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Jon Bachmeier, Fargo, Published May 11 2013

Letter to the editor: Mismanagement kills speedway

As a driver and fan of the Red River Valley Speedway, it saddens me to see how the current fair board and management portrays racing as “not of interest anymore.” It may not be in their interest anymore, but the sport is thriving in Grand Forks, Jamestown, N.D., Fergus Falls, Ada and Glyndon, all in Minnesota.

These tracks don’t have the population base like Fargo, but they are all competing for the same entertainment dollar that the fair management claims is pulling people away from RRVS.

The current manager and board need to stop making excuses and look to history as to why racing has been on a decline at RRVS the past few years. It all started when the board terminated the contract of a long-standing manager who had an interest in making the speedway successful and then cycled through a series of fair managers who had no experience in operating a speedway.

Those grandstands weren’t expanded to hold 8,500 for concert-goers on fair days but rather for race fans who had been coming since 1967. If their claim of losing money for years is true, then that says more about their poor management than it does about the lack of “interest” in racing.

The area has proved that if you provide a good product, people will come to one of the finest racing facilities in the Upper Midwest.

Let’s face it, the fair board and management took the easy path to eliminate racing from the facility because they had no “interest” in working hard to get it back to its former glory. I wonder why they didn’t do the same for the fair when it was losing money for years.