Drivers in limbo with future of Langley Speedway uncertain

Posted at 10:18 PM, Feb 10, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-10 22:18:31-05

HAMPTON, Va. - For the first time in 65 years, the future of racing at Langley Speedway is uncertain.

Drivers tell NewsChannel 3 that the business is halted because of negotiations between the speedway's owner and the landowner.

With less than two months away to racing season, drivers are left in limbo.

"The nearest racetrack we have is Dominion Raceway, all the way up near King's Dominion," says Chris Lemonds. His father, Dale, died during a race back in 2004, and his family owned the raceway for several years. "It's going to be really different if we have to go all the way up there."

Drivers say there are also a lot of major sponsors that are left in limbo as well.

"All of my sponsors are local, they're local to this community," says Thomas Marks, a driver at Langley for three years and grew up working on cars at the speedway. "It's really tough for them to make a commitment, say if I have to race at Dominion or anywhere else because they're not going to have a market out there."

However, the waiting game, according to drivers, has had one upside -- community support.

A Facebook group, "Support Langley Speedway," now has more than 4,000 members rallying around the speedway's staff and owner. The group is also distributing signs in support.

"The community has come together, it's very overwhelming to be able to see people throughout the years going all the way back to when it was a dirt track, posting pictures and having families and people getting married out there," says Lemonds.

Drivers are hoping that the support leads to a positive outcome in the next few weeks.

"I'm very optimistic," says Marks. "I think everybody's working their butts off to give us a good place to race on Saturday night."

NewsChannel 3 reached out to Langley Speedway's owner for a comment, but we are still waiting to hear back.