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2014-08-25 at 14:42

Racing to return

By Leith Dunick,
ENERGY 103 104Play Minute to Win it at 7:20 weekdays mornings with Kaile Jaggard and WIN! on your station for 80’s 90’s and Now…Energy 103 104 Click Here!

Rick Simpson thinks Thunder Bay still feels the need for speed.

In fact, he’s banking on it.

Simpson has leased the quarter-mile Mosquito Speedway dirt track for a weekend next month, and he and his brother plan to bring racing back to the city for two days, starting Sept. 13.

“There hasn’t been racing here in over 11 years,” said Simpson, who plans to get behind the wheel and compete for a trophy.
The idea was hatched when Simpson’s nephew stopped by the track, which closed in 2003 after a nine-year run, and discussed the idea of a one-time event with oval’s owners.

Thunder Bay is a racing town, and while Simpson isn’t sure why it didn’t work out the last time, he’s convinced there’s enough interest from both drivers and fans to attempt a one-time event, with the idea of bringing it back on an annual basis should it prove successful.

“You go to the United States of America, to Superior, Wisc., you see thousands of people there in attendance that love racing and are from Thunder Bay. There are a lot of NASCAR fans here, dirt track fans and we love racing ourselves and we want to bring it back ourselves,” Simpson said.

Fans attending the Thunder Bay Dirt Track Invitational will have a number of different categories to keep them entertained all weekend long, Simpson added.

“We’re going to have Wissota Mid-west modified and Wissota Super Stocks. We’re also going to have outlaw street stocks and the local ice racers will also be there as well,” Simpson said.

He expects between 50 and 60 racers to take part, not bad considering the costs involved.

“It’s a very expensive sport to get into and there’s not a lot of money to be won when you do win,” Simpson said.

“Our thing is we’ll have a one-time deal here and try to make it $2,500 for a win for the Mid-West modified and the Super Stocks. That’s trying to bring out some people and get some cars going again.”

What does the future hold? Simpson isn’t sure.

“Let’s get this first year over with first and we’ll see how we make out. We’ve got a lot of donations from a lot of people helping things out. It’s really expensive to get this happening. Let’s see what happens after this year and we’ll see for next year,” Simpson said.

“We leased the track. It’s not our property, it’s the Harry’s … so we’ll have to obviously talk to the (Harry’s) before we move forward.”

Tickets are $20 for general admission and $30 for pit access.

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We've improved our comment system.
conker2014 says:
8/25/2014 3:48:42 PM
tiredofit says:
As someone who lived close to the old Riverview Raceways, it was not an issue then nor would it be today. We all knew that every Wednesday night was race night and it was loud for a few hours. It was accepted, it was fun and very few, if any complained. But Conker, your life depends on complaining, so go nuts.
8/27/2014 8:54:26 AM
applepie says:
Where can we get more information on the times of the races? Is this just a one weekend event or should I expect to hear cars racing the weekend before. I live in the area and it would be nice to know a little bit more (and when to expect the noise).
8/25/2014 5:01:43 PM
JYDOG says:
You'll hear a little noise for 2 days, then it'll go silent and stay that way, so fear not applepie.
8/26/2014 8:49:16 AM
Shane Caker says:
Good job Mr. Simpson. See ya there....
8/25/2014 6:30:45 PM
TB4life says:
sounds like I got something to this sept 13.
8/25/2014 6:48:05 PM
downtownie says:
applepie! Saturday September 13th and Sunday 14th 2pm to roughly 4 and the muffled noise is intermittent or not steady. 6 and under is free-12 years $15 and Adults 20. In the pits $30, Unless you live on that stretch of Leeper Road you will not hear much, if not at all.
8/25/2014 6:50:36 PM
silverado92 says:
Conker 2014 first numty of the day named apple pie..... why don't you move to an island..... who do you nor wester area people think you are??? Go Away
8/25/2014 8:37:54 PM
tsb says:
8/25/2014 8:42:12 PM
Nolan says:
Oh wonderful! Now the racecars can take over on the weekends to make noise when the police aren't using the gun range during the rest of the week to make more noise. Who would have thought our wild life would suffer noise pollution 30 miles from town.
8/25/2014 9:18:19 PM
karcat says:
Good for these guys, love to see racing back here again,I hope they bring outlaw racing here , if you want to see racing? there at the top of the class on dirt tracks, or any racing,
good luck to these organizers..
8/26/2014 6:33:32 AM
livewire says:
I am all for it. Point me to the tickets. It,s about time and regarding the noise > SUCK IT UP. If people start whining about noise then maybe the airport should also move and there is enough noise from jets & small aircraft. I am 110% for racing. Better on the track than the streets.
8/26/2014 7:19:32 AM
Joey_J says:
Best wishes to the Simpsons. Hope that the weekend is a complete success and that maybe we can get the old Mosquito track utilized on a more frequent basis -- maybe not weekly races, but monthly.

Not a race fan myself, but support any initiative that will give people entertainment options, potentially drive some tourism our way.
8/28/2014 12:27:38 PM
joey joe joe jr. shabadoo says:
Glad to see!! Should be a great weekend event!!
8/31/2014 9:41:37 PM
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