Welcome to Rocky Mountain Raceways
Utah has a long and siginificant history in racing and Rocky Mountain Raceways is PROUD to keep that tradition going. The history of racing in Utah began with the Bonneville Salt Flats. A long stretch of hard salt surface perfect for getting early racing automobiles to reach their top speeds. Racing began in the salt flats as early as 1925 when Ab Jenkins, driving a Studebaker, beat a special excursion train by ten minutes in a race across the flats.
Racing on the Salt Flats, 1940s, with Ab Jenkins’ Mormon Meteor III
Since that time the Bonneville Salt Flats have attracted racers from around the world and have become the site of numerous land speed records. Through the early 1930′s to the 1970′s many world land speed records were broken here. In 1938, the Englishman George Eyston’s Thunderbolt traveled more than 345 miles per hour sparking a friendly rivalry of racers between Malcom Campbell’s Blue Bird and John Cobb’s Railton. Each breaking one another’s records.
In 1968 the Bonneville Raceways officially opened it’s gates where we are currently operating today. Bonneville Raceways became a racing destination for folks all around the country and was a meeting place for race fans all over Utah. Through the 70′s to the mid 90′s, Bonneville held their infamous Fox Hunt races with a vibrant race culture where thousands of teens could park their cars next to the chain link fence and bring their coolers and watch the dragsters. During one of the annual Fox Hunt races on May 28, 1988 a riot broke out after changes in the pit, ice chest, and Alcohol rules. Scores of police officers from several jurisdictions attempted to calm the crowd after many were injured while many others were arrested. This has famously became known as the “Fox Hunt Riot.”
During this this time, many early great racers came to Bonneville. Greats like Shirley “Cha Cha” Muldowney, a pioneer in women’s drag racing with her trademark pink rail. Drag racing legend Jerry Ruth, the “king” of Northwest drag racing also raced here many times. Bonneville was surely a destination for racing greats and their fans.
In 1995 a local racing fan, Spencer Young from the Young Automotive Group approached Bonneville to buy and remodel the facility. This was the beginning of Rocky Mountain Raceways. The facility was expanded to include a state of the art quarter mile drag strip and an oval track. With a brand new facility, professionally run tracks, spectator seating and great concession facilities Rocky Mountain Raceways has kept the heart and spirit of racing in Utah alive! We have been operating for over 18 years and counting. We continue to expand and now have a Moto-Cross track with a whole new crowd and great new events. We strive to keep racing alive and well in Utah and hope to keep that deep history continuing here for many years.
One of our vintage posters from our first year. Thanks to Mike Bowcutt for saving it all these years.
See: Paul Clifton, The Fastest Men on Earth (1966); Dale L. Morgan, The Great Salt Lake (1986).