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  • #31
    Does high school football attract the same people as dirt racing? I think it doesn't, but I'm not a track promotor. I don't understand the appeal of women's cage fighting. Evidently that is growing while racing continues to decline. What does that say about our culture?

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    • #32
      Originally posted by racemak View Post
      Does high school football attract the same people as dirt racing? I think it doesn't, but I'm not a track promotor. I don't understand the appeal of women's cage fighting. Evidently that is growing while racing continues to decline. What does that say about our culture?
      It all depends on where your at (IMO) ... just talking my area or surrounding area.

      I actually don't see racing declining especially locally (in Ohio) or dirt racing in general. Heck we have seen a lot of tracks popping back up, bigger events coming on, and we have seen some of the bigger crowds at these events lately such as the Kings Royal weekend probably had their two biggest crowds on Friday which was a good sized crowd just for a little more than a normal WoO show, and then the Kings Royal had their largest crowd ever which was probably at or near 30,000 people at Eldora. Now maybe the local regular shows might see a decline, but I think that is because of people not that excited about some of the divisions, time issues, etc....

      As for football ... Fremont having two different schools (public/private) it might have more of a effect than at Attica or other tracks. Fremont actually has the two schools that use Friday and Saturday for football, but their bigger event happens on Friday with Fremont Ross who rarely plays on the Saturday unless it is a away game.

      Now at Attica I was around when it started and they always stated they would try and stop their season before the football season starts and having a good relationship with the community and not trying to take fans away from the sport or race track or asking local fans to choose between the two. At Attica the Seneca East program plays their games on Friday night almost the entire year unless they play away at a private/catholic school. Now there are a lot of people in the Attica/Republic/rural areas surrounding the track that go to both and I think that small percentage is what the track is trying to not put in a bad spot.

      It would actually be better if Attica went to Saturday nights on football weekends especially in their area where not many games are played on Saturday within a 30 minutes radius. Where Fremont would likely be better off running on Saturday as well if they had to pick a night for football season, but again I think with Fremont since they are "in town" and near the school it would make it tough for them to run events during the football season of trying to be a good partner/community member, etc...

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      • #33
        I’m old enough to have attended races starting in the mid 1950’s. In the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, and part of the 80’s, many tracks raced into early to mid Fall, regardless of football. In fact, many tracks held special events late in the season, and drew fans from other tracks which did close in September. Fremont, for example, hosted the “ Great Lakes Classic, Lawrenceburg the “ Hoosier Fall Classic “, etc. In the mid 60’s, I recall going to Eldora for Sunday afternoon racing, consisting of their weekly classes of super modifieds, etc. USAC Sprints held many season ending 50 and 100 lap events at tracks such as Winchester, Salem, Eldora, Dayton, etc. While football may influence some tracks closing around Labor Day, I’ve always felt that the trend started for other reasons, and then tracks simply followed other tracks lead in doing so. I am a supporter ( season ticket holder ) of many sports, so I’m able to keep busy with no racing, but I do feel that the racing season is too short in Ohio, and in the future I foresee tracks holding fewer events. It’s the latest trend, just like no longer racing into mid October. Just an opinion / observation.

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        • #34
          Yes the trends change over time.
          i see in the future some tracks going to all special events like Mansfield.

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          • #35
            I really don't understand why all the tracks don't run later in the year. I understand attica situation and Fridays are hard enough to get fans but most Saturday tracks are done by September 22nd and that's way too early. weather has changed in ohio over the years and seems like weather is good till mid-late October. Hopefully mercer runs little guy nationals the weekend of September 28th and 29th or I wont have a race to go to on my schedule which is rare. And a update on mercer is that they are planning to run little guy nats if the track don't sell. Its not looking like its going to sell since bill altman turned down 750k offer from a family that runs modifieds in western,pa. I don't know how much tracks are worth but the land and equipment at mercer isnt worth 500k. Seems like the owner is selling it like its a successful place and not run in the ground.

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            • #36
              Originally posted by Muddy99 View Post
              I am a supporter ( season ticket holder ) of many sports, so I’m able to keep busy with no racing, but I do feel that the racing season is too short in Ohio, and in the future I foresee tracks holding fewer events. It’s the latest trend, just like no longer racing into mid October. Just an opinion / observation.
              Agree ... I wonder if PA having the longer schedules if that has helped their teams get stronger over the years where they could compete with the WoO and All-Stars on a regular basis at probably most tracks? Along with we have seen in the last several years that a lot of these PA tracks have really put a lot of money back into their facilities for the fans and teams and wondering if having the longer season helps bring in that money to do it?

