Many of the top series and top drivers in the country have visited Deer Creek Speedway in the 17 years the Queensland family has owned and operated the 3/8-mile track near Spring Valley.
But Tuesday will mark another “first” for a track that has been recognized as one of the best in the country.
For the first time ever, IMCA-sanctioned cars will turn laps at Deer Creek.
And it’s not just any old race. It’s one of IMCA’s premier events.
The 27th annual Harris Clash will not only be held in USRA/Wissota country, but it will be held outside of Iowa for the first time.
More than 110 drivers have pre-registered for the event, which is scheduled to begin with hot laps at 6:15 p.m. and racing at 7 p.m. Two classes of cars will race; the IMCA Modifieds will run for a $3,000 winner’s purse, while the IMCA SportMods will race for a $1,000 winner’s check.
“This will be a historical event. Deer Creek is one of the tracks that ranks right up there when you talk about dirt-track facilities,” IMCA President Brett Root said. “I think this is going to be a stellar event, possibly the biggest one-day event Deer Creek experiences this year.
“The history of the Clash and the reputation of Deer Creek set the stage for a pretty impressive night of IMCA racing.”
Drivers from as far away as California, Texas and Arizona have registered to race in the Clash, which started in 1992 in Webster City, Iowa. A familiar name to area racing fans — Kelly Shyrock — won that year’s race.
The event has since moved around Iowa, being held in Boone in 1994, then in Knoxville until 2015, when it moved back to Webster City. After holding it there for the past three years, it was moved to Deer Creek this summer.
“Unfortunately we don’t sanction Deer Creek weekly,” Root said, “but with an event of this magnitude at a facility like this and where the Queensland family has such an outstanding reputation, I think there are many IMCA racers looking forward to competing there with their own equipment.”
As of late this week, 61 Modified drivers and 52 SportMod drivers have registered for the Harris Clash, an annual one-day event that is sanctioned by the IMCA and promoted by Bob Harris Enterprises. Harris created the event 26 years ago.
Blooming Prairie’s Mark Noble is among the past champions; he won the race in 1996 at Knoxville.
“The Harris Clash is like Super Nationals in that it moved around a bit and landed at Knoxville where the opportunity for a rain date was almost non-existent,” Root said. “It moved back to its original venue in Webster City, but unfortunately Hamilton County Speedway is no longer the type of facility an event of this caliber demands.”
Among the drivers registered to compete are Jacob Bleess (Chatfield), former Deer Creek track champion Adam Hensel (Baldwin, Wis.), Jake Timm (Minnesota City), Noble and Shryock. Track regular Jared Boumeester (Waseca) is registered to race in the SportMods division.
The pit gates are scheduled to open at 3 p.m. Tuesday, with the grandstand gates set to open at 4 p.m.
Tickets are $20 for adults and $5 for children age 12 and younger.