Thursday, May 1, 2008

The New Automotive Mecca?

Yesterday's news about Randy Moss announcing Moss Motorsports got me thinking.

At first I thought that the team would be based out of New England, but this is very unlikely and will probably be in the Mecca of NASCAR: Mooresville, NC. However, that thought inspired others leading me to assess the growth of motor sports and the interest in performance automobiles in New England over recent times.

Most recently (other than Moss' announcement) came the announcement of the Fenway Sports Group's (a marketing subsidiary of The Red Sox parent New England Sports Ventures) purchase of 50% of NASCAR's biggest team, Roush Racing (home of the Busch Series winner, Carl Edwards) in February, 2007. Pick up a copy of April's installment of Fast Company Magazine for more of FSG's ventures.


In 1995, brothers Mark and David Smith began in a small garage what would become the world's most successful manufacturer of component cars, Factory Five Racing. Every year FFR hosts an Open House which grows yearly and currently sees about 200 FFR faithful in attendance and the headquarters in Wareham, MA.

The year 1990 brought NASCAR (and several other racing sanctioning bodies) to New England in the form of New Hampshire International Speedway (Now New Hampshire Motor Speedway). Each of the two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races NHMS hosts each year sell out and have attendance that exceed the NFL's Superbowl. In addition to NASCAR, according to the NHMS website, "the track hosts several regional professional racing series, including the NASCAR Camping World Series East and the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour. Amateur series events are sanctioned by the Sports Car Club of America, Loudon RoadRace Series, Vintage Racer Group, U.S. Classic Racing Association, and the World Karting Association. Racing schools are conducted throughout the year by the Richard Petty Driving Experience and Penguin School."


As you can see, this is a wide range of racing levels, all supported by the same track, which until it conception, left New England racers (of which the numbers have grown significantly over the last 10-20 years) to travel mostly outside the New England area to get their "fix".

For drag racing fans, there's New England Dragway in Epping, NH which has been open since 1966.

Now add Local Motors to that mix and I begin to wonder, "Is New England the Mooresville of the Northeast, the Northeast Mecca of performance autos?"

Stay tuned as the growth continues!


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