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Milwaukee won't hold NASCAR races in 2010

17 December 2009

The operators of the Milwaukee Mile announced today that the scheduled 2010 Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series races will not be held at the track.

The track is operated by the Wisconsin State Fair Park Board, which has not been able to secure a promoter for the 2010 season. The truck race was scheduled for June 18, with the Nationwide Series race scheduled for June 19 at the historic 1-mile oval, which opened in 1903.

NASCAR is looking at replacing those races on the schedule.

"We have learned that the promoter cannot meet the terms of their agreement," NASCAR spokesman Ramsey Poston said in a statement. "NASCAR was aware of this possibility and we have been working on alternate opportunities on the 2010 schedule for both series and will announce those soon."

NASCAR's sanction had been with a group that the fair board had a letter of intent with to promote the races, but that deal fell through in early November.

"For the past seven years, the Wisconsin State Fair Park Board has been committed to maintaining and underwriting national racing at the historic Milwaukee Mile race track," the board said in a statement. "Since 2003, the Fair Park has subsidized race operations from $1 million to $3 million each year.

"This money has come from revenue generated by visitors to the State Fair and other events held at the Park. The Fair Park has invested these substantial amounts in an effort to keep two national race weekends at The Mile. However, even the profitable NASCAR race weekend does not generate sufficient revenue to cover the costs of the other races as well as promoter operating expenses. It saddens us to say there will not be a national race held at the Milwaukee Mile for the 2010 season."

The Fair Park Board has spent the last six months in negotiations with four potential promoters and reduced its licensing fee from $1.8 million in 2006 to a proposed $90,000 in 2010. The board stated that NASCAR even referred to the board a group that had extensive experience and knowledge of racing but that group declined to move ahead with the contract because the margin for profitability was too thin.

"Any possibility for a profitable operation would be eliminated if the promoter accepted liability for future track improvements," the board stated. "While the Fair Park will continue to fund $1.5 million each year of track debt service, regardless of whether there is a national race, the Fair Park cannot take on the financial responsibility for additional track improvements."

The track will remain open for car clubs and driving schools with the hopes of securing NASCAR races in 2011, the board's statement said.

The Milwaukee Mile is the second track that was on the Nationwide and Truck schedules that will not conduct races next year. Memphis Motorsports Park closed last month.


by Sporting News / NASCAR Wire Service


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