A heartbroken Shannon Kelton pulled the plug on the 2022 season for Monarch Motor Speedway. An illness in the family forced the hand of the promoter. He has now put the Wichita Falls, Texas, track up for sale.
“We are saddened that we had to make the decision,” Kelton said. “We’re from Dallas, two and a half hours away. [My wife] Misty’s parents became ill, and we are the primary caregivers. We had even bought a house close to Monarch Motor Speedway and planned to move there this year. But, family comes first.”
The Keltons also have a new grandchild, which they cited as another reason for staying in Dallas. He bought Monarch Motor Speedway four years ago after it sat dormant for three years prior. Kelton worked hard to rebuild the weekly racing program. He reached up to 75 cars while racing under the USRA banner.
“We think of the track as a miniature Texas Motor Speedway,” said Kelton. “It was our family dream to own it. We put three seasons of our hearts, our sweat, and our tears into the place.”
Kelton, who runs an auto transport business, doesn’t want to lease the facility to another promoter or have employees run it. He prefers to run his businesses hands-on.
“We couldn’t find someone to run it like we did,” Kelton said. “There’s a trust factor. Most people just wouldn’t be able to keep it to our standards, and that would be hard to take if they didn’t.”
Kelton understands the disappointment from fans and racers about the cancellation of the 2022 season.
“Drivers, car owners, and fans were sad to hear the news, but most were understanding,” Kelton said. “That was the saddest thing for me. I knew many of the locals believed in what we were doing, and built cars to race at the track. It took three years to get the local support we have. We are hoping for a buyer to continue what we started.”
Monarch Motor Speedway features a paved pit area as well as modern grandstands, bathrooms, and concessions on 29 acres of land. Kelton is asking $650,000 for the facility. Interested parties can contact Shannon Kelton at 214-938-1735.
The Outside Groove Director of Photography has written hundreds of stories since the website’s inception. This year marks his 54th year of covering auto racing. Adaskaveg got his start working for track photographer Lloyd Burnham at Connecticut’s Stafford Motor Speedway in 1970. Since then, he’s been a columnist, writer, and photographer, in racing and in mainstream media, for several outlets, including the Journal Inquirer, Boston Herald, Stock Car Racing, and Speedway Illustrated. Among Adaskaveg’s many awards are the 1992 Eastern Motorsport Press Association (EMPA) Ace Lane Photographer of the Year and the 2019 National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA) George Cunningham Writer of the Year.