Southside Speedway storm damage

By Yvette Yeon - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - Thursday's storms left an ugly mess at Southside Speedway forcing it to turn away race fans tonight.

Co-owner Sue Clements locked up the main office and joined her drivers in a huddle in the middle of the track. Several of the drivers were out practicing right before the worst of the storm hit them.

"We literally got stranded, 3 other drivers were over on the tracks," said Clements.

"From where we were standing, we could see the poles behind us here really moving in the wind and all of a sudden this pole just started…went right on over and all the lines came on to the bleachers, and it was really scary to be honest," said driver Greg Fernandez.

This is what the damage looks like the morning after; power lines draping low, poles stuck in fences, billboards scattered on the ground, and more. Sue and the other owners are waiting for the insurance agent to take a look, the landscape company to come up with an estimate, and figure out how much all this is going to cost.

"It's a loss. I can't give you a figure right off the top of my head but we're talking about every bit of $30,000 - $35,000, and then I don't know the cost to put all this back together," said Clements.

On a really good Friday night up to 4,000 people come to the track. It's been a slow these days with the heat, but these folks aren't discouraged.

The family at the Southside Speedway says they're going to take it day by day and make the repairs as soon as possible so the fans can return and enjoy the races.

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