The asphalt track operated for over 45 years, closed last February; It’s now re-opening as a dirt track
In 1972, Lonesome Pine Raceway was born. Coeburn, Virginia welcomed the brand new 3/8-mile asphalt oval.
In the first year, the NASCAR Grand National East Series rolled into town. Bobby Isaac drove his 1970 Dodge to victory lane topping names like Wendell Scott, Richard Childress and Bobby Allison. Isaac pocketed $1,750 for the win.
The NASCAR Grand National series never returned. The NASCAR Southeast Series ran a single event in 2002. Of the national touring series that visited the speedway, the Pro Cup Series was the most frequent. The X-1R Series visited the track 10 times between 1999-2014.
Keith and Ervin Stiltner leased Lonesome Pine Speedway in 2007. They operated the track through 2017. In February of this year, they made the tough decision not to renew the lease citing poor crowd attendance.
“With the low fan counts and car counts and the struggling economy in Southwest Virginia we just feel it’s best decision at this time,” the statement read from February 2018.
Another track gone… Lonesome Pine Raceway joined nearby Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, VA and Newport Speedway in Newport, TN in near sudden death.
But, not quite. Seven months after closure, it’s currently being covered in clay and soon to be reignited as a dirt track by a former dirt racer.
“We always loved racing, the whole family did. We’ve been going to different dirt track every weekend. We felt like dirt was the answer to the problems here,” the new promoter Billy Hill stated to Heather Williams of WCYB.
They’re taking an awesome facility and coating it in clay. The complex is set to be reborn while lifting a page directly out of the playbook of Cody Sommer.
The new dirt track joins a list of asphalt tracks that are currently or have recently been converted to dirt track racing destinations. Other tracks recently converted or in the process of being converted: I-70 Speedway in Odessa, Missouri; Mansfield Motor Speedway in Mansfield, Ohio.
There will be a name change here as well. Clay Valley Speedway is set to re-open in 2019.