Motor Sports

Rhododendron 100 highlights opening night at Redwood Acres

Photo by Sherie Bialous

Racing returns to the Redwood Acres Raceway on Saturday with the first races of the 2023 season.

Opening night will be highlighted by the second annual Rhododendron 100 for the late models, and all five local divisions will be in action.

The winner of the 100-lap late model feature will earn $3,000, with $2,000 going to the second-placed driver, $1,500 for third and $1,000 for fourth. 

The minimum to start the race is $750.

Dane Nissen of Williams is the defending Rhododendron 100 champion after taking the checkered flag at last year’s inaugural running of the race. 

David Miller of Coquille, Oregon, is also expected to compete for the win this weekend, along with Canadian driver Darrell Midgley, who is making his first start at Redwood Acres Raceway in over 15 years. 

Local stars also expected to compete include Dennis DelBiaggio, Brandon Barnwell and Nick Ford.

The Legends, bombers, mini stocks and roadrunners will all also be in action on opening night.

The 2023 Legends season will feature the addition of an INEX National Qualifying race in July. 

Northern California has seen an influx of Legends cars and racers and numerous out-of-towners are likely to join the Redwoods Acres Raceway regulars for the big event.

The 2023 bombers division will have the unique distinction of having three female drivers racing full-time this season. 

Kadence Toland will begin her sophomore season in the division and will be hoping to earn her first main event victory.

She will be joined in the division by 2022 roadrunners champion Tanisha Ratzlaff, who will be driving Raquel Krupa’s car in 2023, as well as Lori Brown.

Tickets for Saturday’s season-opening night are $10 and can be purchased at Automasters in Eureka, Don’s Rent-All in Eureka, McKinleyville Barbershop and JC Auto in Fortuna. 

Tickets can also be purchased on or at the gate on race day.

Grandstands open at 4 p.m. with the racing getting under way at 5:30 p.m. 

The event will also be live streamed on and

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