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Published May 18 2010

Red River Valley Speedway: Tony Stewart tickets hot

Danny Schatz figured area racing fans would be excited about the prospect of seeing NASCAR icon Tony Stewart race at a local track. Those fans have followed through.

Stewart is scheduled to race at the West Fargo track on June 23, and tickets went on sale on Saturday. More than 4,000 were sold on Saturday alone.

“We guessed that it would get a good response,” Schatz said. “We’d like to sell it out, but we don’t know how many we’ll get. If we fill her up, that would be fun.

“If we sell it out, maybe we’ll break even on it. It would be fun to break even on something.”

The RRVS seats around 8,000, meaning the June 23 show is cruising toward a sellout.

Schatz took over the operations of the track earlier this spring, leasing it from the Red River Valley Fair Board. He moved the races to Wednesday nights and immediately started doing renovations. With the opening night just more than a week away (May 26), things look different at the track.

The press box has been revamped, the grandstand has gotten a fresh coat of paint, the bar has been redone and the old concession stands – which will be “express” concessions – have sharp new signage.

“We’re starting to shore up some of the issues, and there aren’t a lot of critical issues left,” Schatz said. “It’s looking pretty good, but it would be better if we had another three months.”

Tony Stewart night is one of the main draws of Schatz’s first year running the operation.

Schatz also shortened up the track to a three-eighths mile oval, and the track is very close to being ready for racing.

“The race track looks like we’re within shooting distance of completing it,” Schatz said. “The last foot or so is always the easy part, and that’s where we’re at.

“I think we’re OK, and I hope we’re OK, but until you have the whole barn painted red, it’s not a red barn.”

Tickets for the June 23 show can be purchased at the Petro store on 45th Street by Interstate 94 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.

General admission is $20 per ticket, while reserved seating is $22 in advance and $25 the day of the race. There are discounted prices for kids 12-and-under.

VIP passes are also available for $150, which include a pitchfork steak dinner with Stewart, tickets to the race and two drink tickets.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Kerry Collins at (701) 241-5548