State paves the road to Motorsports Park

Posted: Monday, May 11, 2015

By TRAVIS WEIK [email protected]

 

Indianapolis is waving the green flag for the go-ahead to a new road for  New Castle Motorsports Park.

A provision in the new state budget grants Henry County $400,000 before June 15 “to enhance the viability of the New Castle Motorsports Park by means of improvements to the track public access.” The money will come from the Motorsports Improvement Fund, a resource created by Indiana lawmakers in 2013 to invest in Indiana-based motor sports companies.

Former IndyCar driver Mark Dismore built the New Castle Motorsports Park south of I-70 in 2013. According to NCMP website, the go-karting facility is home to the Kart Racers of America, a club racing kart organization with 14 races a year with events averaging over 200 entries, and hosts many events throughout the year, including the United States Pro Kart Series, SKUSA events, World Karting Association National and Divisional Karting Championships, local club events and special events throughout the year.

NCMP Manager Mike Adams said the kart park hosts about 30 local, regional, national, and international races a year. “We’ve always been able to maintain a very busy race schedule,” Adams said. The track manager estimated that the Motorsports Park brings $2.5 million in tourism and commerce to Henry County every year.

“We’re always trying to build and get more people into the area,” Adams said.

Adams said the grant was a joint effort from many community organizations. The NCMP manager thanked State Representative Tom Saunders for fighting for Henry County at the Statehouse, as well as Mayor Greg York, New Castle Police Chief Brad Catron, the New Castle-Henry County Economic Development Corporation and everyone who has supported the project locally.

“Everybody has come together to get that done. It’s nice that it’s come together,” Adams said.

“The Motorsports Park is a unique asset to our county. It’s known across the nation,” said EDC President and CEO Corey Murphy. “The access road is the first thing that visitors see. First impressions are important.”

According to Murphy, the economic development group has already begun designing and engineering work on the new road. Murphy said the Henry County Redevelopment Commission has invested $100,000 into the new road. The construction work on the new road leading to the Motorsports Park could begin by the end of this summer, Murphy said.

“We were working on the project anyway,” Murphy noted. “We’ll be able to do more with the funding.”

Rep. Saunders said he has been working on the securing the improvement funds for two years. Saunders pointed out that because the money comes from the Motorsports Fund, it cannot be used for projects like filling potholes or repair damaged county roads. The improvements to the Motorsports Park can increase tax revenue for the county, Saunders noted, which could help fund infrastructure projects.

“We are grateful to Rep. Tom Saunders and his colleagues in the General Assembly for making this possible,” Murphy said.

The New Castle Motorsports Park rents karts to the public 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, if there is not a tournament going on. It is free for fans to watch visit the park and watch races. For more information on NCPM, visit www.newcastleraceway.com or call 987-8090.