Two tracks made improvements in fan comfort as Rattlesnake Raceway in Fallon put in full bathrooms and improved its bleachers. Lovelock Speedway did the same and also put full restrooms in its pit area.
After seeming dead and gone, the former Reno-Fernley Raceway was saved by the efforts of Vukie Wilson and Matt Ramthun. A bunch of volunteers pitched in as well and track's name was changed to 95A Speedway.
Over in Fallon, the group led by Chris Lumsden installed a smaller track on the infield for their new Outlaw Kart series.
Last spring, Anthony Guerra started the Amsoil Northern Nevada Outlaw Kart series. These little winged racers are the prefect nurseries for younger drivers with classes from beginner to 500cc machines.
Although the 500cc division kind of faded and the number of 250cc racers fell off, the young racers always put on a show for the fans.
In the end Sarah Anderson, Caleb Gonzalez, Jacob Dias, Zachary Cail and Nick Rogers won their respective championships. And before the season ended, kart racer Lee Ketten Jr., started racing a Gen-X car.
The 95A Speedway also installed an Outlaw Kart track but had only two divisions, beginner and intermediate. Here again, the youngsters put on a show of fast and furious racing.
When the season ended Dale Creiglow was the Beginner champ while Katie Robertson scored the Intermediate title.
At 95A Speedway, there were some epic races and some of the best came when Shawn Natenstedt faced off with Jake Holland. Fans were treated to several wheel-to-wheel battles that went right down to the checkered flag.
In the end, Natenstedt claimed the IMCA Modified championship. Adding to his standout season, was his wife Missy, a champion driver in her own right, winning IMCA Rookie of the Year honors.
The Pro Stock division had the closest finish afer Gary Nevers managed a two-point advantage over runner up Robby Grace. Other champions were Royce Goetz in Hobby Stocks, Justin McIlvain in Mod Minis, Shane Ramthun in Dwarfs and once again Travis Barr topped the Pure Stock Minis.
At Rattlesnake Raceway, both Wade Lumsden and Jake Holland swapped the points lead during the season. But when the dust settled, Holland claimed the IMCA Modified title while Missy Natenstedt won her second Rookie of the Year title.
Scott Hammond was the Rat Mod champion while Al Bishop Jr. and Pete Olsen claimed the Gen X and Hobby Stock titles.
Rattlesnake also hosted the first two rounds of the Iron Man IMCA series sponsored by racer Steve Evenson's Law office.
Lovelock began the season with high hopes although the track was plagued with low car counts. Still, the racing was hard and fast in this bullring.
At season's end, Jeff Macedo was IMCA Modified track champion. Bob Cooney topped the sprint cars. Loren Bianchi claimed the B Mod title while Bobby Gibson and Michael Ellison were the Dwarf Car and Hobby Stock champs.
The track also hosted the third and fourth rounds of the Iron Man series.
In Quincy, Calif., the American Valley Speedway's season featured two special events, the Civil War 360 Sprint Car series and the annual Dwarf Car Regional.
The track had a unique outcome to its season, as two of its champions are women. Erica Harmon claimed the IMCA Modified championship while Brittney Nieman was the Pure Mini Stock champ and Joe Frock the Dwarf Car title.
Closer to home, the Northern Nevada Kart Club had a full season, ending with its final race under the lights at Desert Park Raceway. For the second year in a row, Dave Schilt and Stephanie Lienau battled for the Senior Clone title and, once again they finished in that order.
The club's new vice president Mitch Kennedy, in his final season of racing, scored his fourth Formula 125 championship. Cody McKinney was headed for a perfect season in Formula 80 Senior until a problem in the final race gave the victory to a determined Steve Dow.
At the annual awards banquet, McKinney was named as the club's Karter of the Year, a special honor for any NNKC member.
For the second year, the Cal-Neva Extreme rock crawling series hosted two events above the Exit 28 motocross track. The Valley Off Road Racing Association (VORRA) brought its desert events back to the region, including a 500-mile race.
New this year was Baja racer Roger Norman bringing his High Desert Racing Association out to U.S.A. Parkway to host the Eldorado Fireworks 500.
For the first time the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing series came here and used the new Wild West Motorsports Park, located north of I-80 above the Mustang exit. Over 7,000 spectators were on hand for the two-day event, which was televised on a delayed basis.
The two wheels series also provided its share of action.
Sierra Motocross Racing Association (SMRA) sanctioned events from the Honey Lake Motocross Park, east to Winnemucca and all the way down to Hawthorne.
Closer to home, Exit 28 motocross track hosted its annual Dealer Challenge series in the spring. In the summer, a new sanctioning body was formed when the Reno Motocross Association (RMA) was formed.
With the exception of Honey Lake, most of RMA's evens were at Exit 28.
Desert racers in the MRANN series also competed all over the region. Coming back from retirement, Dennis Belingheri, "the Desert Fox," won his fourth points title.
Looking into 2013 the racing should be just as intense with some new things to add to the excitement.
The Outlaw Karts continue to grow and draw youngsters ready to earn their spurs in dirt track racing. The new B Mod or Northern Sport Mods are showing promise of growth as this type of car will race at all our area tracks.
However, the biggest impact will come from the arrival of the King of the West sprint car series. While most of its events will be at 95A, now renamed the Tahoe, Reno, Fernley Speedway, there will be a pair of two-day shows in Fallon at Rattlesnake Raceway, which also again hosts the first two rounds of the IMCA Iron Man series.
KWS cars are just like those used in the World of Outlaws series so area fans will be treated to some hard, fast wheel-to-wheel racing in 2013.
Over the winter, riders, drivers and crew members will be hard at work preparing for the new season. Once again motocross and desert racers will start the new racing year in February followed by the cars and karts.
Then, area tracks and venues will echo with the sound of spring, as the racing season resumes.
• 95A Speedway:
IMCA Modifieds - Shawn Natenstedt
Rookie of the Year - Missy Natenstedt
Pro Stocks - Gary Nevers
Rookie of the Year - Dwight Bolton
Hobby Stocks - Royce Goetz
Rookie of the Year - Derrek Ramthun
Mod Minis - Justin McIlvain
Rookie of the Year - Robert Reader
Dwarf Cars - Shane Ramthun
Pure Stocks - Travis Barr
Rookie of the Year - Jozay Robertson
Outlaw Karts - Dale Creiglow (Beginner), Katie Robertson (Intermediate.)
• Rattlesnake Raceway Champions:
IMCA Modifieds - Jake Holland
Rat Mods - Scott Hammond
Hobby Stocks - Pete Olsen
Gen-X - Al Bishop Jr.
Amsoil Northern Nevada Outlaw Karts:
Beginner - Sarah Anderson
Intermediate - Caleb Gonzalez
Box Stock - Jacob Dias
250cc - Zachary Cail
500cc - Nick Rogers
• Lovelock Speedway Champions:
IMCA Modifieds - Jeff Macedo
360 Sprint Cars - Bob Cooney
B Modifieds -Loren Bianchi
Hobby Stocks - Michael Ellison
Dwarf Cars - Bobby Gibson
• Northern Nevada Kart Club Champions
Jr. 2 Clone - Dean Andrews
Clone - Dave Schilt
Tag Novice - Gary Guzelis
Tag Jr. - Issac Wyatt
Tag Masters - Dan Harris
F-80cc Sr. - Cody McKinney
125 Stock Moto - Mitch Kennedy