TISDALE — While there won’t be a night race this year at the Tisdale Speedway due to Covid-19, there will be a race weekend celebrating 20 years on the track.
“We decided to have a two day event just to give everybody the opportunity to come out and see some races, because we’re limited on our spectators this year,” said Casey Randall, president of the North East Stock Car Driver Association.
Under Covid-19 guidelines, the track can only hold 150 spectators— with social distancing.
“We had a couple dates in June we unfortunately had to cancel, and the province opened up some restrictions in July— so we managed to get one race in July and then we decided to do our one at the end of August.”
In 1999, the track was built by Silvertown Contracting and by 2000 it had its first season in operation as the Silvertown Speedway. From there spectators could watch races involving the Tisdale Stock Car Club.
“A few years later the drivers formed an association and took over running the track, and we’ve been racing ever since.”
Randall attributes the track’s success today, with community interest in the sport.
“People like to see it, people like to race, and the people that like it are really dedicated. A lot of people just volunteer their time to make things happen. That’s why it’s been around for 20 years,” he said.
“It’s one more piece of the community that gives people something to do and something to look forward to. I think it’s important to have stuff like that in the community.”
This year, the association’s goal was to have night races, but with a limited amount of spectators they felt it wouldn’t be able to recoup the cost.
“We have to get light towers and get them setup, and then we got to put fuel in them, and it’s a bit of an extra expense,” Randall said. “We would really like to put on night races because they’re really fun, and the fans seem to enjoy them.”
The race weekend will take place on Aug. 29 and 30. The first day’s races start at 5 p.m., with the second day’s races starting at 2 p.m.
“Hopefully everything gets back to normal next year and we can have full grandstands and more drivers come from out of town and stuff like that. We haven’t had many drivers come from other tracks this year.”