Racing driver Darren Turner and some of his race cars



Darren Turner

 About Darren Turner

Over the years Darren has raced Formula Ford open wheel cars, road racing sedans (on pavement tracks & ice circuits), oval-track street stocks & sportsman racing cars, Late Models, and CASCAR Late Models (it's known now as the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series) .

Here is the Racing Résumé:

Darren Turner, race history/experience:  



1988 purchased Fiat 131 (found in a back alley!) stripped it, added safety equipment and went ice racing on the frozen lakes of British Columbia’s interior with an all family crew. Darren’s young wife Margo and his father Garth were his main supporters early on but brothers Dan and Dave and many friends helped out as well. Darren won seven races in 30 starts allowing him to claim rookie of the year honors in the rear wheel drive category.


1989 and 1990 Bought an Australian built Bowin Formula Ford to race in the semi-pro Canon/Yokohama road racing series in B.C. and Alberta. Enjoyed the transition to pavement racing in a touring series, and participated in the very last race at the famous and now defunct Westwood Motorsports Park.


Continued ice racing during the winters in an open category Scirroco (Fiat was sold), winning several races over the two seasons. Also, just to say we’d done it, raced the Scirroco at the Knox Mtn Hillclimb in 1989.


Darren attended the Jim Russel race school in 1990 at the Laguna Seca race course in California to further develop skills.


1991 & 1992 The cost of The Formula Ford series proved too great for Darren and his growing family, and sponsorship was difficult to find in the open wheel world at that level. A move to the Player’s GM series was considered by Darren and his Dad because of the greater sponsorship opportunities, and a deal on a one year old Camaro had been almost settled, but rumors of the series future demise kept Darren from jumping in. Too bad, as it was a great series.


Instead, a change in direction to the world of oval track Stock Cars proved a good move at the time. The races were closer to home, the costs were lower (at first) and the value to local sponsors helped with the financial burden. Several races were won, and lots of experience gained (especially doing body work) over the two seasons in the Street Stock division. Darren’s road racing and ice racing experience proved extremely valuable in the oval track world where you are always at the very limit of traction and car control.


Speaking of ice racing, this was the same time that the spec Chevette series was formed. Darren thrived in this environment. The combination of the equalization of car preparation rules and a return to the rear wheel drive that he loves netted many, many race wins and three championships over the next six or seven seasons.


1993 & 1994 After lots of success in street stocks, Darren wanted to move up a division to the Sportsman class. A Pontiac Ventura was purchased from Shane Charleton, and the old motor from the street stock was dropped in. Again the team found success, winning Rookie of the year in 1993, and several wins over the two seasons. This success just fueled the fire more. A move up to the extremely fast Late Model division was on the horizon.


During the Sportsman years, Darren met Roy Cobden at the ice races during the winter. Roy joined the team for the summer months to help on the stock car and quickly showed his technical knowledge and thirst for more. Roy’s abilities with car preparation gave Darren the confidence to make the move to the more complicated Late Models and together they started to build a car for the 1995 season.


1995 to 1999 The Late Model Super stock years. They actually won the very first race they entered with the new Camaro Late Model. It was a heat race at Spanaway Speedway in Washington. Darren, wife Margo and Roy went to that first big race just the three of them and really knew no one at this race track that was far from home. It was a very small, surreal and immensely satisfying victory celebration. The team travelled all around the northwest for a couple of years with the Budweiser All Star Tour. They learned a ton; particularly with regard to logistics and chassis set-up. By the end of the five year run with that type of car they were very comfortable and won several races, including all four of the Thrifty Foods series races at Penticton Speedway in 1998 and 1999.


During this period Darren also ran in a couple of road race events at Mission Raceway near Vancouver and Race City in Calgary. This was just to keep up his road racing license and, of course, because it’s fun.


2000 to 2007 The CASCAR years. Darren had become anxious to move up to a professional series and the decision was made between Darren, Roy and Darren’s dad, Garth to move into the very competitive and expensive CASCAR Super Series (now called the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series). The media coverage was much greater than anything else around and included some television.


There were many highs during this high profile time period. Pole positions, fastest laps, best appearing car awards, many podium finishes and out right race wins in CASCAR’s Sportsman division to name a few.


By 2007, the Western Canadian portion of the series was squashed by the sanctioning body, so the car was sold and a step back to the Sportsman division was considered. The economy and business concerns fragmented the team that had been built through the years as many moved to other areas. So even the Sportsman program was put on hold in the end.


Summary: Darren has over 20 years of race experience now. He has over 100 race wins in stock cars, open wheel formula cars and sports cars on pavement and ice, on ovals and road courses.


The Future: For 2012 and beyond Darren will be returning to the race track. The desire to compete is stronger than ever and new venues and challenges will be sought out.


A VW Golf sedan is currently under construction for a return to ice racing, and more production-car based road racing ventures are being considered as well. Stay tuned….