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Irwindale Speedway has earned yet another stay of execution.
The facility, currently known as the Irwindale Event Center, was set to close Jan. 31, when the current property owners had planned to evict everyone off the land to begin the process of repurposing it into something other than a motorsports facility.
Opened in 1999, the track initially filed for bankruptcy in 2012. It was sold to Irwindale Outlet Partners LLC in 2013, which allowed a new promoter to operate the track until it needed to be bulldozed to make room for a 700,000-square-foot shopping mall. The track operated on year-to-year agreements for the past three years while the shopping mall project shifted toward accommodating a large truck stop instead.
But with the latest development, it will remain home to a half-mile stock car oval, Formula Drift circuit and a 1/8-mile drag strip. Irwindale Speedway VP of communications Doug Stokes confirmed to Autoweek that the track would have a 2018 season.
“Good news is, suddenly, the track will not close on the 31st,” Stokes said. “This is what we were hoping for. What happened, I can’t exactly say yet, but we don’t have to pick up and leave. We have a new leaseholder and the current landowners are not going to implement the plans they had for the property.”
Stokes said a formal press release with exact lease length details was currently undergoing the approval process and would be released to the public as soon as possible.
Irwindale has hosted 26 NASCAR KN Pro Series/Winston West events since it opened. The track has also hosted USAC, Super Late Model, drift and NHRA events. Stokes was optimistic that many of these events could return this upcoming season.