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Fender-bending fun at fair's demolition derby

  • Josh Babb of Caruthers gets slammed up during Saturday's Demolition Derby at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds, August 3, 2013. (Conner Jay/The Press Democrat)

The roar of gunning engines, spray of mud and clash of twisted metal on wheels punctuated a raucous Saturday evening inside Chris Beck Arena at the Sonoma County Fair, where the survivor-takes-all destruction derby thrilled a spirited sellout crowd.

As fenders were ripped off, tires shredded and chassis violently rearranged, spectators in the jammed grandstands howled with approval.

"It's awesome! They're destroying each others' cars," said Stacey Furlong, 16, of Guerneville, who was taking in the vehicular carnage with her father and younger brother.

Demolition Derby

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While Ferris wheels spun in the background and the market beef auction wrapped up, Saturday's signature event kicked off with an announcer's growl.

"Are we ready to rummmbbble?" came the call, echoing across the arena's dirt floor, where five cars prepared to slam into one another.

One lost a wheel within minutes but limped on and made it through the heat, becoming a crowd favorite.

"He's still going!" Furlong cheered.

Adam Miller, 38, had prepared like a veteran. He wore earplugs.

"You can still feel it and hear it," he shouted, barely audible over the cacophony of internal combustion.

Moments later, a full-speed assault by one car sent another up and over the dirt berm, disabling it on the roof of another junker. The crowd whooped as the tow trucks were sent in.


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