Central Missouri Speedway poised to start season with spring cleanup, practice sessions
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February 28, 2014  |  by Sam Stoecklin

WARRENBRUG, Mo. -- Central Missouri Speedway in Warrensburg, Missouri, the fastest high-banked clay oval in the Midwest, is just over a month away from launching its grand reopening in April. Over the years, promoters Earl and Susan Walls, who are entering their 19th year at the track, have held court over 390 nights of competition.

For the 2014 season 21 race nights are planned featuring four weekly race divisions and visiting car classes each week. A whopping $357,770 in purse money is up for grabs throughout the year to drivers competing in various events.

Despite sitting idle for the past two seasons, over 60 drivers recently pre-registered to race at the track this year. Drivers and fans spoke and CMS listened, marking a welcome return of fast, fair, efficient, and family fun to area racing.

Drivers competing at CMS expect fair competition, a knowledgeable and friendly staff, and most importantly, cash payouts without waiting in line for a check after a hard night of racing. Fans making their way through the admission gates will enjoy competition from the absolute best dirt-track drivers.

Weekly classes include Modifieds, B-Modifieds, Street Stocks, and the new Pure Stock division. This season’s visiting classes include WAR Sprint Car Series, ULMA Late Models, Allstar Midget Series, Show-Me Vintage Racing Series, Midwest Lightning Sprints, Grand Nationals, Mid-America Lightning Sprints, and Mod Lites.

CMS is putting the call out to volunteers to help with sprucing up the grounds in preparation for the first night of racing in late April. Volunteers are needed to assist with the spring cleaning event, scheduled for Saturday, March 29 at 9 a.m. (rain date is the following Saturday, April 5).

Volunteers are encouraged to bring rakes and work gloves. A free lunch will be served at Noon for all volunteer workers. Items on the to-do list include trimming, painting, raking, and general cleanup of the speedway grounds. Volunteers will meet on the pit side of the speedway at the large outbuilding.

Two open Test & Tune practice sessions follow the cleanup weekend. The first, a day practice, takes place on Saturday, April 12 with gates opening at 10 a.m. Cars practicing will hit the track by 11 a.m. with the session lasting until 3 p.m.

The second practice takes place during the evening on the following Saturday, April 19, with gates opening at 4 p.m. Cars are expected to hit the track by 5 p.m. The session is expected to last until approximately 8 p.m.

Very limited concessions will be available during the practice sessions on the pit side of the speedway. Grandstand admission is absolutely free to fans, pit passes are $20 for anyone entering the pits.

Season passes for race fans are now on sale. Passes include ALL 21 scheduled race events at the track throughout the year. Adult passes $215, Military and Senior Citizens 65+ $160, and Kids passes for those aged six to twelve $100.

CMS business partners thus far include Cliff Harris car dealerships of Warrensburg, KOKO AM 1450, Midwest Coating, 610 Sports Radio, Better Country KIX 105.7, Comfort Inn of Warrensburg, KMMO 102.9 FM, and 98.5 FM The Bar. Track, presenting, car class, banner ads, website ads, and sign ad sponsorships are open to those businesses looking to become involved in racing.

Several new pieces of heavy equipment have recently been acquired for use at the track and all new communication radios are ordered and on their way for speedway officials. The track also plans to utilize the popular Speednet website to post results and standings.

In 2011, an independent study regarding the track’s effect on the local economy was conducted. Some of the findings revealed details on surveyed drivers and fans and their spending habits in the Warrensburg community. CMS is proud to be a part of the community and to be an economic contributor for the economy and by providing work opportunities in over 30 positions at the track.

The average amount spent by drivers in each car class was as follows: Modified drivers $96, B-Modified drivers $88, Late Model drivers $87, and Street Stock drivers $76. The average casual fan spent $56.

The most popular destinations were along the main Hwy 13 corridor in and around the intersection with Hwy 50 and included five established filling stations/quick shops, retail and grocery stores, fast-food restaurants, family style sit-down restaurants, parts stores, and miscellaneous businesses such as car washes and specialized race shops.

In 2011, there were 22 race night/events held. The average car count in 2011 all classes were 72 (max 98/min 58). Car class averages were: Modifieds 27, Late Models 12, B-Modifieds 16, and Street Stocks 15.

Using a sample of one-third of the car counts, total average spent, and total number of race nights, simple and ultra-conservative math sampling reveals that Modified drivers spent an average of $864 per race night for a yearly total of $19,008. Late Model drivers spent $348 per race night for a yearly total of $7,656. B-Modified drivers spent an average $484 per race night for a yearly total of $10,648, while Street Stock drivers spent $380 per race night for an average of $8,360 per race night.

A sampling of casual fans/pit members spent an average of $14,000 per race night over the season for a yearly total of $308,000. On average, $16,076 was spent on race day/night with a conservative estimate of $353,672 spent in the community for the five-month long season.

CMS is located 3.5-miles north of Warrensburg, MO from the junction of Highways 50 and 13 in Warrensburg just north of the new by-pass round-a-bout or from the Higginsville exit off I-70, south on Highway 13 for twelve and half miles.

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