After finishing on the podium here last year, Mason Cotter finished two spots better in his second attempt at the California 300 Youth 1000 Race on Friday. Cotter would take the checkered flag over 2022 winner Chaden Zane Minder, starting his sixth lap prior to the timed cutoff as Minder and the rest of the remaining field would complete their fifth lap after the clock ran out.
Of the three Youth races on the schedule for the weekend, Friday’s Youth 1000 event featured the most powerful UTVs, the biggest lap, and the longest duration. With one hour on the clock, racers would complete as many laps as they could on an 8.24-mile course. Sixth place starter Jacob Williamson would post the fastest first lap with a 12:07.769, nine seconds ahead of Cotter, and setting the stage for a showdown to see if anyone could make it to a sixth lap.
Cotter would take the lead on Lap 2 with a 12:01, but Minder would crack the 12-minute mark that same lap to go from fifth to third, and from there the showdown was on. They’d continue to get faster as the race pushed on, with Minder taking second spot over for good on the third lap, but Cotter found another gear in the second half of the race. Three straight sub-12 minute laps allowed him to start a sixth lap, while the rest of the field would fall short of crossing the line in time to match him.
Minder would hang onto second over Williamson despite giving up nearly 25 seconds on the final lap. Ryder Barnaby came within 40 seconds of Williamson for the final spot on the podium, while all but two of the race starters made it to the finish line.
Unofficial top finishers from the 2023 California 300 Youth 1000 Race are as follows:
- #Y1610 Mason Cotter, 6 laps, 1:09:42
- #Y1069 Chaden Zane Minder, 5 laps, 1:00:41
- #Y1037 Jacob Williamson, 5 laps, 1:00:49
- #Y1311 Ryder Barnaby, 5 laps, 1:01:27
- #Y1121 Paxton Schendel, 5 laps, 1:06:28
The 2023 California 300 wraps up its Friday race program with qualifying for the top cars, trucks, and UTVs. Live timing and tracking is available all weekend long at live.thecalifornia300.com. For more information on the California 300, including a full schedule of events, visit www.thecalifornia300.com.