NASCAR & Auto Racing

Gary Gerould will have his first ‘recess’ in decades

Gary Gerould the radio voice of the Sacramento Kings talks with Sacramento Kings small forward John Salmons (5) after his team's 121-110 victory against the New Orleans Hornets at Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento on Wednesday, April 10, 2013.
Gary Gerould the radio voice of the Sacramento Kings talks with Sacramento Kings small forward John Salmons (5) after his team's 121-110 victory against the New Orleans Hornets at Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento on Wednesday, April 10, 2013. hamezcua@sacbee.com

When Gary Gerould arrived home early Thursday after calling the final Kings game of the season Wednesday night in Houston, his wife, Marlene, greeted him and said, “Welcome to recess.”

That “recess” will be quite an adjustment for Gerould, who retired from working on ESPN’s NHRA broadcasts last year.

Gerould, 75, has been so busy for so long doing radio for the Kings and motor sports for TV he said he never developed a hobby such as gardening or woodworking like many of his professional peers. Gerould hasn’t had an offseason for decades.

“I’ve never been much of a hobby person,” Gerould said. “I play golf maybe one time a year. I do enjoy reading. We’ll see how it evolves. What I do know is that I need a little structure.”

He’s been used to having structure because of his work schedule and travel commitments. He’s spent more time in airports than many TSA agents, and he probably has enough airline miles to buy a small country.

“I started thinking about this adjustment on the plane ride back from Houston, that will probably be my last flight for a while,” Gerould said. “I’ll figure something out. It will be different, no doubt.”

The only trips he has planned until the Kings’ 2016-2017 season starts is this weekend to his timeshare in Lake Tahoe and to Indianapolis with his son, Bobby, for the 100th running of the Indy 500 in late May.

He will spend more time with his daughter, Beth, 53, who suffers from a debilitating kidney disease and lives with her parents. Marlene is Beth’s primary caregiver, Gerould said, so the trip to Tahoe will give both of them a chance to explore what’s next.

But the TV will be on and he’ll be watching NHRA races and the NBA playoffs.

“I’m still a rabid fan,” he said.

I started thinking about this adjustment on the plane ride back from Houston, that will probably be my last flight for a while. I’ll figure something out. It will be different, no doubt.

Gary Gerould

All American hosts Late Models

The Pacific Challenge Series, the region’s only local Late Models asphalt stock car racing series, comes to Roseville’s All American Speedway on Saturday.

A 75-lap feature on the one-third-mile oval at the Placer County Fairgrounds is the second race of the season. Manteca’s Jacob Gomes won the opener at Madera Speedway in March.

Saturday’s race is the first of three points races and four events total for the Pacific Challenge Series at All American Speedway. The race includes defending series champion John Moore of Granite Bay and his son, Cole Moore, the 2015 PCS Rookie of the Year. Four-time Late Model champion Eric Schmidt of Roseville also is in the field.

For more information, go to pacificchallengeseries.com.

Et cetera

▪ For the second time, NASCAR driver and Elk Grove native Kyle Larson was unable to race against the World of Outlaws last weekend in front of his hometown fans. The Wine Country Outlaw Showdown at Calistoga Speedway was canceled because of rain. Larson missed a March 23 Outlaws race in Placerville after crashing the previous weekend at Fontana.

▪ Nevada City’s Alexander Rossi will return to California for IndyCar’s Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on April 17. Rossi is a leading rookie driver for the Andretti Herta Autosport with Curb-Agajanian team and is 14th in points after two starts this season. He also will compete in the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma on Sept. 18.

Mark Billingsley covers local motor sports for The Bee. Reach him at editorwriter@att.net

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