RV Park Next Up for Nevada NASCAR Track?
Jon Hodges, president of Racing's Field of Dreams LLC, the newly created race promoter for Reno-Fernley Raceway, is banking on a boost from NASCAR to double or even triple race attendance at the dirt oval track in Lyon County, the Lahontan Valley News reported.
And if that happens, Hodges says, the land around the track could eventually see upgrades such as a 200- to 300-space RV park with full hookups and retail storefront space.
Crews are busy preparing Reno-Fernley Raceway for the upcoming short-track racing season, which kicks off in late April. Fourteen races at the track recently were sanctioned by NASCAR, racing's governing body, which is expected to draw drivers from Utah, Idaho and California seeking to earn NASCAR points for racing in different categories.
Attendance at the track typically has averaged between 900 and 1,100 patrons on race nights, Hodges says, but he expects the sanctioned races to boost attendance to 3,000 to 5,000 patrons. Racing's Field of Dreams has leased the facility through 2015 and will promote and operate Reno-Fernley Raceway for the next five racing seasons, with an option for continued years.
Hodges says when NASCAR officials visited the track last year they felt it was being under-utilized.
“NASCAR said this track has incredible potential for this community and for Nevada,” Hodges says. “Our community now has the potential to become a visitor's center and a vacation place for people to come spend their weekends. It is a great economic boon for this community.”
Since inking a deal with NASCAR, Hodges says, corporate sponsorships have been coming in left and right, including Whelen Engineering, U.S. Gypsum, Sprint, Coca-Cola, Dominoes, Home Depot and Comfort Suites. Casino sponsorships include Harrah's, Silver Legacy and John Ascuaga's Nugget, he says.
Expansion plans for the current season include adding video scoreboards and an off-road course that links into the dirt oval in order to host several major motorsports shows, Hodges says. Once Racing's Field of Dreams gets through its inaugural season, it plans to move to Phase 2 of its expansion, which calls for construction of an RV park to accommodate several hundred overnight visitors and building up to eight storefronts in a small strip center at the site that would house satellite stores from Fernley and Reno.
“We have the land and we have the area to do it, it is just matter of getting crews to do the work, Hodges says. “We would like to have it for this year but there just wasn't enough time.”
Reno-Fernley Raceway has five different classes of racing: Premier, pro-stocks, hobby stocks, dwarfs and pure stock minis.