July 4th race postponed | Anterior lake sports

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Elko Speedway was to open its season with great fireworks.

But the July 4 event, “Racing Against Racism”, was postponed to July 2 due to “crowd capacity restrictions”.

The New Market track has a capacity of 6,000 seats and is an outdoor location. However, Gov. Tim Walz’s most recent executive order capped crowds for outdoor entertainment at 250. These are the same limitations placed on some indoor gatherings like churches and restaurants.

Elko typically opens its season in May, but it has been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“It’s very disappointing to deal with inconsistent government restrictions,” Elko Speedway owner Tom Ryan said in a press release. “We always put the safety of our fans and our drivers first, and there is no doubt that we can safely open at 50% of our capacity.”

Ryan said in the statement he was in regular communication with Walz, Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development commissioner Steve Grove and Sen. Matt Little (DFL-Lakeville), citing “there were indications that outdoor entertainment venues could see a change in crowd limits “before July 4th.

“Matt and Steve were particularly helpful and responsive,” Ryan said. “There is something wrong when the state health commissioner recognizes that the coronavirus spreads more easily indoors, but the governor’s decree does not reflect this as it applies to outdoor sites .

“There is no consistency,” added Ryan. “As a Minnesota business owner, it’s especially hard to understand how Wisconsin race tracks were allowed to open for weeks without a crowd size limit and reported no issues, but we cannot exceed 250 fans. “

The “Race Against Racism” should be rescheduled. The July 4th opening was going to be an Eve of Destruction event, which included bus races, monster trucks, spectator trails, fireworks and more. Four racing divisions were also on the agenda.

On the Elko site, elkospeedway.com, there are several interviews on race, sports and society including those of former Twins chairman / CEO Dave St. Peter, WCCO personality Sheletta Brundiddge, NASCAR vice president of diversion and of inclusion Brandon Thompson and former Vice President Walter Mondale.

“We are very committed to bringing a better understanding of the issues facing our society today,” said Ryan. “We look forward to moving forward with the Race Against Racism event with the largest safe crowd possible when we open.”


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