News

New NW Race Track

Discussion in 'Northwest' started by sammyb, Jan 17, 2010.

  1. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    #1 sammyb, Jan 17, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2010
    The plan is to build a new facility outside of Shelton. It will be much like Thunderhill (in fact, a Thunderhill director helped on the track design and spoke at the local public hearing) --meaning it will have tons of runoff room perfect for track days and instruction. Main force behind it is a great person, club racer, and fellow F-car guy.

    It's not designed to replace Pacific Raceways (which has the stands for big spectator events), but another option designed by car people for exploring the limits of their cars and motorcycles in track day, driving school and competition formats. It will also give kids an opportunity to test their vehicles (road course and drag strip) in a safe enviornment.

    Support site just went live at http://www.raceinmason.com

    There's a section to add your support as comments: http://raceinmason.wordpress.com/about/
    Also the site asks people to send an email to the Mason County Commissioners (listed on the what you can do to help page at http://www.raceinmason.com/help.html) to let them know if you're the type of person who races and how much annually you might spend in their county. One of the Commissioners and some of the people at the County planning office are trying to throw up roadblocks, so the more support, the easier it will be for the people doing this to complete it.

    If you know any clubs that race, this would be the time to get them to lend their support.
     
  2. To remove this ad click here.

  3. Jdubbya

    Jdubbya Two Time F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Dec 28, 2003
    25,039
    PNW
    Full Name:
    John
    Outside of Shelton?? Right in my backyard would be excellent!! I sent a note to the paper. I hope the politicians don't end up screwing this one up. While I'm not a fan of Nascar it was sad to see that previous deal fall through that would have been even closer to me. That would have been such a huge boost to the local economy, and it seems like this would be too.

    I hope this happens, it'd be fun to see.
     
  4. PlaysWithItalians

    PlaysWithItalians Formula Junior

    Sep 30, 2007
    357
    PacNW
    Full Name:
    Mark
    When you say "car clubs", will that include SCCA and ICSCC racing as well?
    If so, I see more weekend trips for BSI Racing once the track opens!
     
  5. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    The model of the club track is to essentially be there for any racing body, club, driver's training program, etc... to rent. SCCA, ICSCC, IRDC, WWSCC, SOVREN, BSCC, WMRRA, NESBA, and all other clubs for cars and motorcycles would all benefit from the track.

    Personal opinion, this track is a heck of a lot better for the community than NASCAR. The NASCAR model does very little to contribute to the long-term economic and social well-being of a host city these days. It costs so much in tax breaks, public money, infrastructure...not to mention the private costs necessary to create a stadium track that meets the needs of NASCAR that it is near impossible to break even before the track needs to be updated. Furthermore, while a club track gets to be used by people like us, a stadium track requires high-profile events for use. (NASCAR tracks don't get used a lot, which means that all that money goes for something that can only be utilized five to ten times per year. With high-attendance events, the cost to the community in security and clean up is tremendous...not to mention the area has to be overbuilt for 100,000 people, which goes unused the rest of the year.) Club tracks have fewer spectators, but a steadier and lower-impact(cost) income stream.

    This actually has the potential to be a true destination track facility. I've seen the track diagram and it is very cool.

    Again, we just need to make sure that the Commissioners in Mason County know a) how much money this brings, b) how much support there is and c)that "racers" aren't hooligans (actually the opposite -- lawyers, bankers, CEOs, techies) so that they get behind it enough to make the civil servants (who find ways of making change hard to accomplish) actually help make this happen.
     
  6. donv

    donv Two Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Jan 5, 2002
    20,244
    Portland, Oregon
    Full Name:
    Don
  7. To remove this ad click here.

  8. horizon

    horizon Rookie

    Dec 13, 2008
    8
    This is Great news. I vintage race at Thunderhill 1 or 2 times a year and if these guys in shelton use the business model of thunderhill, then only good things will come for everyone.
    If you look at the New hotels getting built in the town of Willows something must going okay.

    I wish them well.

    Tony
     
  9. Cavallino Aficionado

    Oct 3, 2006
    1,992
    Lk. Tapps/Buckley WA
    Full Name:
    Brian
    Hopefully they have a great team working with them to tackle the Mason County issues. I happen to work for just that type of firm.

