Nashua, NH. — Longtime Nashua businessman Norman Wrenn Jr. has purchased Lee USA Speedway in Lee, NH. Wrenn bought the 3/8-mile speedway from John “Red” MacDonald and wife Judy, track owners for the last 33 years. Wrenn made the disclosure Tuesday, February 27.
Wrenn, in his 40th year in the propane gas business, is also a successful stock car racer, dating back to 1983. A many time feature winner and track champion, Wrenn has competed in Pro Stock, Pro-4 modified, and Modified Racing Series competition over a 35-year career. Wrenn ironically won his first Pro Stock race at Lee in 1993.
“No changes, no staff changes, no race division changes, the recently announced schedule for the 2018 season is in place and we are prepared to go with it,” said Norman Wrenn III when speaking about the take over.
Wrenn’s Jr’s son, Norman Wrenn III, also a racer, will focus on the day-to-day operation of the business in a full time capacity with track General Manager Joe Bassett who has been retained by the new ownership.
Wrenn indicated he intends to continue the track’s NASCAR sanction and the weekly Whelen All-American Series.
As is the case when ownership changes occur, with it will be upgrades where the Wrenn’s feel there is a need.
Said Wrenn III, “Looking at upgrades in the VIP Tower, track lighting, and the public address system. Lee always has been a well-maintained racetrack. A clean facility. We will strive to continue that.”
Wrenn also stated that he plans to focus on the so-called ‘front gate’.
“Putting fans back in the grandstands is important to our future. We have a strong need to be sure families are entertained and race programs are over at a respectable hour.”
Wrenn Jr is the fourth owner of the speedway originally built by Robert Bonser in 1964. Hall of Famer’s Charlie Elliott, Ken Smith, and Russ Conway took the reigns in 1983 and scheduled their first race in July 1984. The MacDonald’s purchased the track in December 1986 and opened the following year. The track fast became popular with fans and competitors alike.
Red MacDonald is a New England Hall of Fame member having been inducted for his success as a track owner and promoter.
The 77-year old car owner and builder is quick to point out the Lee track is like a family member. But after he and wife Judy, having worked 44- years and often 7-days a week, felt it was time.
“Judy and I have loved running the race track for the past 33-years. We have been really fortunate to have some of the best people in the business work year after year for the love of the sport and the speedway,” said MacDonald.
“We are sad in some ways to let go and happy at the same time that the Wrenn’s assure us that they will take it to the next level and that is exciting to us. That makes the transition a lot easier for us knowing that they will continue to run it as a racetrack and that’s all we ever wanted when it was time. Joe Bassett will continue as General Manager and our staff will stay intact. That means a lot to us.”
The 2018 season at Lee USA Speedway begins in April with the American-Canadian Tour ‘Governors Cup 150’ on April 15, with the Late Model Sportsman, and Northeast Classic Lites, also on the opening card.
-Lee USA Speedway Press Release
-Photo credit: Speed51.com / Rick Ibsen