Marshfield Motor Speedway emphasizes safety and fan experience
With racing, camping, a bar, and plans for an expanded playground, the Marshfield Motor Speedway offers extensive options for fun
By Adam Hocking
MARSHFIELD — Those that have not visited Marshfield Motor Speedway might not believe what would unfold before them should they enter its gates. The Speedway houses a massive half-mile track with an expansive grandstand, a full indoor bar, and space for camping.
A variety of different race cars compete on the track, including Super Late Models, Super Stocks, Pure Stocks, X-Treme 4’s, and Bandits with races every Saturday.
General Manager Wayne Brevik has been running the speedway for the last six years, and he said despite a solid audience—an average of 300 to 500 people attend every Saturday—it has been a challenge to continually attract people to come out to the track. Brevik attributes some of that struggle to a generational shift. Children just are not as interested in racing as they once were.
“It’s just a whole different generation. Saturday mornings you don’t see kids getting out there working on their cars,” Brevik said. “You just don’t see that anymore.”
Brevik does not think increased concern about safety is responsible for the dip in interest.
“We haven’t had to call an ambulance here in years,” Brevik said. “We have the No. 1 tech guy probably in the United States that actually works here, and it’s Mike Lemke. He’s from the Green Bay area, and he comes over on Saturdays, and he’s very strict.”
Brevik also referenced the recent death of driver Kevin Ward involving racing star Tony Stewart. At a race in upstate N.Y., Ward left his car while on the track, and Stewart hit him. Brevik said that if a driver leaves their car before medical personnel reaches them, the driver loses points and payment for the night.
When people do come to the track they are often surprised by what the facility has to offer. A church group recently visited the speedway and told Brevik, “We’re impressed. We never knew this was in our own community.”
Unlike other regional tracks, the Marshfield Motor Speedway showcases two and three lane-wide racing. Others in the area feature single-file racing, according to Brevik.
“There’ll always be a good show, always be a lot of cars racing, and we start—we like to have our show done within three hours,” Brevik said.
Fans can also watch the race from a reserved parking area outside the track where they can bring their own food and drink.
In order to attract more families, Brevik is expanding the on-site playground for next year. The playground will be supervised so parents can attend the race while their children play in a safe environment. The speedway also has closed circuit television so that if patrons want, they can visit the bar without missing the race.
In addition, next year the speedway will begin hosting truck and tractor pulls as well as monster truck shows. Brevik hopes next year the speedway will go from almost all race events to half and half with equal parts racing and monster truck events.
During the speedway’s offseason Brevik referees Division II and III NCAA basketball, though he says racing is still his first passion. Brevik regularly puts in 100-hour weeks to run and maintain the speedway.
“I love it. It’s fun, but it’s a lot of work,” Brevik said.
Though the track is closing for the season after the Sept. 27 “Eve of Destruction” event, Brevik will keep the bar open during the winter. The speedway lies directly next to snowmobile paths, and the bar will offer food and drinks to those passing through.
The Eve of Destruction, Brevik said, will cater to an entirely new demographic than the speedway’s usual races.
“That’s a whole different breed of people,” Brevik said. The events include daredevil competitions, a demolition derby, and a special event where trailers are raced around the track in reverse.
Costs may vary for special events, but typically entry to the Speedway costs $12 for people age 15 and older, $8 for ages 9-14, and children age 8 or younger are admitted for free. Special family packages are also available.
For more information on Marshfield Motor Speedway, visit http://www.marshfieldspeedway.com/. The speedway is located at 10853 County Road H in Marshfield.
(Photos from the speedway available here)