    Brian
     
  10. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    Brian -- are you a Land Use attorney?
     
  11. SWIFTVISION

    SWIFTVISION Karting

    Jul 22, 2007
    98
    Portland, OR
    I'm working in Shelton designing the new electrical utility headquarters there actually.
     
  12. To remove this ad click here.

  13. Cavallino Aficionado

    Oct 3, 2006
    1,992
    Lk. Tapps/Buckley WA
    Full Name:
    Brian
    #10 Cavallino Aficionado, Jan 20, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2010
    Hey Sammy,

    Nope, I work for a multi-discipline engineering firm in Tacoma.

    We provide land use planning, civil engineering, structural eng, survey, landscape arch, wetland spec and building design.

    Take a peek: http://www.ahbl.com/

    Shoot me a PM if you want to chat...
     
  14. Air_Cooled_Nut

    Air_Cooled_Nut Formula Junior

    Nov 25, 2004
    952
    Portland, Oregon
    Full Name:
    Toby Erkson
    Not convenient either way as they are 2.5 hours from Beaverton, OR.
     
  15. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    In terms of time/location, the proposed site is about 2 hours from PIR driving the speed limit. It is about an hour from Pacific Raceways.
     
  16. donv

    donv Two Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Jan 5, 2002
    20,244
    Portland, Oregon
    Full Name:
    Don
    I figured this one would be more convenient for the Seattle guys than Oregon Raceway?

     
  17. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    #14 sammyb, Jan 21, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2010
    Oh most definitely. There are also three ways to get there -- the first is via Narrows Bridge and Rte 3, the second is Hwy 101 through Olympia and up to Shelton (which is probably the fastest), then there's the ferry from Seattle to Bremerton and over to Shelton (the scenic route with the least amount of driving).

    It's actually pretty close for Canadians too, since they can take ferries down, too and come down the Olympic Peninsula.

    But we all have to work to encourage Mason County to make it happen! We should be reaching out to the BMW, Porsche, Mazda (Miata and RX7) racing communities too.

    And I forgot to mention -- I don't have any financial ties to this project, other than a friend is trying to make it happen...and I think it is exactly what the area needs. My father was a track announcer for races at Shelton Airport in the late 1950s, so I'm excited at the possibilty of Ferraris and Porsches and Corvettes returning.
     
  18. Bleu Omdurman

    Bleu Omdurman Karting

    Dec 3, 2006
    151
    to be determined
    Full Name:
    Trevor
    I'm a huge supporter (in spirit only) and I hope they get another track in the area. PR needs more competition in the market place and I've no doubt the market will support it. Once the pavement is down, I think we'll have something to celebrate! Oh, and I am definately willing to celebrate!!
     
  19. Cavallino Aficionado

    Oct 3, 2006
    1,992
    Lk. Tapps/Buckley WA
    Full Name:
    Brian
    The County is having heartache over this even though the WSP academy has a training track across the street from this proposed facility. Helps the argument of existing adjacent conditions. I often see where municipalities scratch thier heads because something doesn't fit black and white into thier code. You introduce gray and you have to hold thier hands. I'm in the business of holding hands you could say?
     
  20. h2oskier

    h2oskier F1 Veteran

    Oct 1, 2006
    5,083
    inside someone hot
    Full Name:
    MJA
    Wow it would be great to be so close and have good pavement to run on. ORP is a solid 3 1/2 -4 hours from here. Pacific Raceways is a joke for runoff and pavement. Portland is the only good pavement within 2 hrs of Seattle. If the true designer of Thunderhill is onboard it will be cool. Thunderhill is still one of my favorites. I will support however I can but I sure don't see how much financially a small track like this will help out Shelton. The revenues aren't huge and typically these places are built on crap land with no Taxable value for Shelton to begin with. 6 of us are packing up in June and heading for a private day at ORP and it sure would be nice to have a 45 minute drive from my house rather than almost 4hrs with major trucking / car hauling issues.

    I'm excited as well. would be so cool.
     
