Back with a bang, Redwood Outlaw Karts fills a community void

Submitted photos

By Ray Hamill — With a new name and a new enthusiasm, Outlaw Karts racing returned to the North Coast with a bang this year.

Competing locally for the first time since pre-COVID days, the local association is now called Redwood Outlaw Karts and has a new group of people in charge.

And the return to competition has been warmly welcomed by local enthusiasts.

“It’s been going pretty well,” association volunteer Bianca Jasmine said. “We’re getting the track better and there’s always more improvements needed, but it’s race-able.”

The Redwood Outlaw Karts compete at the Redwood Acres and the season began in June.

Since then there has been seven race days, with the season finale set for Sept. 16.

And the local racers are hoping to close out their first season back in several years with a large turnout.

“We brought it back for the community,” Jasmine said. “It’s something for the kids to do. We’re trying to get it back going for the kids.”

Outlaw Kart racing is open to any drivers aged five and up and features six divisions.

The younger kids can compete in the Beginner Box Stock and Box Stock divisions, while children aged 12 and up and adults can compete in the 250 Intermediate, 500 Open, Caged Clone and Flat Kart divisions.

While there are no season championships to compete for this year, there are trophies handed to the winners of all six divisions on each race day.

The return also has caught the attention of racers from outside the area, with limited opportunities to compete in Outlaw Karts throughout Northern California.

Phoenix Venza celebrates his win in the most recent Box Stock race.

Hudson Renner placed first in the most recent Beginner Box Stock race.

There are tracks in Chico, Lakeport and Red Bluff, the latter of which has a big tradition in the sport.

And that makes the Redwood Acres the only dirt track for hundreds of miles.

“The local community has been really supportive,” Jasmine said. “And with the track here we don’t have to travel three or four hours with a trailer just to race.”

According to Jasmine drivers’ safety is a priority and they always have EMTs on site for the race days.

She also believes there’s no better way to introduce kids to motor sports.

“You’ve got to be 14 to race at the Redwood Acres Raceway, but here they can start at 5,” she said.

Michael Lawrence celebrates his Flat Kart win last weekend.

It’s been a successful summer season for several local racers, including young Hudson Renner and Phoenix Venza, who placed first in the most recent Beginners Box Stock and Box Stock races, respectively, last week.

Michael Lawerence also placed first in the Flat Kart division, while Dave Ramsey placed first in the Caged Clone race.

Jasmine also thanked all of the local sponsors for their support season, including Earth It Environmental, NorCal Automotive, Valley Pacific, The Redwood Acres Raceway, Jim Redd, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Alves Inc., Hemmingson Paving solutions, Hilfiker Pipe Co., Robinson Trucking and Equipment, Zabel Enterprise LLC and Mike Flanagan, as well as all the local volunteers who helped make the season possible.

Racing for the season finale gets under way at around 3 p.m.

For more information, you can visit the Redwood Outlaw Karts Facebook page.

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