In southwest Virginia racing lost two tracks during the most recent off-season. Motor Mile Speedway in Fairlawn and Lonesome Pine Raceway in Coeburn both ended their NASCAR Whelen All-American Series programs with Motor Mile staying open for special non-racing related events and Lonesome Pine shutting down altogether.
In recent weeks the rumor mill had begun to swirl that both tracks would reopen albeit under completely different circumstances. One covered in dirt and the other with a meeting set up to discuss changes going forward.
Lonesome Pine Raceway will reportedly reopen for the 2019 season but not as an asphalt track but rather covered in dirt. The track has struggled in recent years to keep car counts up and the track hasn’t had a lot of maintenance done to keep up with the aging facility. Dirt tracks in the region have been staying steady and even growing and with Lonesome Pine’s proximity to many dirt tracks, the future looks bright for the track though it is a huge loss to asphalt racing.
Motor Mile also had a steep decline in car counts over the last decade with fewer drivers now traveling and even less local racers there to fill their void. However, in this case, the facility is first class and would not need much to reopen to racing.
Motor Mile Speedway posted to their Facebook page that a meeting would take place on August 19th. Here’s the full post from their Facebook page:
“ATTENTION: Motor Mile Speedway ownership is hosting a forum at 3PM Sunday, August 19th at the Motor Mile Speedway VIP Suites for the purpose of exploring suggestions related to the possibility of a future racing program at Motor Mile Speedway.
Those invited include team owners, drivers, and individuals with an investment in the sport who are committed to supporting Motor Mile Speedway if racing were to return. This forum is not open to the media.”
Despite a challenging last few years and a season this year void of much asphalt stock car racing options in the region, 2019 could be a different story altogether for this region.
RACE22.com will follow up after the meeting at Motor Mile to give you any info available to the media. We will also publish the announcement of Lonesome Pine’s reopening when it is formally available.