Originally Published: July 15, 2016 5:50 a.m.
It’s been more than a year since Prescott Valley Speedway closed its doors because of the failure of Yavapai Downs (where they were located). Since March 2015, the track’s owners have been looking for a new home. They think they might have found it at Chino Valley’s Old Home Manor.
But the town is just beginning to consider the possibility and there is a lot that could keep it from happening, including the fact that part of Yavapai College’s lease grants them veto authority over any motorsports facility on Old Home Manor.
“They want to do dirt track stuff, oval track is what it sounded like, and possibly, eventually blossoming out to drag racing or whatever,” Chino Valley Mayor Chris Marley said. “But for right now, it’s just dirt track stuff.”
John Brinkley, who with his father David Brinkley is trying to bring a motorsports track to Chino Valley, said they had no comment at this time because discussions are still preliminary.
Marley brought up the possibility with his Ad Hoc Old Home Manor Recreation Committee last week. The committee, which is tasked with looking at a number of different recreation uses for Old Home Manor, seemed in favor of a motorsports facility there, and spent most of the meeting discussing where to place it.
Yavapai College’s Agribusiness & Science Technology Center is located at Old Home Manor, so that is why they are involved. The current plan if racing comes to Chino Valley, is for races to take place on Saturday nights.
John Brinkley said that Prescott Valley Speedway averaged 600 to 1,500 fans for its racing events since the track first opened in 2004.
The location the committee seemed to prefer was along the northern border of Old Home Manor, behind the planned industrial park. Marley said that the Brinkleys were looking for about 25 acres, but may want to expand in the future. The plot of land is next to YC’s campus.
Marley said the track would have a decibel limit that cars could produce and that they would take steps to try and minimize the volume.
“Everyone that comes out here, needs parking,” said Councilmember Lon Turner, who is a member of the committee. “Not everyone’s going to be doing things at the same time. So we need to figure out, how we can consolidate … so that they
can use the same parking lot.”
Turner suggested it would make sense for the equestrian facility and the race track plan ahead so that they could share parking spaces and make it convenient for visitors.
The committee took no action. Marley said he first needed to meet with Yavapai College officials to make sure they would agree to a track at Old Home Manor, and if so, find out their concerns so they could be addressed.