In regard to the shuttered Newport Speedway in Tennessee, a recent Facebook post said, “The owner has plans of reopening soon.” We called Newport Raceway Auto Parts & Towing, which owns the property the track sits on, to verify that.
A representative for the company said that’s “not true.” Unfortunately for race fans, she added that the auto parts and towing business generates more revenue than the track did. Furthermore, Drew and Linda Ramsey, who own the business, do not wish to lease the facility. However, the track could be bought for the right price.
Weichert Realtors — Tiger Real Estate still has the property up for sale on its website. Its asking price is $1,600,000. PeggySue Holt is the broker on record, and reachable at 865-351-2909.
Newport Speedway last ran in 2019 before closing its gates to motorsports. It was built in 1977 as a dirt track, before being converted to pavement in 1988. The 4/10-mile oval features 26 degrees of banking, earning it the nickname “Little Bristol.” It seats a sizeable 4,000 people plus offers tier parking. The facility that has sat dormant for years now would need some TLC to get it back up and running as a racetrack.
The now-defunct United Auto Racing Association (UARA-STARS), a late model stock car touring series, stopped at Newport Speedway 18 times between 2002 and 2013. The series served as a hotbed for many future NASCAR drivers. (For more on the UARA, see “10 UARA-STARS Drivers Who Became NASCAR Stars”.)
Other series that raced Newport Speedway included PASS South, ISCARS Dash Series, and the Southeast Super Trucks.
Currently, Eastern Tennessee only has one operating paved oval with weekly racing, Kingsport Speedway. Lonesome Pine Raceway across the border in Coeburn, Virginia, also puts on shows. Otherwise, pavement racers in the area need to travel more than a couple hours away, whether that’s to the Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway in Tennessee, Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Virginia; or Hickory Motor Speedway in Newton, North Carolina.
The Outside Groove Executive Editor has covered motorsports since 2000. His many awards include the 2019 Eastern Motorsport Press Association (EMPA) Jim Hunter Writer of the Year and the 2013 Russ Catlin Award for Excellence in Motorsports Journalism.