Cars cruise during Gordie Mannes Memorial

Korbin Thomas is the 2011 Gordie Mannes Memorial champ.

Phil Scarfo spins his souped up Mustang around the Penticton Speedway during the Gordie Mannes Memorial weekend

Phil Scarfo spins his souped up Mustang around the Penticton Speedway during the Gordie Mannes Memorial weekend

Korbin Thomas is the 2011 Gordie Mannes Memorial champ.

Thomas was the overall winner at Penticton Speedway last weekend as he won on Saturday, while Dave Hemrich was second overall and won on Sunday. Tom Berrow, the defending champ, was third.

“These guys were flying,” said Penticton Speedway owner Johnny Aantjes. “We had a great weekend. It’s my 10th or 11th year of doing the Gordie Mannes Memorial and it was our best weekend for racing, weather and enjoyment. Everything, it was the best one so far.”

Hemrich said the field was good as the ASA series possesses several strong racers. Hemrich continued his success on what he said is his favourite track.

“I’m always strong there,” said Hemrich, who won last year on the Sunday after having an incident on lap three that ended his night.

Locally, Aantjes said that Sarah Cornett-Ching (10th place) and Dan Ursel (ninth place) performed well.

“She was racing against the WCSS cars and did reasonably well,” he said. “This was probably her toughest challenge and I think she would agree that it was hard for her in this race and she stuck it out. She stayed out of trouble and she had a good weekend.”

Aantjes said the Gordie Mannes Memorial is important for the speedway as it highlights Penticton within the province.

“Some of the fastest cars in western Canada were in Penticton on the weekend,” he said. “Guys love to come to Penticton. People from the Island, northern B.C, Lower Mainland. They love this destination. It’s a crowd favourite. It’s a participants favourite.”

This weekend the speedway is expecting to get those good crowds back with four monster trucks from the Straight Up Racing Team, including Rockstar and California Kid.

In addition to the trucks, there will be freestyle motocross and a hill climb. The trucks will be crushing cars and entertaining the crowd with freestyle tricks.

“These trucks are a little stronger and they will put on a great show,” said Aantjes. “We should be pretty busy.”

Racing begins at 7 p.m. on Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are available at the gate and there is a full concession, lots of parking and a free bouncy castle for the kids. Visit for full details and directions to the track.


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