The expected arrival of a cold front and frigid temperatures has prompted the cancellation of this weekend’s World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series Outlaw Boot Hill Showdown at Dodge City Raceway Park.
"The Outlaw Boot Hill Showdown is traditionally an outstanding event that everyone looks forward to attending, however, in the best interest of the fans and racers that we have decided to cancel this weekend’s event at Dodge City Raceway Park," said Carlton Reimers, Series director, in a statement late Tuesday.
Tommie Estes, DCRP general manager, said it just made sense to cancel the event.
"With as cold as it’s going to be it wouldn’t draw the crowd it would if the weather was good," he said. "It wasn’t good for the teams, it wasn’t good for the fans and it makes sense to cancel it and bring it back for 2018."
Track and Series officials are working together to determine a 2018 date for the Outlaw Boot Hill Showdown at Dodge City Raceway Park. Stay tuned to the World of Outlaws website and social media for future announcements of the Outlaw Boot Hill Showdown 2018 date.
This weekend’s weather hasn’t changed much the last few days. Friday’s high is expected to be in the upper 40s with gusty winds. Friday night’s low is expected to be in the low 20s with windy conditions. Saturday will improve with a high in the mid 50s, but Saturday night’s low is expected to be near freezing.
All advanced tickets purchases will be honored at the 2018 date when announced. Ticket holders may request a refund by mailing their ticket stub back to World Racing Group office, 7575 W. Winds Blvd. NW D, Concord, NC 28027 for a refund. Refunds will not be issued at the track.
City manager Cherise Tieben said she was told World of Outlaws wouldn’t travel from North Carolina to Dodge City for just one day of racing, that they required a two-day event.
"It was a joint decision," Estes said. "I have a lot of money tied up in this. I’d have a few hundred die-hards who would come to the event in bad weather, but for us to be successful, I need everything perfect.
"That cold with winds isn’t perfect."
The joint commission — Dodge City and Ford County commissions — approved a subsidy increase from $190,000 to $250,000 pending a 2018 agreement to bring World of Outlaws to Dodge City in 2018.
"The decline of racers and attendance is not a Dodge City issue, it is a nationwide issue with race tracks," city coordinator Melissa McCoy said at the meeting. "For example, we were able to host the World of Outlaws race this year because (the track) they raced in last year is no longer operational."
The $60,000 subsidy increase would decrease by $25,000 if the World of Outlaws race for 2018 is not made.
"I know when we had it here it was big," city commissioner Kent Smoll said. "Ticket sales were great."
With the cancellation, Dodge City Raceway Park has concluded the 2017 season.
The World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series heads to The Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the final weekend of the 2017 season. The most prestigious dirt racing event in the country, the Textron Off Road World Finals returns Nov. 2-4 for 3 days of heart-pounding, clay-slinging action on the lightning-fast, 4/10-mile oval. The Textron Off Road World Finals brings together the top series in the sport — the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series, the World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series and the Super DIRTcar Series Big-Block Modifieds — for a full weekend of racing, culminating in the crowning of all three series champions. For more information on Textron Off Road World Finals visit www.worldofoutlawsworldfinals.com.
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