Thursday, April 07, 2011

With Track Improvements Still Ongoing, ADRL and Memphis International Raceway Agree to Cancel 2011 Event at MIR

O'FALLON, MO (April 7, 2011) –American Drag Racing League (ADRL) and Memphis International Raceway (MIR) officials announced today that the May event scheduled at MIR for the 2011 season has been canceled.

The ADRL had scheduled an event at MIR on May 20-21, but executives from the facility and sanctioning body determined it was best for the series and track to cancel the May event as the facility continues to make necessary track and facility improvements.

"In speaking with the management team at MIR, we mutually agreed to cancel the Memphis stop on the ADRL Tour in 2011," ADRL Executive Vice President Jeff Fortune said. "The MIR management and staff is doing all they can to make Memphis a first-class facility but our fans and racers have come to expect a high-level event from us, and if we can't deliver that, we're not going to do it."

Current track improvement projects include scraping and grinding the drag racing surface, installing and upgrading the CompuLink timing system, upgrading and painting concession stands and restrooms, but the timeframe for completing the improvements in time for the May event just cannot be guaranteed at this time.

ADRL executives decided to cancel the May race for 2011, allowing the track additional time to make all the necessary improvements in time for a possible event later this year. Announced in March as the 10th stop on the 2011 ADRL schedule, the event was originally planned to serve as MIR's first official event under the new ownership group.

Formerly Memphis Motorsports Park, Memphis International Raceway was recently purchased by Moroso Investment Partners, the ownership group of Palm Beach International Raceway (PBIR), in Jupiter, Fla.

"We are disappointed that we need to postpone the MIR grand opening event with the ADRL," said Jason Rittenberry, President and CEO, Memphis International Raceway. "We are working diligently to take MIR to the next level and develop it into a first-class racing facility.

"Unfortunately, the track was not maintained to our standards during the ownership change. It was left in a dilapidated state and there was excessive weather damage to the facility. Our fans and racers have high expectations for MIR and we plan to meet and exceed those expectations."

The next ADRL race, the Safety-Kleen Spring Drags II, takes place April 15-16 at Palm Beach International Raceway (PBIR) in Jupiter, Fl.