Economy taking its toll on the big NASCAR weekend - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Economy taking its toll on the big NASCAR weekend

By Gene Petriello - bio | email

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - It may be early, but so far things were looking pretty empty at Richmond International Raceway around noon today. Only a few people scattered about here and there. Meanwhile, the gate attendants talking among themselves.

In the small crowd is Jeffrey Myers, at the track for what he said is about the seventh year in a row. For the first time, the economy is putting a damper on this trip.

"A whole lot less, a whole lot less. I'm unemployed now and it's hitting us really hard at home," Myers said.

Usually he'd turn over hundreds of dollars to the merchandise trailers. "None of that is going to happen. Pretty much race tailgating and that's pretty much about it," adds Myers.

A common story these days, even at the track known as the one where sell outs are the norm. Tickets are still available here for both Friday and Saturday night races. As for a sell-out, forget about it, because race officials are not expecting it.

It's not expected.

"People are just holding onto their money the way things are right now," says Richie Denzler with the Raceway public relations office. 

One person who isn't planning on holding on their money is Mark Venedam, in Richmond this weekend all the way from Canada.

"I haven't been affected too much by the economy," says Venedam. "I've been lucky with the job. So far so good."

The workers are hoping more people like Mark show up this weekend. As for inside the gates, race officials are hoping a lot of the empty seats we saw on Friday morning are filled up by those last minute buyers.

"We've made up a huge amount of ground the last few weeks," adds Denzler. 

Yet there's no doubt, a lot of people will be cutting corners this year on the spending at this short track.

(c) 2009. WWBT, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

  • SportsMore>>

  • UVA's Hall drafted by Oklahoma City Thunder

    UVA's Hall drafted by Oklahoma City Thunder

    Friday, June 22 2018 12:22 AM EDT2018-06-22 04:22:32 GMT

    Virginia guard Devon Hall was selected in the second round of Thursday's NBA Draft by the Oklahoma City Thunder (53rd overall). He becomes the fifth UVA player since 2012 to hear his named called on draft night. 

    More >>

    Virginia guard Devon Hall was selected in the second round of Thursday's NBA Draft by the Oklahoma City Thunder (53rd overall). He becomes the fifth UVA player since 2012 to hear his named called on draft night. 

    More >>
  • New Flying Squirrel Menez brings baseball legacy to Richmond

    New Flying Squirrel Menez brings baseball legacy to Richmond

    Baseball success runs in Conner Menez's family. His grandfather, Bill Plummer, was a member of the 1970's Big Red Machine, backing up hall of famer Johnny Bench behind the plate. Menez will make his first home start for the Flying Squirrels on Friday, but burst onto the scene in his AA debut, tossing six shutout innings and picking up a win at Harrisburg this past Saturday.

    More >>

    Baseball success runs in Conner Menez's family. His grandfather, Bill Plummer, was a member of the 1970's Big Red Machine, backing up hall of famer Johnny Bench behind the plate. Menez will make his first home start for the Flying Squirrels on Friday, but burst onto the scene in his AA debut, tossing six shutout innings and picking up a win at Harrisburg this past Saturday.

    More >>
  • Derby brings offensive lineman camp back to Richmond

    Derby brings offensive lineman camp back to Richmond

    For the sixth year, Brian Derby has brought his Derby Football Offensive Lineman Camp back to Richmond. Derby has been holding his camps for 22 years all across the country, and came to Virginia at the request of his former teammates, Richmond attorney Geoff McDonald.

    More >>

    For the sixth year, Brian Derby has brought his Derby Football Offensive Lineman Camp back to Richmond. Derby has been holding his camps for 22 years all across the country, and came to Virginia at the request of his former teammates, Richmond attorney Geoff McDonald.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly