval reminiscent of Flat Rock Speedway in ...


Thu, 05 Jun 2014 13:28:38 -0700

Gentle Barn, a nonprofit animal rescue and rehabilitation sanctuary in Saugus, will host a High Octane Charity Show on Saturday, June 14, at the Saugus Speedway. Co-hosted by Poison drummer Rikki Rockett and R-Technique's Christopher Haydostian, the ...


Tue, 18 Nov 2014 14:18:45 -0800

The Santa Clarita Swap Meet invites you to bring your clean, gently used coats and jackets to the Saugus Speedway, Friday – Tuesday between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm. The process is simple: you drop off your extra coat, receive a FREE Sunday Shopper ...

Daily Sparks Tribune

Daily Sparks Tribune
Mon, 22 Dec 2014 15:45:24 -0800

"I hooked up with a guy, through the go-kart success, who owned a stock car at Saugus Speedway." His first time in a stock car was in 1983 at a mechanics race when a car owner gave him the chance to drive one. "I just remember getting into a stock car ...
Victorville Daily Press
Tue, 25 Nov 2014 22:48:53 -0800

Since then the event has been held at Gardena Stadium, Ascot Park, 605 Speedway, Saugus Speedway, Bakersfield Speedway, Ventura Raceway, Irwindale Speedway and now Perris, where Larsen won the 2012 running of the event. To many racing fans ...

KHTS Radio

KHTS Radio
Mon, 17 Nov 2014 13:39:56 -0800

The Santa Clarita Swap Meet invites you to bring your clean, gently used coats and jackets to the Saugus Speedway, Friday – Tuesday between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.. The process is simple: you drop off your extra coat, receive a free Sunday Shopper ...

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