April 1, 2020
To Our Racers, Friends, and Fans,
We hope everyone is doing well and staying healthy during this time of government-mandated shutdowns. We know it is extremely frustrating to have a beautiful day when you could be racing and you are prohibited from doing so. All of us at the track feel your pain and are equally frustrated.
Since this closure began, we have been working closely with our sanctioning bodies – and also with local, regional and state officials – to develop operating alternatives. We suspect that when things do re-open there will be restrictions and policies in place. We will be leaders in this space by implementing a system that has been developed by responsible planning. There are many of the restrictions and limitations currently in place – some we understand, and some we don’t. Both WWTR Owner & CEO Curtis Francois and I have been working seven days a week examining every option available. We are actively engaged with county government, local law enforcement, state legislators and the largest motorsports lobbying group in the nation to make sure they are well aware of the impact to not only our track, but also to the entire industry.
Our first priority is re-opening the track as soon as possible for participant-driven events. We have submitted social distance compliant plans specifically as they apply to our facility to key decision makers. We also have submitted these plans to the sanctioning bodies and track rental partners so that we can work together within the industry – so that everyone can have a detailed plan in place for safe operating procedures. You will NOT see us publicly calling out lawmakers or threatening to violate orders. Instead, we are working behind the scenes and are making significant progress for your benefit.
We believe that when we re-open there will be a variety of challenges as it comes to human interaction. For that reason, we are encouraging everyone to start preparing now for a more streamlined process of operations when we return to action.
- Please go to the app store and download the Pit Pay app. Follow the instructions and build your profile, scan your license, etc. In a few days we will be providing a copy of our release waiver which will streamline the entry process. At the current time, one of the primary steps that we anticipate having to implement is paying for your event registration in advance and not at the gate. The Pit Pay app now provides that option. We have been working with this app developer for more than a year and he has legal guidance from specialists in our industry. We had planned on adopting this system this year as a member-only program, but we now feel it will be necessary for all participants. (It is not available for spectator ticket purchases).
- As recently as yesterday, we were involved in conversations with the sanctioning bodies and insurance providers for an online tech card system that can be completed in advance. Many of the groups offered this program to professional category racers and, with the current pandemic, we have been lobbying for its use across all racing platforms and classes. We have made significant progress and you will be seeing announcements very soon. We will provide an online link on our website as soon as it is available.
- We encourage everyone to get an extended technical inspection (ETI) of your vehicle. Beginning May 1, we will begin to offer ETI inspection reservations. Racers will be able to bring their car to the track at a reserved time for an inspection process that will adhere to the same no-contact guidelines that you are seeing with other automotive service industries. On Monday, April 27, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., we will begin to accept reservations for this process. We will plan on hosting ETI dates on May 1, 2, 3 and again on May 8, 9, 10. Slots will be filled in the order that they are received. Reservations will be accepted at (618) 215-8888 ext. 115. You also may email Taryn for a reservation at Taryn.Bailey@wwtraceway.com. Please have a list of all your SFI-certified components and their expiration dates so that we may include them in the ETI process. We will offer an ETI option to both registered racers and street legal racing participants.
- When we do return to action there may be a different way of doing business. Our staff may be wearing masks and gloves and using hand sanitizer on a regular basis. We will look at nightly sanitizing options for participant contact areas. We will do whatever it takes to provide a safe place for you to race.
- The tower will be restricted-access only and limited to essential staff.
- Time slip workers may wear masks and gloves for the distribution of time slips.
- We may only utilize odd-numbered staging lanes – with even-numbered lanes designated as social distance zones to provide adequate access between vehicles.
- The process of payouts for events will not take place on-site or in the tower on the day of the event. We will be offering a direct-deposit option, as well as a mail option, that will take place immediately following the event. In order to accomplish this, you will need to have valid tax paperwork on file with our payout department. Direct deposit and W9 forms will be posted online beginning May 4.
- All of our restrooms are equipped with permanent hand sanitizing dispensers and are stocked throughout the facility. We are well-stocked and able to service participant-only events for the duration of the 2020 season. Restrooms will be sanitized each night.
- Concession stands will follow all guidelines in place for local food service businesses. We will be open with a limited menu of food items that may need to be consumed within your pit area and not in our concession pavilion.
- Staging lanes/front of tower: This is our main congregating area for crewmembers and their families. We will be implementing policies and procedures for this area with access limited to one to two crewmembers per car who will be limited on their time in the area. Our security staff, starting line crew and ambulance staff will closely monitor this area to prevent unauthorized gathering.
- In our plans we also will be developing pit area policies that will limit time spent before and after the completion of races. We will be working closely with the City of Madison for controlled pit sweeps by the Madison Police Department 30 minutes after the completion of racing.
- We know that everyone is anxiously awaiting the return to racing. However, everyone needs to have a solid personal protection plan in place as it relates directly to them. We encourage everyone to follow the Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines regarding how you conduct your daily lives so that life can quickly return to normal. Crewmembers may be asked to wear masks as they accompany a car to the staging lanes or to the starting line area. We suggest you make plans to acquire your personal protection equipment and bring it with you to the track.
- Please keep a close eye on wwtraceway.com and our social media handles of @wwtraceway for the latest updates. We are currently developing a new 2020 schedule as well as policies, prices and procedures that we plan on releasing very soon. We fully support the re-opening of America. We appreciate your continued support and look forward to seeing you again at the races.
WWTR Executive Vice President & General Manager