Emotional Speedway Banquet Heldadmin
Emotional Speedway Banquet Held
For Immediate Release
(Chico, CA 11/19/18) On the heels of the devastating Camp Fire, Silver Dollar Speedway and Marysville Raceway, held their 2018 Awards Banquet at Colusa Casino, Saturday November 17. The banquet which annually recognizes the achievements of competitors at the speedway for the season took the turn in 2018 of supporting the victims of the raging fire. “Many events cancelled in the aftermath of the fire, but we believed a positive setting with their friends would be beneficial, explained Speedway manager Dennis Gage. “It went beyond our expectations with fundraising, offers of assistance, electrifying speeches, and tearful hugs,” Gage concluded.
While the limelight remained the championship efforts of Andy Forsberg (Sprints), Tony Richards (Wingless), Brian Cooper (Sport Mods), Corey Hall (Street Stocks), Jeremy Langenderfer (Hobby Stocks) at Silver Dollar Speedway, and Mike Monahan (Sprints), Cameron Haney (Crate Sprints), Damian Merritt (Sport Mods), Chris Warner (Super Stocks), and Shannon Collins (Hobby Stocks) at Marysville, the theme of support for the fire victims was paramount. Collins, for example, had lost his home and was considering a move to the bordering state of Oregon, but stopped to collect his Hoosier Jacket.
Ward Habriel, a longtime fan, sponsor and supporter of Silver Dollar Speedway, had lost several homes in the fire. Habriel, also known for his leadership roles, wearing a love Paradise cap and dressed in his Paradise logo shirt offered a moving speech about how he never hesitated about rebuilding in Paradise. He was busy attending planning meetings and seeking help for himself and fellow Paradise residents. “I’m not homeless,” Habriel claimed, “I’m only Houseless.”
Another victim Mike Ficklin, a speedway top 10 finisher and longtime racer, lost his home and business in the fire, but an interested party asked it there was anyway Mike’s trophies could be replaced. She said that Mike enjoyed and was proud of his trophies. The local racers responded with a regifting program from their personal trophy collections. The trophies will be engraved with the award that it replaces and the donators name.
In addition, donations were accepted to help the community at large. Local donations came in the hundreds of dollars and Marysville Flea market and Raceway property owners James and Misty Castleberry returned $450 in championship checks to the fund-raising drive.
Even more astounding was half way across America on their banquet night, Knoxville Raceway, in Knoxville Iowa placed collection envelopes on tables for the fire victims. The Marion County Fair Board where the raceway is located offered to match the funds. A total of $4,400 came from the efforts of racers more than a thousand miles away.
This while President Trump, Governor Brown, and Governor elect Newsom toured Paradise and the Silver Dollar Fairgrounds where the president met with the press in the building the speedway uses for the same purpose.
Immense loss and devastation were replaced with good will and generosity. Traits the auto racing community is well known for.
Fundraising will continue at Tri County banks in California. All branches will accept donations or information can be obtained at www.tcbk.com or directly to www.gofundme.com/tcb-2018-camp-fire-fund. Or the speedway will assist in directing donations where needed. Contact www.silverdollarspeedway or call 530-350-7275.