MERIDIAN, Idaho – Sierra Jackson is hoping things will be different this time around when she and her Canadian-American Western Winged Sprintcar Series MVScompetitors visit Twin Falls.

The ASA-sanctioned open-wheel series starts its season Saturday at Magic Valley Speedway with Round 1 of the Northwest Asphalt Sprintcar Speedweek.

The 1/3rd-mile oval is the same place the WWS drivers were supposed to start their inaugural season a year ago on the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend.

But Mother Nature had other ideas.

Specifically, rain … and lots of it.

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Current Meridian Speedway points leader, Bryan Warf tests on Friday night for Speedweek Opener

The forecast is much different for the 2013 season opener.

“The weather is supposed to be fairly nice,” Jackson said. “75 and sunny.”

Jackson didn’t let a little rain ruin her season a year ago. Even though she only picked up one victory in a 10-race season, the Middleton, Idaho racer took advantage of teammate Johnny Giesler’s bad luck on the final night of the season to with the championship by a scant three points.

Admittedly, she was at a loss to explain how she could take the championship against Giesler, a Meridian, Idaho driver who led all racers with four WWS wins a year ago.

“I honestly think it was just better average finishes maybe,” the 20-year-old said. “I’m not 100 percent sure, either. I was actually kind of surprised.”

It was Jackson’s second series title in as many years. She won the ASA Northwest Sprintcar Racing Association crown in 2011.

Saturday will mark the first winged sprintcar race at Magic Valley Speedway in three years.

Jackson set the track record with a 12.062-lap on July 31, 2010.

The record could be in jeopardy. Jackson said she’s champing at the bit for a shot at the track.

“We have a completely different car and motor than when we broke the track record,” the Spiers Construction driver said. “Hopefully we can scale it and go out and break the record again.

Jackson won’t take advantage of Friday’s practice session, though.

“I don’t think it will be too detrimental, but that’s just a big hope,” she said of the lack of extra track time.

“I think it shouldn’t be too bad. I think (race officials will allow) two or three practice sessions (Saturday), and we should be able to dial the car in by then.”

Giesler, who like his Spiers Construction teammate, won’t make the early trip is concerned about his competitors getting giddy because of their first time out in the WWS campaign.

“The biggest thing about Speedweek is making it through Twin Falls because everyone is going to be antsy and wanting to win the race in the first lap,” the 24-year-old said.

The Speedweek Opener at Magic Valley Speedway kicks off a five-race series that will stretch out over seven days and three racetracks.

Tickets for Saturday’s race are $22 for adults, $20 for military personnel with ID and senior citizens and $7 for children ages 6-12. Children 5 and younger get in free.

A family package good for two adults and up to four children ages 6-12 is available for $54.

The gates open at 3 p.m., with qualifying at 5:30 p.m. and racing at 7 p.m.

For more information on Magic Valley Speedway, visit www.magicvalleyspeedway.com.

More information on the Canadian-American Western Winged Sprintcar Series can be found at www.wingedsprints.com.

 

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