              Originally posted by mudinmybeer View Post
              I really don't understand why all the tracks don't run later in the year. I understand attica situation and Fridays are hard enough to get fans but most Saturday tracks are done by September 22nd and that's way too early. weather has changed in ohio over the years and seems like weather is good till mid-late October.
              Agree ... The weather later in the year has been pretty decent depending on what kind of fan you are because it has been decent until late October/early November lately as well especially if you run a day show on Saturday or even Sunday afternoon where you can get in and get out before the sun goes down and still have decent temperatures.

              Seems like February is also better than March for some reason the past 4-5 years with better weather (even though very wet this year) and then it seems to really get cool again in March and of course rainy which we seem to battle a lot longer than normal.

              Comment


              • #37
                Just a few thoughts on why tracks schedule the way they do. Tracks that close early have their reasons for doing so. Friday night tracks start fighting high school football season the end of August or beginning of September. Eroc mentioned that it all depends on your area. Tracks that depend on the local community for most of their race fans surely don't want to go head to head with their local high school. Community involvement has to have a place for a local track promoter to not step on toes and alienate customers.

                Saturday night tracks face the same issues but more so with college football. Many race fans have season tickets for college football games and if the promoter knows his fan base he would be foolish to try and run a racing program that would draw fewer people because they have football tickets. Sunday night tracks face the issue of back to school and see a drop off in their front gate because of it. All together why would a promoter open the gates knowing he will be losing money.

                And speaking of school, many schools now are on a balanced schedule. I know here in Indiana a number of school districts start school early August so that also plays against drawing fans at the local bullring. Another thing that I think hurts racing is fans run out of disposable income. If you have school age kids, with school starting earlier than before money gets tighter and something has to give.

                Not all of us have school age children. However, I'm semi retired so my pay check doesn't go as far as when I worked full time. I now pick and chose more than before and I would personally like to go watch auto racing 3-4 times per week. Just ain't going to happen.

                Smart promoters know their fan base and will schedule accordingly. Yes I would like to see more late season racing but I just don't see it changing much in the future.

                Comment


                • #38
                  In my Wayne county area football is very big for the county and lots of the race people are connected to football.
                  August and September the 2 county fairs takes away 3 weekends. Fairs are a big deal in this rural area and people spend a few hundred doing the fairs with the school bands and kids showing.
                  School starts around Aug. 20 here and football has already happened here with scrimmages a week or 2 ahead of that.
                  School expenses also hit hard.
                  Weather typically has not been good in October around here.
                  Then in October you are competing against some big late model shows.
                  Hilltop, Lakeville and Wayne County have all experimented in the past with running during fair and football with not profitable results over the past years from the 1980s and on.
                  So i am ok with them not running at a loss.
                  Maybe less shows will make a stronger following.
                  That might be a good time for the big shows to be done at select tracks.
                  PA tracks that run so many shows seem to have a different fan base than here in Ohio. Race fans for sure but the Ohio group seems to have various interests where PA seems to have more die hard dedicated race only fans. That is they attend the 30+ races.
                  I think Ohio folks seem to go both Friday and Sat.and that is how they break down their money doing double weekends. That way they get about 40 shows and then move onto other activities come fall and winter.

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    I think what a previous poster was saying was that football has been around forever but back in the day tracks still raced later, and even had special events. Football hasn’t just been invented .

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Baseball, boxing, horse racing, and football are all older than auto racing. The NFL started in the 1920's, but there was high school and college football in the late nineteenth century. When was the first auto race? I think we all know the answer to that.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        No football has not just been invented.
                        tickets are 6-7 for adults cheaper for students
                        lots of social for everyone who wants to do something and cheaper plus supporting your kids, grandkids etc.
                        Most of my family pick football over racing these days as that is the social outlet they are most into.
                        They can go see a sport that is less expensive.
                        People used to not care if races ran late, they were okay with staying out that late. Now they want to be home by midnight. They liked long seasons now some folks dont. Also many local teams out of money and equipment once we get to September.
                        Times are different. Expenses are different.
                        Tracks are building back up it seems this past year.
                        They may have decided they are most profitable by the shorter seasons and dont want to over extend the growth that is happening.
                        Fremont has always battled weather issues.

