Rev your engines
Grand Ol’ Lady ready for summer of racing
The Grand Ol’ Lady will bring the noise again to Monett this summer, as a new track manager is gearing up for weekly races at the Monett Motor Speedway on Chapell Drive.
Scott Dawson, of Battlefield, has leased the 3/8-mile, 11-degree banked track, for the year, aiming to build attendance and set the longest-running dirt track in Missouri up for more years of success.
“We’ve been racing there for a couple years, and this opportunity was given to us to take over, and we’d rather do that instead of seeing it die,” Dawson said. “My son drives in the Midwest Mods. We signed the lease paperwork on June 4, and we’re planning on doing weekly races every Saturday starting on June 19.”
Dawson said plans to lease the track were in the works earlier this year, and as summer has crept closer, he’s heard more about racing.
“A lot of people begged for the track to be back open,” he said. “But, that wasn’t part of our decision to lease it, because I didn’t start hearing that until after we made our decision.
“We’re doing it for this year, and depending on the turnout, we may do it again next year. We are taking this year-by-year, but we’d love to do it for several years if it’s feasible.”
Weekly races will feature six classes: B-Mods, Midwest Mods, POWRi, Super Stocks, Pure Stocks and Hornets. Participation at this point is an unknown, but Dawson said he hopes to have 15 cars in each class each week. Practices and play dates have been held in May and June to get ready for the regular season.
Dawson is also hoping to offer some new attractions.
“We’re looking to bring in some bigger features too, like monster trucks and winged sprint cars,” he said. “The sprint cars will be on July 3, and we’re still waiting for confirmation on the monster trucks. We’re thinking September, but it could be in August.”
The Speedway will also host the Four-State Championships again this year, the last regular-season event of the year before a short fall season occurs.
“We’re happy to keep the Championships in Monett,” Dawson said.
The track is located at 685 Chappell Drive in Monett. General grandstand admission for the regular-season Saturdays is $15 for adults 18-and-over, and children under 18 will be admitted for free. Pit passes are $35.