Mountain State Motorsports Promotions
West Virginia Motor Speedway
Mineral Wells, WV
—official press release—
West Virginia Motor Speedway facelift underway
The dirt has already started to fly at the West Virginia Motor Speedway near Mineral Wells, WV, but this time it doesn’t involve the high powered race cars that have made ‘the Speedplant’ famous.
Preliminary work has commenced in the project to reconfigure the mammoth track into a smaller but more exciting version of WVMS.
Fencing and guardrails have already been removed in preparation for the major project.
“We’ll be bringing equipment in from several different areas of the state this week” said Mountain State Motorsports Promotion’s Lynn Chapman.
Students from various regions of the state who are enrolled in the Heavy Equipment Operator Training program of Kanawha Valley Community and Technical College will use this project as a training site under the instruction of a skilled earth moving and construction operator.
“When the project is complete, the Mountain State will also have employable operators ready to join the labor force” said Chapman. “It’s a great opportunity for the school’s project-based training program, and beneficial to the state and all involved”.
Earth moving will begin in earnest on Monday, April 4th.
When plans to reconfigure the track were originally released, the intention was build a 4/10 mile using much of the original track. That idea has since be modified.
“We took a long, hard look at that idea, and began to have second thoughts” said MSMP’s Brian Ferrell.
“We were afraid that we simply would be trading one oversized, high horsepower track, for a smaller version. That wouldn’t have accomplished anything. We decided that since were spending the time, effort and expense to reconfigure the track, we wanted the finished product to be a track that produced close and exciting racing, not just high speeds alone.”
Enter civil engineer Bob Bolles.
Bolles, who also serves as the senior technical editor of ‘Circle Track’ magazine, was contacted by Chapman after the pair had communicated about ‘the perfect dirt track’. Bolles, whose engineering background and involvement with dirt track racing “provided some great information and needed direction” said Chapman, will help oversee what will now be the new WVMS.
The result will be a 3/8 mile track that will incorporate only a portion of the original front stretch in its new configuration.
Both turns and the back straightway will sit well inside the original track layout.
“Instead of guardrails, we’ll use run off areas. It saves damage to the cars. The big track was notorious for wrecks that would total cars when they hit the walls. We wanted to eliminate as much of that as possible with the new track” said Chapman.
Ferrell added “We have a tremendous talent pool of racers in the mid-Ohio Valley area, but the original track’s size was so demanding on equipment that many no longer could support the races out here. The new 3/8 mile will be a true oval. It will have 100’ wide turns banked at about 15 degrees, and 70’ wide straightaways. The turn entry & exits are designed to promote passing, and will be a part of what will make the new track different than any other in the area. We’re excited about the ‘new’ track, and really believe that the local racers and fans will be as well.”
The 2011 season is set to kick off May 28th and 29th when the nationally known World of Outlaw Late Models headline the Memorial Day weekend annual 2 day ‘Racefest’ opener. Also on tap for the season opener will be the Buckeye Outlaw Sprint Car Series along with the TSMA modifieds and TSMA Hot Mods, with the Mod-Lite division rounding out the race card.
For further information on the West Viginia Motor Speedway, visit the official track website @ www.wvspeedway.com or phone the track office at 304-489-0090.