In February, 2011, the current ownership group, headquartered in Palm Beach, FL, purchased the facility and once again, returned racing to the Mid-South. Building one step at a time, the facility has come back to life. The dragstrip, road course and autocross facilities were the first to return to the scene followed by driving schools and testing at the three-quarter mile paved oval. Today, Memphis International Raceway is a multi-faceted racing facility boasting three complete tracks, a high performance road course, and historic quarter-mile dragstrip and the three quarter-mile tri-oval track – home to the Rusty Wallace Racing Experience and Rusty Wallace Karting Experience. Memphis International Raceway attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors annually and is ranked as one of Tennessee’s top destinations.
“Memphis International Raceway is thrilled to collaborate with Rusty Wallace Racing Experience and Champion Racing Association powered by JEGS bringing the return of oval track racing to our facility. Race fans and the community overall felt the void left when racing left the Mid-South. Today, we announce its return,” said Pam Kendrick, Vice President and General Manager. “Memphis International Raceway is proud to have our brand associated with Rusty Wallace Racing Experience and Champion Racing Association, both well–respected pioneers in the industry. I invite all area race enthusiasts to witness history in the making as MIR hosts its inaugural race on the oval in conjunction with Rusty Wallace Racing Experience and Champion Racing Association powered by JEGS. This is what Mid-South race fans have been waiting for, come out and show your support as we continue to grow and expand our racing programs through valuable partnerships and our vision for the future of Memphis International Raceway,” said Kendrick.
Memphis International Raceway and Rusty Wallace Racing Experience have worked together to bring racing back to the Mid-South and will partner in the “Racings Back! Memphis 250” on October 26. “The Rusty Wallace Racing Experience is proud that our partnership with Memphis International Raceway continues to expand,” remarked NASCAR legend Rusty Wallace. “I was just out at MIR a couple of weeks ago giving Ride-Alongs with Rusty Wallace Racing Experience, and I really enjoyed my time back in the car on this great racetrack. It was clear that the track is still in great shape and we need to bring racing back to Memphis, so we got to work on bringing racing back to MIR.”
Wallace added, “We are very excited to make the announcement that we are bringing oval track racing back to MIR with the Racing’s Back! Memphis 250 on October 26th. We look forward to two great races with the twin CRA 125’s and frankly we can’t wait to see racing back on the oval and to welcome back the fans to one of the great short tracks in America.”
“Everyone at CRA is very proud that Rusty Wallace Racing Experience and Memphis International Raceway chose our group to be the one to bring oval track racing back to this awesome facility,” explained R.J. Scott, Managing Partner with Champion Racing Association. “The track is one of the nicest short tracks in the country and will be perfect to host this type of a special event that should attract the top late model racers from all over the country. In these times, it is rare that we get the opportunity to help bring a short track back from being idle, so we want to take every chance we can to assist in bringing a short track back to life!”
“The Rusty Wallace Racing Experience relocated our permanent southeastern headquarters to MIR this year with a new 10,000 square foot maintenance facility,” said Mark Ebert, President of RWRE. Ebert continued, “We can’t wait to share all the improvements we’ve made at MIR with the race teams and the fans as we welcome racing back to this historic short track. Plus with the addition of the RWRE Shootout we are going to give a few aspiring racers the chance to race against others in equally prepared RWRE Late Models, it should be a great opportunity for some new racers and a great show for the fans.”
Both CRA races with the “Racing’s Back! Memphis 250” will be special post-season events with the ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS event paying $5000 to win and the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Presented by Chevrolet Performance event paying $4000 to win. Each event will count yellows and utilize just four tire races with a break at lap 75 to refuel and make adjustments. There will be an open practice on Friday, October 25th for both series. The tentative schedule of events calls for pits to open on Saturday at 7am, practice to begin at 9:30, the RWRE Shootout at Noon, and qualifying for the late model divisions beginning at 12:30 pm. The Memphis 250 race program will begin at 2:00 pm; all times are Central Time.
For more information, about Memphis International Raceway visit www.racemir.com for more information about Rusty Wallace Racing Experience visit www.RacewithRusty.com. For more information about the ARCA / CRA Super Series powered by JEGS and the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Presented by Chevrolet Performance, visit www.cra-racing.com.