Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

March 11, 2011

Potentially Great New Ovals for INDYCAR

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 2:40 pm

There are two multi-purpose race tracks that are ideally situated geographically in the heartland of America. One is Memphis Motorsports Park and the other is Gateway east of St. Louis. Neither is ‘cookie cutter’ and neither runs any NASCAR series any more. Indy Cars have not run at Gateway for many years.

A Florida based group of three business people have an LLC called Moroso Investment Partners. They are big NASCAR fans and have now picked up three closed or near-closed racing facilities for pennies on the dollar. Their first property is located in Palm Beach, Florida. The two new acquisitions are former Dover Motorsports properties that languished.

Given the number of race tracks that are owned by NASCAR through ISC or by Bruton Smith’s SMI, outside ownership of tracks is refreshing. But who are these guys? The first things that pop up when looking into that group are lawsuits from contractors and former employers, which is never a great sign.

Joe Lubeck, Raymond Graziotto and J.C. Solomon are partners, and all are widely diversified in several commercial real estate sectors. They are also racing fans said to be looking to capitalize on the success of NASCAR. No one knows whether they have interest in Indy Cars or whether anyone from INDYCAR has been in contact with them, or whether their intent is to focus on NASCAR.

It is easy to see how great Midwest coverage by Indy Car in much the same way NASCAR captured the South might be an attractive option. Given Randy Bernard’s proclivities toward quality promotion of entities he leads, tremendous potential lies in the Moroso properties given the right relationship. Here is hoping they are already steps ahead of us.




  1. I think both of these ovals are worth a try.

    They are big NASCAR fans, and this concerns me. However, how many races can NASCAR have. Yes, Randy needs to give these guys a call.

    And Kudos to those involved getting Firestone back for a couple of years.

    Comment by M. Miller — March 11, 2011 @ 5:29 pm | Reply

  2. More than any other oval, I’d like to see the Indy cars return to Pocono. After all, they were whom that track was built for in 1971, and the competition was always good.

    Comment by DOUG — March 11, 2011 @ 5:31 pm | Reply

  3. Pocono needs resurfaced and safer barrier walls before anything else. But I agree Indycar should be there.

    Comment by The Truth — March 11, 2011 @ 9:05 pm | Reply

    • Unfortunatly the family who owns it are too cheap to cut the grass on the infield, let alone install proper fencing on the straights and resurface that massive bump on turn 2.

      Comment by hates crappies hates gomers — March 13, 2011 @ 12:05 pm | Reply

  4. From their track record at Palm Beach International (and what they said at their presser following the purchase), these guys seem to be more interested in promoting drag racing than oval tracks, whether it be IndyCar or NASCAR.

    One slight problem with IndyCars at Gateway. Attendance. Or lack thereof. They tried racing at Gateway. CART did. The IRL did. They didn’t draw flies. CART at least could use the excuse that they pulled the stupid move of scheduling their race the same weekend as the 500. For the IRL, fans just didn’t bother to show up at all.

    To put it in your words. Gateway failed. Tw!ce.

    Comment by Steven Kornya — March 12, 2011 @ 3:39 am | Reply

  5. Memphis is worth a shot.

    Gateway doesn’t have history on its side, despite how well suited it is for Indycars though I think its worht giving the track another chance.

    The road course at Palm Beach would make a better event than St Pete as well.

    Comment by hates crappies hates gomers — March 13, 2011 @ 12:03 pm | Reply

    • It is my understanding, and I may be incorrect, that Gateway is not running races of any type at all in the future.

      Comment by Greg Ryhal — March 14, 2011 @ 8:20 pm | Reply

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