Excitement was in the air, as well as rain clouds, during yesterday’s ground breaking ceremony of the Miller Motorsports Park at the Deseret Peak Complex.
During the event Larry H. Miller again stated that of all the undertakings he has been involved with, “this is the most exciting project” he’s ever done.
Throughout his mini-speech, Miller praised the Tooele County Commission for welcoming his development and said, “We decided to come here for a bunch of reasons, but three of them are standing right here,” referring to commissioners Dennis Rockwell, Colleen Johnson, and Matt Lawrence.
He also noted former commissioner Gene White’s efforts in the matter.
Johnson said, “This will be a good draw for the county and will put us on the map for something good.”
Rockwell said he hopes the racers who come as tourists to the county will shop in the local areas and agreed the raceway was a great addition to the Tooele Valley.
Lawrence said to get a man of Miller’s “stature and vision” to build such a facility in the county is a significant thing. “It gives notoriety to our county,” he added.
Miller said one of the major perks of placing the track at the Deseret Peak Complex was the benefit of having facilities such as museums, horse areas and motocross tracks already in place.
Miller’s plans for the 4.5 mile road raceway were announced last December and since then interest in the project has been booming. Five or six major races have already contacted Miller about the 2006 racing season.
Miller attributes some of the excitement about the project to world famous track designer Alan Wilson and said, “this will be the crown jewel of his career.”
Miller also announced that Wilson will be the general manager of the facility.
In February Wilson, who has built numerous tracks around the world including Las Vegas International Speedway, Laguna Seca, Daytona International Speedway, Beaverun, Mid- America Motorplex, and Barber Motorsports Park said “this is the one I want to put my name on and have as my legacy.”
The raceway itself will be North America’s longest and will contain over a dozen turns. In addition to the raceway which can be divided into two separate courses, there will also be a new karting track to replace the existing Black Rock Raceway.
(Vehicles used on this type of track are like go-carts but way faster.) Miller said just like the Oldsmobile commercials, “this is not your father’s go-cart.”
Primary services at the facility will include private club memberships, track rental, vehicle storage, high-performance driving school and riding courses, catering, concessions and fuel.
The track will be landscaped and spectators will have multiple views of the course from a single vantage point.
On the home page of the motorsports park site (www. millermotorsportspark.com) Miller notes, “If nobody came to watch, we’d still go racing. I just want to go out there and drive myself silly.”
But not having any spectators show up for national races is very unlikely.
Miller estimates that over time, tens of thousands of people will visit the track for threeday weekend events. While it is not currently a NASCAR race site, he said two other non-oval tracks exist in the nation and that this one could become the third, though he says he could take several years before that happens.
“First and foremost, this is for the racers,” said Miller noting that the track would not just be for the wealthy, but for the average person as well. “I want to reach as broad of a spectrum as possible,” said Miller.
It is anticipated that the track will open in August of this year. High performance cars and motorcycles are what the track is designed for.