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Doing Some Backtracking at Irwindale

March 25, 1999|SHAV GLICK

Motor racing is nothing new to Irwindale, according to race historian Harold Osmer, author of "Where They Raced, Auto Racing venues in Los Angeles, 1900-1990."

Two tracks, both called San Gabriel Valley Dragstrip, operated from 1958-58 and 1961-63 under separate managements and at two locations.

Go-Kart Raceway, the first purpose-built race track for go karts, was built at Irwindale Avenue and Montoya Street by Duffy Livingston. It was in business from 1958 to 1978.

A third drag strip, Irwindale Raceway, operated from 1965 to 1973 until it was closed to make room for the Miller brewery.

The only oval track in the area was Speedway 605, a paved half-mile with 5,000 seats, on Rivergrade Road, across the 605 Freeway from the new Irwindale Speedway. It was closed and torn down in 1977.

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