For Southern California sprint car racer Eddie Tafoya Jr., the road between the west coast and Indiana is starting to look as familiar as Central Avenue in his hometown of Chino, California. For the third time in the last two months, the 23-year-old racer is making the long trek back to the Hoosier State to compete in Friday’s Jim Hurtubise Classic at the Terre Haute Action Track and Saturday’s Haubstadt Hustler at the Tri-State Speedway.
2020 was supposed to be a big year on the track for Tafoya and his father, Eddie Sr. Jr. was set for his second full season in the USAC/CRA Series after winning the Rookie of the Year Award in 2019. Sr., a past draft choice of Major League Baseball’s Pittsburgh Pirates was planning on racing at their home track, Perris Auto Speedway, in the Senior Sprint Car Series. However, the ongoing COVID crisis has prevented racing in California. Thus, the only racing for the duo has all been done by Eddie Jr.
Tafoya has appeared one time each on Terre Haute and Tri-State. That was in July on his first trip to race in Indiana during Indiana Sprint Week. At Terre Haute, which is a big, bad fast half-mile, he was anything but intimidated, qualifying 20th in the 42-car field. He was sixth in his heat race and only missed the transfer to the feature by two spots in the B Main. A few nights later in his initial appearance at Tri-State Speedway, the Chino Hills, California resident only qualified 33rd out of 40 cars. Things improved when racing began when he only missed the transfer to the A main by one spot out of his heat race. In the B main, he battled with some of the legends of Midwest racing for the final transfer spot. He seesawed in and out of the transfer spots before finishing eighth. The tenacity displayed in that B main garnered a lot of attention for the west coast racer.
Three weeks ago, Tafoya turned in his best Indiana appearance with a late-race charge that saw him advance from his mid-pack starting spot to take the final transfer into the A main at the 9th Annual Smackdown at the Kokomo Speedway. Fifty-drivers started the three-night event and only 23 qualified for the finale. Eddie Tafoya Jr. was one of them and he placed 19th in the prestigious 40-lapper.
If things go well for Tafoya and the Specialty Fasteners team this weekend, they may hang around Indiana for a week to race at I-69 Gas City Speedway and “Indiana’s Baddest Bullring,” Kokomo Speedway, on September 25th and 26th.
Fans who cannot get away to watch Tafoya in Indiana can catch all the action live on the Flo Racing website. For details, please click on the following link. https://www.floracing.com/
Information on the Terre Haute Action Track and Tri-State Speedway is listed below.
Terre Haute Action Track – 3901 S. US Hwy 41, Terre Haute, IN 47802 – (217) 764-3200 - https://terrehauteactiontrack.net/
Tri-State Speedway – 9981 South U.S. Highway 41, Haubstadt, IN 47639 – (812) 768-5995 - https://www.tristatespeedway.com/index.php
Tafoya and his team would like to thank the following sponsors for being a part of the 2020 racing effort. Specialty Fasteners, Circle Track Performance, Sprint Car Driving Experience, DRC Chassis, Ryder Racing Engines, and Benic Enterprises.
Eddie Tafoya PR