Friday, March 2, 2012

Race is Run – California Racetrack Company Files Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Irwindale Speedway LLC, the management group that runs the Irwindale Speedway auto racing track, has recently filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy; the 2012 racing season has also been canceled.
Bankruptcy filings at the United States Bankruptcy Court, Central District of California, show the racetrack owners owe creditors $331,773.11. The largest amount is $150,000 owed on a personal-injury claim, writes Tim Haddock on www.espn.go.comNu-Way Industries Inc., the company that owns the property where the track and offices are built, is also owed $55,000 in back-rent. Monies are also owed to the Irwindale Police Department, the Golden State Water Company and the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.

According to documents obtained from the Los Angeles County Treasurer and Tax Collector, there are four buildings on the Irwindale Speedway property that are owned by Nu-Way Industries, valued at an estimated $31 million.
Mike Atkinson, the chief steward at Irwindale Speedway, said news of the bankruptcy was a surprise.  In the article Atkinson stated, “I didn’t know there was a bankruptcy until yesterday. I wasn’t informed of anything. Things are up in the air, but I’m trying to stay positive.”
The promoters of one of the races held each year at the track since 1999, the United State Auto Club Turkey Night Grand Prix, are reportedly looking for a new venue. “It’s unlikely you’re going to see any racing at Irwindale,” USAC Western director of operations Tommy Hunt said.
The Formula Drift Series had a date scheduled at Irwindale Speedway this fall. According to John Pangilinan, the media director with the series, Irwindale Speedway has not contacted them about honoring the race date.
Irwindale Speedway has been adversely affected by “poor attendance, small car counts and dwindling sponsorship”. Toyota, who bought the naming rights to the track in 2008, did not renew their title sponsorship at the conclusion of last year’s racing season.
The NASCAR All-Star Showdown, a nationally televised event pitting the top drivers and teams from the K&N Pro Series East and West, was canceled last August. The racetrack was not on the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West schedule when it was released in December. Irwindale Speedway hosted at least one West Series race since the track opened in 1999.
Recently, grandstands seats in the pit area were removed and offices were cleared out.
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