Beckley Motor Speedway Under New Ownership

Beckley Motor Speedway Under New Ownership

Randy Kinder now owns the renamed Beckley Motor Speedway, a 3/8-mile dirt track in Mount Hope, West Virginia. However, don’t call him the promoter, nor will he designate one in that role.

“I’ll have everyone as promoters,” Kinder, 56, of Radford, Virginia, said. “Everyone who likes Beckley Motor Speedway — you, me, racers, fans, the tech man, flagger, concession workers, track crew — are all promoters. It is not logical to appoint one person as a ‘promoter.’ If we love a racetrack, we’re all its promoters.”

Background Behind the Deal

Kinder has raced for 35 years. A few years ago, he sold all his late models and concentrated on his furniture business, NRV Furniture. Then, last year, an offer he could not refuse came to him. Beckley Motor Speedway was for sale. The owner named his price, and Kinder agreed to it.

“Beckley Motor Speedway was used pretty hard,” said Kinder. “It was old and worn.”

When Kinder investigated further, his heart told him buying the track was the right thing to do.

“I was impressed with the heartfelt love that the local people had for the track,” Kinder said. “Kids grew up into adulthood there and had happy memories of going to the races every week, sitting with their dads, and having a good time.”

Kinder believes he’s on a mission, one that he shares with every person stepping foot into the track.

“As owner of this speedway … I will not let these people down,” said Kinder. “I see what the track means to the people, and we are here to serve those people. Everyone I hire has to keep one word in mind: happiness. I want Beckley to be happy. I want the fans to be happy, and the drivers. The employees have to be happy when they are working.”

Changes to Beckley Motor Speedway

Kinder commutes nearly two hours to the track. He often puts in 16-hour days, forgetting to eat until a volunteer brings him some home cooking.

“We are leveling the tech sheds, concession stands, and bathrooms in the pits,” Kinder said. “We are building a 30′ x 60′ tech shed, where cars can be scaled and teched, four at a time, when they come off the track. We’re removing telephone poles in the pits to make more room for more cars.”

Kinder’s adding new LED lightning and a catchfence. He’s stripping the VIP towers and installing new drywall. New concession stands will serve fans and racers. The existing concession stand on the fan’s side will become a merchandise store. Local businesses, such as Boyd Caterpillar, have donated equipment and services to help Kinder prepare the facility.

“Yes, we will have French fries, something the fans did not have in the past,” said Kinder. “All of our food will be top quality.”

Streamlining the Program

Kinder has focused on improving the experience for those attending races at Beckley Motor Speedway.

“There was an admission booth where cars paid as they entered the property,” Kinder said. “It caused traffic to back up for quite a distance, delaying fans from seeing the action. We are removing that booth, allowing cars to enter and park, and then buy admission tickets.”

Kinder pledges to finish the show at a decent hour.

“The days of the races ending at 4 a.m. are gone,” said Kinder. “This is a huge concern of mine. With Saturday-night racing beginning between 7 and 8 p.m., the show should be over by 11 p.m.”

Not only will the show run more efficiently, Kinder looks to add some fun. He’s taking suggestions for the track’s mascot.

“So far, Mothman, who is a local legend, is leading in votes,” Kinder said. “Mothman first appeared in West Virginia in 1966. There is a museum devoted to him.”

Beckley Motor Speedway will host big events in addition to their weekly show. The American All-Star Series will visit three times. On Memorial Day, the super late models will run for $7,500. On July 4, the USA 100 will pay $20,000 to the victor of the Southern All Star Racing Series event.

The track holds its first practice this weekend. It plans to open its season on Saturday, May 14.

“Come to Beckley — it is a place where you will look forward to coming back to all week,” said Kinder said. “We will make the racetrack the best experience possible for the fans and the community.”

Randy Kinder.