Airway Heights, Wash. – Citing poor car count and big expenses, Spokane County Raceway general manager Craig Smith announced this week that a number of special events, including the remaining two races of the Inland Northwest Superstock Association have been cancelled on the half-mile oval.
"We're not closing the oval, we're just eliminating the events that aren't working for us," Smith emphasized. SCR will hold a demo derby Aug. 10 and NASCAR's K & N Pro Series will race Aug. 24, plus other local events.
Smith wanted to point out that INSSA is not the only group that is struggling this season with car counts.
The Northwest Supermodified Racing Association winged sprints were contracted earlier this season for 12-18 cars, Smith said. "He called me up on Wednesday before the Saturday event; uh, we've only got three cars." Smith said.
"We contracted with INSSA for 16 to 24 cars, we have not seen that yet this year, this past Saturdays event had a very disappointing count of only 7 cars," Smith said. "It's been three huge losses with the INSSA cars, these car counts are not only disappointing to the track, but are also very disappointing for our fans that have come out expecting to see a good show"
Smith said they've lost a total of $50,000 so far this season with the oval track, and invested another $50,000 in transponders and equipment that allow ease in scoring and operating the race classes.
"I just told them last week we just can't keep footing the bill for all his stuff," Smith said. "We're going to sink this whole ship."
Local race classes on the oval have also had limited fields, Smith said, adding that the remainder of the county-owned SCR facility is doing well.
"The drag strip is doing excellent, the car count is up, it's looking good. The road course car count is up. All the events, with the exception of the oval, have been profitable."
SCR is in the midst of a series of events on the 2.25-mile road course with the track hosting the Spokane Grand Prix with impressive fields of open-wheel and sports cars racing Friday through Sunday.