As the close of the 2023 racing season loomed on the horizon, the roar of engines came alive once more at Saskatchewan’s King’s Park Speedway, marking a poignant moment of camaraderie, passion and family heritage.
For many participants like the famous Andretti’s, Earhardt’s and Villeneuve’s, racing is deeply ingrained in the family lineage. Jade Maertens, one of the drivers, eloquently summed up this shared sentiment.
“My papa was the first in our family to race, soon followed by Uncle Todd, my dad, my sister Tanisha, and even my mom,” Maertens said. “Racing always brings my family together, it’s a collective cheer we share. Racing against my dad? There’s a unique thrill in that.”
Kurtis Christenson, another driver, shared a story steeped in profound memories and an enduring connection with his late father. “It’s more than just racing. My father’s old car— which was sold and lost for years after his passing was found by my cousin, Jeff Fink, the president here. I purchased it back and have been driving it for the past two years.”
He continued, shedding light on the emotional significance the car held, “I pestered my father for years to let me drive this race car when I was younger… There’s an almost sacred sentimental value it holds for me. Being here, competing, with his spirit by my side… He is, in a way, racing with us every single day.”
Christenson and his siblings continue to rev the engine in dedication to their late father, each race creating a moving tribute in his honor.
The ultimate event, aptly titled “Run all your junk race”, is slated for September 23rd in Lamar, marking the grand finale of this emotionally charged and deeply cherished racing season.