Archive for Thursday, May 9, 2002

Kansas Speedway a hit with nation’s racing fans

May 9, 2002

Kansas Speedway tickets, all 78,000 of them, sold out even quicker this year than last.

Sammie Lukaskevitz, public relations coordinator, said last year at this time, the Speedway still had tickets available for September's Winston Cup series.

"We sold out very early this year," Lukaskevitz said. "We didn't go on sale to the general public. We had about 90 percent renewal rate and the remaining of those we sold to people on our waiting list.

The five-race package started at $175, she said.

There are, however tickets remaining for two races during the June 1 race weekend the ARCA REMAX Series BPU 200 and the NASCAR Winston West Series Kansas 150. Tickets sell for $20 each.

And, race fans can still purchase tickets for qualifying races for the July 5 truck races and the Sept. 26 Busch and Winston Cup series. Tickets start at $10.

This year's events included the April Kansas Speedway-Oklahoma Joe's Barbecue Cook-off presented by Price Chopper. Sanctioned by the Kansas City Barbecue Society, participants competed for $40,000 in cash prices.

"It's one of the bigger barbecues in the country," Lukaskevitz said.

One area group that reported success at fund-raising efforts during the Speedway's inaugural year plans to do it again, said Kerry Putthoff.

"They requested we come back," Putthoff said. "So we're scheduled to be back. I told everybody in the parish we stuck our necks out again."

Parishioners of Sacred Heart Catholic Church netted $25,000 from operating a food stand during 2001 race weekends.

Putthoff, who with his wife, Treasa, organized the operation, said he had no idea how many hot dogs or cups of pop were sold. But he said, the booth sold $121,000 worth of food during the September weekend of the Busch Winston Cup series.

"The other weekends were obviously smaller than that," Putthoff said. "But they were still quite massive events."

Surprisingly, finding the manpower and providing the food was the easy part of running the booth.

The hard part was battling the heat.

"We actually suggested that people who got too hot should stand in the cooler for a while," he said. "It worked."

And, because of the heat, the top sellers were drinks from water to beer.

Putthoff is hoping the booth again raises big dollars for the church, which is planning a building project in Tonganoxie.

"I'm guarded," he said. "It would be great. I know the first year of a new situation like that is usually a banner year, but then again we're getting a lot of good reviews from people who like the track so it's a guess as to what will happen."

Commenting has been disabled for this item.