DRAPER, VA :: During the past months I have found myself looking deeper and deeper into Dominion Raceway’s plan to move to a different location. While doing research I came across a website named “Stop the Raceway”. I was immediately taking back by this as I hadn’t seen anything about it before that point. While reading the site I found that the Coalition to Preserve the Thornburg Countryside started the site in an effort to prevent the building of Dominion Raceway in their neighborhood.

The coalition stated certain concerns they have about the building of the track and it effects to surrounding homes, businesses, and public schools. While I may not agree with some of their concerns, they are entitled to their opinions and have certainly gained speed in trying to become noticed by county officials. While they are gaining more notice by county officials, they also seem to be gaining notice of nearby race fans. These fans want the track to be moved to the Thornburg, VA area and will support it as much as possible.

While the fans may want the track to succeed and be successful, the Coalition to Preserve the Thornburg Countryside doesn’t want the track built anywhere near them. This has put many fans on the defensive as an opposition such as this seems, in a way, unbelievable. Many fans never thought about the possibility of a group of people standing up and not wanting a track near them. This is because we forget that there are people who don’t like racing. We sometimes have views that if we like it and a lot of other people do as well, then everyone does! But that just isn’t the case and this coalition has proven that fact.

Now while I may not be in agreement with mostly anything they have to say, I have no problem with the right to free speech until recently. Within the past few weeks, the coalition and its supporters have become increasingly aggressive and sometimes hostile towards supporters of the track through their Facebook page “Stop the Raceway”. While I am not a fan of social media, it is here to stay and what is said on it cannot be overlooked. In recent updates, they have shown videos of half-naked women dancing, the crash at Daytona in the Nationwide race, and have also said that raceways only bring lower wage service jobs to the area.

At first I laughed when seeing such posts like the ones with the women dancing in front of an audience. However, I soon realized they truly believe what happens at one track takes place at all of them which just isn’t true. The staff at Dominion Raceway has conducted themselves with the upmost class. With that said, I seriously doubt you would ever see such things as what is portrayed in the videos of women dancing in bikinis on a stage.

In another post, they brought up the wreck that took place at Daytona International Speedway in the Nationwide race when numerous fans were injured. This, too, is something that is rarely seen at short tracks across America as the cars never reach speeds of 200mph like they do at Daytona. This limits a cars chance from going through a catch fence surrounding the track and injuring spectators. Furthermore, this track has plans to be a state of the art facility and I’d bet money safety will not be shortchanged at this raceway.

The “Stop the Raceway” admin has also said numerous times that they need white collar jobs in Thornburg, not the type of lower wage jobs that come with a track. This is what truly pissed me off as it was a slap in the face to those who work the lower wage jobs. Lower wage jobs still equal money being transferred which still equals BUSINESS and business of any kind stimulates the economy in an area. So, even if lower wage jobs move into your area after the racetrack, it’s more business than the area has now.

Lastly, within the past weekm they have begun to target fans for giving their opinions on their page… even going as far as setting ridiculous rules for posting and insulting numerous race fans intelligence for not seeing eye to eye on the issues the way they do. In my opinion, this is working in Dominion Raceway’s favor to get everything approved as they are gaining more and more support by fans that are seeing their friends insulted by the coalition’s Facebook page. However, the fans must not allow for their emotions to overtake them and must remain calm and polite if they choose to engage this coalition.

I know that I may live in Southwest Virginia and may not live close to Thornburg, but I am a driver and race fan. A fan who wants to see racetracks everywhere succeed in these tough economic times. These are only my opinions and just like The Coalition to Preserve the Thornburg Countryside, I am entitled to my own opinion. Good luck Dominion Raceway! You have an overwhelming amount of supporters standing behind you.