It's been a while since I've unloaded here in such a way but it's time to address the bullshit here and now. One of the reasons I've kept quiet is that I'm an employee of Lakeville Speedway and I don't want any confusion over my opinions and the official opinions of Lakeville or the owners. So, as Obama would say, "let me be clear", what you read here has nothing to do with my connection to Lakeville or any other track for that matter. This is directly from me so if you have a problem with any of it, contact me in person and take up your concerns with me directly. I'm easy to find every Friday night.
Now for the bullshit. For several weeks there have been plenty of whispers about the death of Lakeville Speedway. In some cases it was much more than whispers. It was outright public lies being spread among racers and fans alike. I've addressed some of these comments directly when I could, and as always I've encouraged those spreading rumors to contact Randy personally to get the facts. It seems that some prefer not to get the facts because it gives them more pleasure to spread their own version of things. After all, the facts aren't as dramatic or exciting as stories of doom and gloom. This weekend I made the trip to another track and before even reaching the pits I overheard people talking about the death of Lakeville and how they'd miss the place. Needless to say I was shocked to hear that I missed the funeral for one of my favorite race tracks. Once in the pits I caught more conversations about the end of Lakeville and how Randy has just given up and walked away since WCS was putting them out of business. I won't even address the rumors that Jason Flory fully intended to do just that by running Fridays. That's a whole different subject and since I didn't hear those words come from Jason directly, I have to consider it just another dramatic line of shit at this point. Sure, it's no secret that Jason probably doesn't send Randy a Christmas card but I would honestly hope that he'd have enough sense not to start a business by trying to kill a competing track. That wouldn't just be rude, it could very well turn out to be a very bad business decision. On that note, I couldn't help but speak up last night when I heard a racer say that Randy would love to see WCS fail to protect his own track. That statement I know for a fact to be bullshit and any racer that has talked to Randy has heard exactly the opposite statement at least once. Randy would love to see all the area tracks prosper and I've heard the same sentiment from Jesse Wardell of Hilltop. So, let's put this crap to rest and promote the idea of all these tracks working together. If you've been around this sport very long at all you know how racers and fans tend to bash one track while ignoring the same problems they bitch about at another track. That's not healthy for any of the tracks involved. The one getting bashed takes a beating publicly, and the other track has no incentive to fix their problems. Maybe a better approach would be to calmly take your concerns to the track owners or promoters and provide positive suggestions. Keeping in mind that these tracks are businesses would help too. I don't know of any tracks that consistently make big profits, and in many cases they can expect to lose some money on any given night. Racers and fans may not realize what it costs just to open the gates on race night. Those costs begin the morning after race day and continue all week long. Now ask yourself how you would handle things if you spent your own money and time busting ass all week to open the doors of your business and and then were faced with bashing and outright lies from people that aren't even your customers in some cases. I know how I'd like to handle those things but luckily track owners are more forgiving. Probably because they love the sport even more than those doing the damage pretend to love it.
So just how do these rumors and lies get started exactly? Well, it started with a few nights of lower than average car counts at Lakeville. Did Lakeville suffer from those nights? Hell yes they did, but not one driver or staff member shared in that pain when it came time to get paid. Randy has always stepped up and fulfilled his commitments to the racers and staff, and that's much more than could be said of past owners at Lakeville and other tracks. So am I writing this to kiss Randy's ass? Hell no, and he's very aware of my thoughts on how I would have protected myself if I was in his shoes. If it was my business, the payout would always be based on car counts. Other tracks even in this area have done this for years and it's worked out just fine. Even when Sprints were recently brought back to Lakeville the payout was based on car counts until enough cars showed up weekly. To me, that's just smart business and wouldn't be a bad idea at all tracks to secure the future of our favorite weekend pastime. Then again, I don't own a race track and after years of seeing the whole story of owning one, I wouldn't take one if you gave it to me. My hat goes off to anybody that steps up and successfully runs any race track especially in this economy and this era of the "keyboard cowboys". Keyboard cowboys are those that love to use forums to bash a track while hiding behind a keyboard and screen name. Some of these idiots don't even go out to the tracks, yet feel proud to run their mouth about something they've heard, not witnessed. Let's not forget about the online poster that posted that Lakeville was rained out one night because he heard from a friend that it was raining there. That's just one example and it hits all tracks at one time or another. In my opinion, if you're not doing something to promote and support the sport of racing and it's community, you have no right to call yourself a racer or race fan. Just showing up at a track and is showing support. Calm positive suggestions are showing support. Getting others interested in racing is showing support. Running your mouth in a negative way, especially when spewing pure lies and having no interest in getting the facts, is not showing support and certainly not needed. Those people would be much better off finding another sport to shit on. Leave racing to those of us that truly love it!
So, is Lakeville really dead? Ask yourself if Randy would spend all that money and time all week if he really didn't plan on running a show on Friday. Would he reach deep into his own pockets to make full payouts even on bad nights if Lakeville was dead? Would he work on putting together a Modified special in the coming weeks if Lakeville was dead? Would he pull his hair out trying to improve the racing surface each week if Lakeville was dead? Would he bend over backwards every week to keep racers and fans happy if Lakeville was dead? I think the answer to all these questions is HELL NO! He's doing all of these things because he wants Lakeville to survive and so do I. Now ask yourself if you share that same desire to see one this areas most historic tracks survive and continue to provide racers and fans with a true bullring type track that has become known as a real "drivers track". If your answer is yes then all I can say is get off your asses and show your support in person. Bring your friends and family and show your support. For you "keyboard cowboys", step away from the computer and finally take in a night of racing action for yourself. Randy and the gang will surely show their appreciation. This attitude pertains to any track of your choice of course. Support them, and they'll be happy to provide you with your racing fix the best way they can. The more support they're given the more chances they'll have to provide special events and such for your enjoyment. The bottom line is you can make a positive difference in dirt track racing in this area, or you can do your best to damage it. The choice is yours. Just remember those of us that love the sport will do our best to weed out those that insist on doing damage. It's time to stop the bullshit!