|North Wilkesboro Speedway: New life on horizon?|
|Friday, 28 September 2007 16:12|
After lying dormant for over a decade, new life may be on the horizon for the historic North Wilkesboro Speedway.Entrepreneur Land Investor/Developer Worth Mitchell of Guilford County has plans to buy the facility.
"My intent with the track is to purchase the track, to revamp the track, and to get racing back at the speedway, and to use it for multi-purpose concerts and events," he said.
Purchasing and restoring the track, however, is no small challenge. The facility is in need of a facelift, but Mitchell said he is prepared for the project.
"I have allotted and prepared for $2 million to be put into the revamping of the facility, and me and my staff feel that is the perfect number to get it to pristine condition," he said.
Mitchell sees North Wilkesboro Speedway as a long-term investment.
"This [will not be] a fast turn and burn. This is a situation where you have to stay the course- a huge mountain to climb, but I am prepared to stay the course as long as it takes to get the track back where it needs to be," he said.
Community support is vital in such an immense undertaking.
"This cannot and will not ever take place unless the community gets riled up and excited about it, and realizes what a huge thing can happen," he said.
Support isn’t hard to find, however, in a community that found itself fiscally emaciated as a result of the track’s closure 11 years ago, and support wasn’t hard to find in a man whose name is nearly synonymous with the track; NASCAR legend Junior Johnson.
"He's for real. I think he'll wind up with it. I've talked to him a lot about it, and I think he's serious. He's financially able to do it," Johnson said.
Don't expect NASCAR to come running back to the facility, however.
"It won't ever be like it was when they had the two big NASCAR races there, but there's a lot of stuff that could go on there that would entertain the people and be good for teh county. A lot of the fans that used to go there would come back to it," Johnson said.
Mitchell encouraged the community to share its feelings about the track.
"Tell me how you feel. Tell me your opinions. Tell me your vision. Just bounce some things off of me. I'd love to hear from anybody what your views are and what you would like to see happen to the track," Mitchell urged.
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