Longtime Thunderhill Raceway head boasts six-decade racing industry career
BAKERSFIELD, California (August 30, 2023) – David B. Vodden, a member of the motorsports industry for more than 60 years, has been named to the Board of Directors of the West Coast Stock Car/Motorsports Hall of Fame. Vodden, President and CEO of San Francisco Properties – including Thunderhill Raceway in Willows, California – since 1988, has been a journalist and publisher; president of several racing associations; track promoter and announcer; and car owner and competitor in a variety of racing categories. “We are excited to have David Vodden come aboard. I have known David for nearly half a century and in that period of time, he has excelled in the motorsports community,’ said Ken Clapp, Chairman and CEO of the West Coast Stock Car/Motorsports Hall of Fame. “He is a perfect fit as a director and I know he is excited about becoming a member of our board.” Vodden, a Montana native who holds an MBA in marketing/finance, began his journalism career in Southern California in 1960, writing for the racing tabloids of the era including National Speed Sport News, working for NSSN publisher Chris Economaki. As a track publicist, he wrote race reports, columns, promotional materials and yearbooks and placed advertising in print, television and radio media. Vodden was promoter/business manager of Baylands (California) Raceway Park from 1980 through its closure in 1988. He became business manager of the San Franciso Region of the Sports Car Club of America and was tasked with finding the club a permanent race track. The multi-use Thunderhill Park was built in Willows. Vodden has served as the track’s President/CEO since the facility’s opening in 1993. He recently retired. Over his career, Vodden has served in a variety of leadership and promotional roles for the California Racing Association and Northern Auto Racing Club, staging numerous events at tracks from Bakersfield to Petaluma. Vodden is the current vice mayor of Willows and previously served on the Glenn County Fair Board. He has served Rotary International as president, vice president and district representative. He is a member of the San Francisco Region SCCA Hall of Fame.
About the West Coast Stock Car/Motorsports Hall of Fame:
The West Coast Stock Car/Motorsports Hall of Fame was conceived in 2001 as a means of recognizing significant contributors and contributions to the sport of stock car/motorsports competition. The mission of the West Coast Stock Car/Motorsports Hall of Fame is founded to preserve history and heritage of the important role west coast stock car and motorsports figures have played in the sport’s development and continuation and to recognize, through annual enshrinement, of outstanding individuals and groups within the sport such as, but not limited to, designers, engineers, mechanics, drivers, race track owners, promoters, publicists and members of the motorsports media.
The Hall is a 501(c)3 charitable organization, dedicated to supporting a variety of organizations and groups from coast to coast. During its tenure, the Hall has raised more than $800,000 in the past five of its 22 years for youth, health and safety, hospitals, animal rescue, military and other charitable causes.
For more information on the West Coast Stock Car/Motorsports Hall of Fame visit: www.WestCoastStockCarHallofFame.com
Owen A. Kearns