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All American Speedway hires host, racing manager

Ken Brooks returns to run the front side of the house; Steve Fensler will manage the back side
By: Bill Poindexter/Roseville Press Tribune Sports Editor
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All American Speedway CEO Joan Bartosik decided to “split the house” this season.

Ken Brooks is returning to run the front of the house (the fan side), and Steve Fensler, a Wilton resident with 45 years of motor sports experience, will run the back (the racing side).

Brooks will be the speedway host and handle off-site promotions while splitting responsibilities with Bartosik, it was announced Monday. Brooks handled the role for several years before leaving for two years and serving as director of competition for the Western Scale Racing Association.

Fensler and Brooks take over for former program manager Dennis Gage, who “oversaw everything,” according to Bartosik. Gage has moved on to Silver Dollar Speedway in Chico.

In hiring Fensler to manage the racing operation, Bartosik said, “I wanted somebody who came straight from the racing world.”

And Fensler does. He started racing in 1966 and later sold racing supplies in Elk Grove. Fensler built son Jason a car, and they began racing at Stockton 99 Speedway in 1992, running in the Late Model and Grand American Modified divisions.

When the old Tri-Track Challenge series – at Stockton 99, Altamont and Madera – disbanded after 2000, Fensler teamed up with Indianapolis 500 veteran Davey Hamilton and longtime motor sports veteran Rick Gerhardt to start the Supermodified Racing League. They resurrected the Tri-Track Challenge and named it the Wild West Shootout, which ran until 2008. They sold the SRL, and for two years, Fensler has been attending races with Jason while continuing to help the SRL.

“Just the sound of his name to these racers commands instant respect,” Bartosik said, adding that Fensler will make the calls on the racing end. “I just think we’ll be more competitive. Drivers and crew people in the pit area will respond more positively to someone from their ranks, someone that understands and speaks their language. I think that’s key to keeping our car count and increasing it.”

Fensler said he thought about making a move last year but had another series going. Then, Bartosik called.

“There are really a lot of good kids that race out there,” he said Monday night. “I’m excited about Roseville. It’s been a home track for me since 1982. They have a core group of great competitors in all four divisions.”

All American plans play days this Saturday and April 9 before opening the NASCAR season with a two-day event: a Late Model race April 15 and a K&N Pro Series West program April 16.

Contact Bill Poindexter at billp@goldcountrymedia.com.