Kern County Raceway Park delays opening 2nd time

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) - Kern County Raceway Park has delayed its opening for a second time, moving from April 20 to May 4 and now to May 18. Track officials announced the revised schedule Wednesday.

"We want to be as prepared as possible when we open," CEO and President Charlie Beard said in a news release to announce the first move to May 4.

May 4 will now serve as a Fan Appreciation Day with free admission to the grandstands to watch the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series teams practice, according to track officials.

The May 18 grand opening will feature a 100-lap NASCAR Pro Late Model feature headlining the card, along with a 50-lap CITGO Lubricants Late Model feature. INEX Legends and Bandoleros will be in action on the quarter-mile, and Mini Dwarfs will hit the pavement on the 1/8-mile inside track.

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Ownership says the half-mile and quarter-mile paved tracks will continue Bakersfield's NASCAR legacy in the wake of Mesa Marin Speedway's 2005 closure. Bakersfield businessman James Vernon led the charge to take over the partially completed Kern County Raceway Park, at Interstate 5 and Enos Lane, last year and prepared it for a full slate of races beginning this year.

Two dozen events make up the schedule of mostly Saturday night races.