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|12-09-2007, 09:53 AM||#1|
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Kerr County
Feedback Rating: (0)
Experience: 10+ years
2005 KTM 250sxf
TWS (Texas World Speedway) will continue...for now.
Looks like the new owner's plan on keeping and updating the track!
Owner revamps aging CS raceway
By GREG OKUHARA
Eagle Staff Writer
The Texas World Speedway's new owners plan to upgrade the racetrack to make it more inviting to the public.
Bill Mather, the president of Corps Ventures, the company that purchased the speedway, said improvements have already started.
"I can run it cleaner, neater and more efficient compared to how it has been before," Mather said, adding that his company has begun cleaning and working on the speedway's appearance and will also start road repairs soon.
On Nov. 16, Corps Ventures purchased the 563-acre tract of land from Sharyn Conole, the widow of Richard Conole, who died in January. He had operated the track for nearly three decades.
Mather declined to say how much Corps Ventures paid for the property. The Brazos County Appraisal District's Web site said the 563-acre tract of land is appraised at $3.6 million.
Houston-based Corps Ventures owns several other properties in the Bryan-College Station area, including the Arctic Wolf Ice Center.
Mather said the racetrack is an attractive investment because it sits in College Station's growth corridor. The track uses about 320 acres, leaving the rest of the land for other potential development.
"From a real estate perspective, it's real valuable when you consider all the commercial land around it," he said.
Though he thinks the speedway has the potential to draw out-of-town visitors, Mather said the track is an "under-appreciated and under-utilized" piece of property.
In addition to attracting racing events, Mather said he wants to build a partnership with Texas A&M University to allow engineering students and professors to test new technology.
"I would love to do that," he said. "I'm open to a number of different things."
To his knowledge, Mather said, there has never been an economic impact study to measure Texas World Speedway's effect on the local economy. Mather said he intends to conduct one in the near future.
Barry Biggar, president of the Bryan-College Station Visitors & Convention Bureau, said his organization hasn't done an economic impact study for the track but he hopes Mather and his company do more to promote it.
"Now that it's sold and Bill has his vision for what he wants to do out there, we were certainly excited to hear that," Biggar said. "We will help him in any way we can with marketing and promoting events they have out there."
Mather said 42 weekend events already are planned for 2008. Most of those, as in previous years, are weekend racing events staged by regional car clubs.
Texas World Speedway also hosted the inaugural Big State Festival, which drew an estimated 60,000 people during the two-day event in October.
Biggar said the country music concert drew a "significant amount of people who stayed overnight at our hotels."
At this point, Mather said, there are no plans to work on the grandstands. He said engineering studies he's seen indicate the area isn't safe. Since most of the events at the speedway don't draw major crowds -- although many races are open to the public -- there's no point in fixing the grandstands. Mather said they will remain off-limits.
Also, because of the amount of money required, Mather said his company doesn't plan on upgrading the track to meet professional racing requirements.
Since the Bryan-College Station area is within a three-hour drive of 80 percent of the state's population, Biggar said, the opportunity to keep the track busy is there.
"I've met with Bill about his vision and plans for [the speedway]," Biggar said. "Our organization is very committed to doing whatever we can to make it successful."
"Faster, Faster! Until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death."--Dr. Hunter S. Thompson.
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|12-09-2007, 11:07 AM||#3|
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: under a rock
Feedback Rating: (3)
"I haven't seen the crash, but I think Marc needs to be penalized for two or three seasons! Until I stop racing!"-VR46
|12-09-2007, 11:11 AM||#4|
The Most Intolerable bish
Join Date: Mar 2007
Feedback Rating: (0)
Glad to hear. I havent been back to enjoy the track since the last time i went and it rained all friggin day
Bringing Color To A Face Near You
|12-09-2007, 11:17 AM||#5|
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Kemah Area
Feedback Rating: (9)
|12-09-2007, 11:24 AM||#6|
Twist the Grip, Let'r Rip
Join Date: May 2005
Feedback Rating: (6)