4/20/2008 - It's been a long time
coming but the inevitable is upon us. Heavy equipment has moved in recently to
begin preparing the site for it's next life as a residential development. While
area drag racing fans were taking in the sights, sounds and smells of the Super
Chevy Show at Memphis Motorsports Park today, I paid a visit to the serene
remnants of Lakeland Raceway.
Funny thing, if it wasn't for the fact
that the crosswalk structure has been partially dismantled, the work that's been
done thus far could be misconstrued as a track resurrection. The right side pits
have been cleared making the track retaining wall visible again from Monroe Road for the
first time in many years. The dozers have also uncovered the concrete foundation
of the concession stand near the start line that once fed the hungry fans as well as the area where
the DX race gas pumps once fed the hungry four-wheeled beasts.
After clearing the forest that grew
over the last 30 years, there's the hill that once hosted a red grandstand, a
concession stand and
some spectator parking.
Looks like they brought the crosswalk
structure down by breaking it in the middle and letting gravity do the rest.
The old TCI Racing Transmissions &
Converters logo survived up until just a few years ago when some idiot kids ran
amuck with spray paint. Now it lies in a jumble of broken concrete and twisted
"Word is, the two-lane quarter-mile run will be repaved.
'Now that main drag strip is going to be the main street for a bunch of
houses,' said Lakeland Mayor Scott Carmichael. He expects the new driving speed
will be considerably lower than those clocked by the old dragsters." Commercial