Race Director Says Increased Security Would Shut Down Races
7:35 AM, Aug 16, 2010
A race director gave 10News an up-close look at the site of an off-road crash Saturday that killed 8 people, including 4 from San Diego County.The crash at the end of the California 200 in the Mojave Desert and north of Riverside ended in tragedy, and it is a course Ron Matthews knows well.Matthews, a race director for the Barstow-based M.O.R.E. Racing, did not put on this weekend's race, but he has put on events on the same course.A few miles into the course, Matthews showed 10News the grapefruit-sized rocks that led to the horrific crash after spectators had edged close to the course."We have seen it happen," said Matthews.Matthews said at his events, signs are put up and some 20 volunteers help with crowd control. That has prevented any spectators from getting injured."We ask you nicely. If that doesn't work, we tell you. And if that doesn't work, we get the cell out and call the sheriff," said Matthews.However, Matthews acknowledged that does not stop everyone."They get out here and feel like there's no rules," he said.The Bureau of Land Management has launched an investigation into the crash.If expensive security or barriers were mandated, Matthews believes it would shut down most of the races."We just don't have the money to survive that. None of the promoters do," he said.At a meeting with the BLM Monday morning, Matthews was told to expect drastic changes.A decision regarding possible changes is expected in about a week.