Folks, I am VERY happy to pass along the word that the venerable Sunshine Speedway in St. Petersburg, Florida, long the home of the Gulfcoast Classic and the breeding ground for God alone knows how many amazing drivers, has passed into the hands of Robert Yoho, driver and, now, benefactor. It’s hard to imagine the fan interest on opening night, but if there’s not an absolute turnaway crowd I will be amazed. This is one of those all-too-rare stories in racing that fans everywhere rightly ought to celebrate. Once at Eldora Speedway I saw a guy wearing a T-shirt that read HERE’S A GOOD IDEA….TEAR DOWN A MALL BUILD A RACE TRACK. I love that. In fact, that strip-mall where Heidelberg Raceway used to stand strikes me as ripe for Caterpillars and renewal.

But in the case of Sunshine Speedway (or whatever it’ll finally be called), there’s no need. It was never torn down in the first place. And now we know it will again find use as a race track. The history speaks for itself; all you have to do is Google the name and you’ll see it for yourself. some of the greatest drivers in racing history have driven there, and now we’re about to be treated to the generations succeeding them. Personally, I can’t wait. Honestly, I plan on going at some point, with my daughter and her two kids, just to have that generational experience of passing on this singular tradition. The boys will absolutely love the loud engines and the way the ground shakes beneath their small feet. They’ll look up and—I swear—I believe they’ll say “Grampy, this is cool.”

Which it absolutely will be. More news from this small space as well as many others.


About johnwylam1957

I'm a poet and teacher now living in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
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One Response to SUNSHINE SPEEDWAY TO REOPEN; Now The Question Is When

  1. akismet-e77d1dff1b7dde9b96884922e2fb2fcb says:

    Good luck to the new owners. I really hope the state gave them a favorable lease. They were only talking 5 years and then the state could take possession of it for their roadway. I also hope they fully understand the unbelievable amount of money that is going to be needed just to get this place open.

    1. There is NO seating at all. Up to code seating for even 5000 people is going to be several $100k to get.
    2. No concession stand no bathrooms.
    3. The drag strip is a complete mess as well. Dont try to sit on the stands.

    I would be willing to bet they are going to have 1 million minimum to get the circle track up and running. All for a property that in the end does not belong to them Risky stuff

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