Too often we hear news of short track racing facilities closing, being torn down and turned into something other than a facility that hosts motorsports events. Too often we hear about more race tracks being added to the list of Lost Speedways. But every so often a new facility is built, or at least proposed.
Recently, we’ve seen new tracks pop up in Virginia (Dominion Raceway) and we’ve seen proposals for new race tracks in places like Upstate New York (Central New York Raceway Park) as well. Now it appears that the next race track to be built will be in the Land of Enchantment of New Mexico.
New Mexico’s State Land Commissioner is in the process of reviewing a proposal that would see a new motorsports park built on 127 acres of land near Vado, New Mexico, halfway in between Las Cruces, New Mexico and El Paso, Texas according to a report in the Las Cruces Sun News. The facility will be home to a 3/8-mile clay oval as well as a motorcross course and tracks for go-karting and BMX racing.
Las Cruces businessman Royal Jones, who also owns Southern New Mexico Speedway, told the Las Cruces Sun News that he is hoping the new motorsports park in Vado will be operational at the start of the 2018 racing season.
“We’re in the preliminary stages of design, so we don’t exactly know how much the motor sports complex could cost,” Jones told the Las Cruces Sun News. “We’re hoping we could break ground on it sometime in the next year.”
One of Jones’ partners, Rue Stone, told the Las Cruces Sun News that the management group (of which Stone is a part of) is already in talks with the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series for 2018 and “The Lucas Oil Short Course is also considering it.”
According to the report, the proposal under review by the State Land Commissioner has plans for grandstands, an area for roping events, an amphitheater, vehicle pits at the dirt track and a concession stand.
The State Land Commissioner, Aubrey Dunn, told the Las Cruces Sun News that the motorsports park will boost the local economy as well as serve as good use of state land.
“Trespass and illegal dumping are common on state trust lands and especially troublesome in the area of the proposed motor sports complex.” Dunn said in the Las Cruces Sun News. “Not only will this project boost the local economy and support public schools, but the lessee will also help mitigate these ongoing problems.”
During a day and age where we’re often forced to read about the closure of race tracks, the prospect of a new facility certainly shines a ray of light on the future of short track racing.
-By Rob Blount, Speed51.com Southeast Editor – Twitter: @RobBlount
-Photo Credit: Southern New Mexico Speedway Facebook Page