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by Muddy99 View Post
                          I’m old enough to have attended races starting in the mid 1950’s. In the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, and part of the 80’s, many tracks raced into early to mid Fall, regardless of football. In fact, many tracks held special events late in the season, and drew fans from other tracks which did close in September. Fremont, for example, hosted the “ Great Lakes Classic, Lawrenceburg the “ Hoosier Fall Classic “, etc. In the mid 60’s, I recall going to Eldora for Sunday afternoon racing, consisting of their weekly classes of super modifieds, etc. USAC Sprints held many season ending 50 and 100 lap events at tracks such as Winchester, Salem, Eldora, Dayton, etc. While football may influence some tracks closing around Labor Day, I’ve always felt that the trend started for other reasons, and then tracks simply followed other tracks lead in doing so. I am a supporter ( season ticket holder ) of many sports, so I’m able to keep busy with no racing, but I do feel that the racing season is too short in Ohio, and in the future I foresee tracks holding fewer events. It’s the latest trend, just like no longer racing into mid October. Just an opinion / observation.
                          With the nice weather we tend to see going late into October in recent years it just does not make sense to close shop so early. I too remember racing much later into the year. In Fremont you could see the lights from St Joe Stadium up the street and they even used to encourage the fans in the stands to make noise and in turn the football crowd would return the favor. Good Times! I believe today we live in a politically led or influenced world which has eaten away at the good times and freedoms we all used to enjoy.
                          2018 Race Counter - Total- 24 + (Rainouts-11) Atomic-2, Attica-5, Eldora-8, Fremont-1, Limaland-2, Mansfield- 2, Waynesfield-3, Wayne County-1

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Originally posted by RRacer70 View Post
                            In my Wayne county area football is very big for the county and lots of the race people are connected to football.
                            August and September the 2 county fairs takes away 3 weekends. Fairs are a big deal in this rural area and people spend a few hundred doing the fairs with the school bands and kids showing.
                            School starts around Aug. 20 here and football has already happened here with scrimmages a week or 2 ahead of that.
                            School expenses also hit hard.
                            Weather typically has not been good in October around here.
                            Then in October you are competing against some big late model shows.
                            Hilltop, Lakeville and Wayne County have all experimented in the past with running during fair and football with not profitable results over the past years from the 1980s and on.
                            So i am ok with them not running at a loss.
                            Maybe less shows will make a stronger following.
                            That might be a good time for the big shows to be done at select tracks.
                            PA tracks that run so many shows seem to have a different fan base than here in Ohio. Race fans for sure but the Ohio group seems to have various interests where PA seems to have more die hard dedicated race only fans. That is they attend the 30+ races.
                            I think Ohio folks seem to go both Friday and Sat.and that is how they break down their money doing double weekends. That way they get about 40 shows and then move onto other activities come fall and winter.
                            I see your point, however PA has football, fairs, and various other happenings just like we do. What they do different is Schedule more events, which keeps their $ flowing. Ohio should take notes, racing is strong in PA and it is because they don't seem to bow down to other sports or interests, they focus on racing with blinders on. My point was simply schedule more dates to make up for the lost ones because the cars are so darn expensive and all the teams wanna do is race. Besides diehards are diehards, but any race fan that is truly dedicated will attend races if they are scheduled. Maybe other sports are thriving due to the room given to them? All these sports and fairs have been around longer than most of our tracks and I realize things change, just not liking shorter race seasons. I don't know about you all, but the off season sucks and it does not need to be any longer? Just not a fan of this new trend. I like football too, but my heart is in Racing. just an opinion.
                            Last edited by Racechasser; February 26th, 2018, 03:54 PM.
                            2018 Race Counter - Total- 24 + (Rainouts-11) Atomic-2, Attica-5, Eldora-8, Fremont-1, Limaland-2, Mansfield- 2, Waynesfield-3, Wayne County-1

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Well Mercer in trouble.
                              Sportsman Knox closed
                              Not sure if Tri city Franklin still running
                              and there was another Pa track closed but cant remember name .
                              so those western PA tracks suffered.
                              I think Ohio has so many tracks that some run the late season like Atomic and the end of year big shows takes away from local regular.
                              In the past.
                              when these Ohio tracks ran later season I think people tended to stay closer to home and not travel. Spectators seemed to stay within an hours drive Often families did more together and did not have a personal car for every family member. Now about every member has car and goes there own way. I remember lots of my neighbors would all go to same track not anymore. They got older, quit going, or just went to one occasionally.

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                To clarify my previous post, which appears to have been misunderstood, I’ll word it differently : Football ( especially high school and college ) have been around longer than racing, but for some reason, everyone seems to claim it is football that causes tracks to close early. Tracks DID NOT used to close in early to mid September many years ago, even though football was played then too. I agree that some small town schools might draw away fans from races, but not on a large, across the board scale. With global warming here to stay ( according to scientists, not me ) I would like to race until mid October, especially since I spend the big bucks buying and sponsoring race cars. 🌤🌤

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