  21. ST&A

    ST&A Formula Junior

    Apr 4, 2007
    559
    Lake Stevens
    Full Name:
    Sid Thayer
    Hey Mark if possible can you let me know the dates i would love go and watch you guys run your cars. Maybe pickup some pointers on how to get the most out of my vette.
     
  22. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    #19 sammyb, Jan 22, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2010
    Analyst reports show that Thunderhill adds roughly $16-18 million annually to the local Willows, CA-area economy -- this means that revenues for other existing and new local businesses are higher by that much each year specifically because Thunderhill is open and in business. Basically, every time they hold a race there, people sleep in area hotels, eat in area restaurants, buy gas at local stations, and source fix-it stuff from the auto and improvement shops. Also, businesses are created to support activities there -- from driver's training businesses and event promotion companies to storage warehouses and even catering companies.

    The very conservative economic estimate for placing the track outside of Shelton shows a $14M annual increase for Mason County business revenues. Because The Ridge would have a drag strip and Thunderhill doesn't, this extends the use as a destination facility to a larger market...so projections really are much higher, but the team doesn't want to oversell (they want to under-sell and over-deliver.) Keep in mind that this number does not include the specific revenue directly from the track itself or the value of the revenues which are taxed.

    The land there is indeed very low in value, but contrary to popular belief, assessments increase substantially in the areas with a good track. From Thunderhill to Laguna Seca, land within walking distance of a track becomes desirable. Check out Zillow to see the land around these and Pacific Raceways over the years.

    So when you take the economic impact of adding a track facility in terms of increased revenues to local businesses, increased land values and overall increased tax base from these and the track operations, the total benefit in dollar amount and percentage increase for a small county like Mason is pretty amazing. Actually, it's downright staggering!
     
  23. h2oskier

    h2oskier F1 Veteran

    Oct 1, 2006
    5,083
    inside someone hot
    Full Name:
    MJA
    I understand a Thunderhill with lots of use would have a nice impact on any area. 14 million seems staggering to me for shelton. Believe me I don't want to fight your theory. I want another slab of pavement around here as well. ORP while not stupid over priced for a private day could use some competition to lower it even more :) Your figure of 14 million is $38k a day. that is huge for the economy I'd agree but almost too big. I thought all the Pacific Raceway neighbors never stop complaining because of the Loss in value they incurred. Out near the airport and WSP training Center they really only have 1 neighbor, a prison. Those guys don't pay taxes so I don't really care about that. I hope one day my wife and kids will race in Shelton. that's a shorter drive for me almost than Pacific Raceways.

    Sid I don't know if we are going to tell people when we hit the track. the 6 of us want to keep it fairly private. I will let you know if we decide to. although i'm sure we will get a few snapshots with one of our local photojocks driving with us. I'm just looking forward to some track time again I haven't been on a track since laguna seca in Oct of 07. Plus I have a few new toys to try out. I'd sure rather it was in Shelton. I could come home at lunch and switch out cars.
     
  24. ST&A

    ST&A Formula Junior

    Apr 4, 2007
    559
    Lake Stevens
    Full Name:
    Sid Thayer
    I fully Understand that is cool. Thought i would ask.
     
  25. Cavallino Aficionado

    Oct 3, 2006
    1,992
    Lk. Tapps/Buckley WA
    Full Name:
    Brian
    Hey Sam, any update on progress with the County?
     
  26. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    #23 sammyb, Feb 12, 2010
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2010
    Mason County is doing what counties do best -- ask for more time, more study -- all of which, of course, costs more money in fees. If I understand correctly, the County Planning Office has pushed back up to 6 more months so it can study the noise ordinance language, which would need to be clarified so that the building moratorium on two parcels of land can be lifted, so that all of the parcels can be rezoned, so that a special use permit can be granted. All of this was "the better way" that the county suggested back in July, rather than simply change two lines of code language, which would have had the track pretty much already done by now!

    So the long and short of it is: go to http://www.raceinmason.com/help.html to see how you can contact with support (and anger over the foot-dragging, County incompetence, shakedowns for more fees for more studies) the Commissioners, and just as important, the head person who is handling this at Mason County Planning Office.
     

Share This Page