Starting a New Year

Starting a New Year

The 2022 weather at Thunderhill has been different from recent years with a 160% increase in the snowpack in the mountains to our east and just over 10 inches of rain in an area where 14 to 19 inches is the yearly average. Despite this optimistic data, hydrologists here still advise caution as to water usage going forward. I take some of this as the “sky is falling” mentality. Some people just cannot get past worst-case scenario.

The wet weather makes Thunderhill Park green and beautiful upt o the month of May depending on, you guessed it, the weather.  The track has been green that long but notall that often. When it starts to turn to golden California brown, it transitions in a matter of days depending on, you guessed it, the weather.

During the green time it has been my pleasure to secure the assistance of long time SCCA racer Woody Yerxa of nearby Colusa. He flies me over he property in his helicopter so we can take aerial photos of the property, all surfaces, and sometimes the surrounding area. Many of you have seen these photos in the Thunderhill yearbooks that come out as often as the track turns green, once a year. These pictures have also appeared in the Wheel sometimes. Years from now those running the track and those writing about its history will thank us for taking and storing copious numbers of photos of the growth and development of the track through the years. The yearbooks in themselves are an annual documentation of the evolution of the track with photos and stories about what happened in the previous year. Most of you got a copy of this yearbook in the US Mail courtesy of the track. We hope you enjoyed it and that all we do here serves as a means of keeping you in the loop about what is happening at your track.

2021 will end in the black at Thunderhill when the books are completed and the reviews done. This will be the 28th year that Thunderhill has shown a profit, no small achievement given all the wild and crazy things we have had to deal with during the last few years. All of us here are proud to say that we kept all of our employees on the payroll during each of the pandemic periods in the nation. For this we received PPPA funding and hope to receive Employee Retention credits someday.  While we did the PPPA funding request in house we turned to Patrick, Buzarellos and Kendrick for help with the ERC funding application.  

When you return to Thunderhill Park we invite you to cross the bridge that goes from the north paddock to the hill located in the center of turn nine, ten, eleven and fourteen. It is mostly new and the renovation was done in-house. Thanks to team members Lee Noll, Bob Maybell, Bryan Tharp, Sean Crandall, and Rod Powell for getting it all done. We considered contracting this job out, but the quotes for the job should have had the Golden Gate Bridge in the customer slot.

The final rental data for 2021, based on counting each of the five surfaces that we rent and calling a day a day instead of an event, came out at 318 event days on the three mile, 261 on the two and 410 event days on the skid pads. Rallycross added six more days to the total which topped out at995 event days in 2021.