RACING: Local driver excels in Pacific Challenge Series |

RACING: Local driver excels in Pacific Challenge Series

Don Swartz, left, poses with a young fan and the flagman after winning a Pacific Challenge Series Trophy Dash race in Ukiah.
Submitted to The Union |

Don Swartz has been racing cars on and off for the past 35 years.

Recently, the Grass Valley native and owner of Swartz Diesel used that experience to rise to the top tier of the Pacific Challenge Series, where he competes in late model racing.

Swartz showcased his racing acumen last weekend at the Pacific Series Challenge’s final points race of the season in Ukiah, taking sixth overall in the main event and winning the Trophy Dash race.

The Trophy Dash is a six-lap race between the top six qualifiers.

Swartz was quick to give credit to his team.

“It’s the team,” he said. “A lot of it is the spotters, the crew, crew chief and we build everything in house.”

This was the first year in which Swartz has raced late model cars and the acclimation has been quick. Swartz took fifth out of 52 drivers in the points standings. In the 11-race series, Swartz finished in the top-10 in the main event six times, with his best performance coming July 4 at the Stockton Speedway when he placed fourth overall.

As for what keeps the 51-year-old climbing into the driver’s seat race after race.

“It’s the adrenaline rush,” he said.

Next up for Swartz and his No. 33 car is a trip to Roseville’s All American Speedway Oct. 17 for the Toyota/NAPA Auto Parts 150 event, a Bill McAnally promotion that will feature a Pacific Challenge Series race as well as several others.

To contact Sports Editor Walter Ford, call 530-477-4232 or email

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