KAYSVILLE — Winter car crashes are a lot more fun when they’re intentional.
Centerville’s Full Throttle Power Sports is making demolition derbies a winter sport with its first-ever indoor derby, set for Jan. 21 at 7 p.m. at Legacy Events Center’s indoor arena. The derby, which will follow Full Throttle’s monthly motocross event, was designed to give spectators year-round access to derby mayhem.
“Demolition derbies are so much fun, but they’re so hard to get into in the summer,” said Chad Bangerter, who owns Full Throttle with his wife, Kristi. “So I thought, let’s do this in the off season.”
The couple, which also owns an outdoor track in Salt Lake, started holding winter events at Legacy to take advantage of the heated indoor space. They hold monthly motocross races and practice sessions from November to February.
“It gives the guys someplace close to ride for the winter and keeps things exciting for the audiences,” said Bangerter.
The motocross races lure riders all the way from Idaho, Wyoming and Colorado. As their success has grown, the Bangerters started thinking about adding a derby.
“Our family loves demolition derbies,” said Bangerter. “We follow them all over the state.”
At demolition derbies, cars will use different techniques to deliberately hit each other during timed heats. The goal is to permanently disable as many competing cars as possible. First prize goes to the car that stays functional the longest.
“The great thing about demolition derbies is there’s always going to be a crash,” said Bangerter. “The only question is when it is and how hard it’s going to be.”
Legacy Events Center organizers were hesitant about the condition of their indoor arena, so organizers will build an inner wall of plastic jersey barriers for the cars to hit against.
The derby itself is being run by Stirrin’ Dirt Racing, a West Haven-based group that puts on derbies all around the state. Several local businesses are sponsoring cars.
“It’s a good way to get the community involved,” said Bangerter. “A business can walk away with bragging rights if their car is still standing after the dust settles.”
If all goes well, the cars that aren’t still standing will get a second chance next month.
“If everything goes smooth and as planned, we’ll do this again in February,” he said.
Full Throttle’s motocross event is Jan. 19 and 20 starting at 10 a.m., with tickets available at the door. Tickets for the derby are available at Full Throttle Power Sports in Centerville or online at smithstix.com.
Derby organizers are holding a food drive to benefit the Open Hand Ministry of Clearfield. Anyone who brings a can of food will receive free parking. Otherwise, parking costs $2.