Last October we brought you the story of Huset’s Speedway and the potential demise of dirt track racing in the Badlands area of South Dakota. That story can be found by clicking here.
In essence, the speedway, which was founded in 1954 by Til Huset, operated for a couple of seasons but shut down in 1956. In 1958, the track was reopened and ran by the Sioux Falls Stock Car Association for the next 31 years. In 1988, Clarence Rubin, with sons Greg and Steve, purchased the track and continued the racing tradition for the next 28 years.
Things took a dramatic turn in 2015 when Chuck Brennan took over ownership. Brennan changed the name to the Badlands Motor Speedway, started holding high dollar races and began making mutli-million dollar changes to the facility. This all sounded great initially, then Brennan hired the manager of a competing track. Having lost it’s manager/promoter, that track closed, leaving Badlands Motor Speedway as the only racetrack in area for locals.
Meanwhile, Brennan, CEO of Dollar Loan Center, continued to purchase radio stations and other community properties to enhance the track and surrounding businesses. When the state revoked the lending license for the Dollar Loan Center, things went south. The track ceased operations on May 2017 and was put up for sale. Now there was two closed tracks in the area and a venue that was for sale at an unbelievable asking price of $6 million.
Brennan threatened to demolish the facility and restore the land to a Federal land reserve for tax purposes at the end of December, 2018. Before the bulldozers were started and the buildings, bleachers, and racetrack were destroyed, a familiar name entered the picture. Racing promoter Steve Rubin agreed to purchase Badlands Motor Speedway from Brennan. The Rubin family ran the track for 28 years and resurfaced to save the track from extinction.
Rubin has requested 30 to 60 days to arrange the financing and investor group to keep the track open and work on plans to start racing operations this spring under the Huset’s Speedway name. The plan is for the season opener to take place during Memorial Day weekend. In addition to a full racing schedule, Rubin is planning to host concerts and special events at the property, which features nearly 80 acres and can host more than 20,000 people. The track remains safe for the time being.
For more information, visit badlandsmotorspeedway.com.