A new Spokane-based go-cart track development group plans to open an indoor facility here next month for racing.
Called Nascart Indoor Speedway, the racetrack will be located in a leased, 30,000-square-foot warehouse space at 1224 E. Front, near the busy Trent Avenue-Hamilton Street intersection.
The speedway is being developed by Spokane businessmen Joe Miller, Jon Kirk, and Gordon Kirk, who are operating the venture as a subsidiary of Raven Development Corp., of which Jon Kirk is president.
Almost all of the floor space will be dedicated to the racetrack, which will include 1,000 linear feet of track with several hairpin turns and two straightaways. The group has ordered 15 high-performance go-carts, Miller says.
Aside from the racing area, Nascart will include a 2,000-square-foot banquet room and small area for spectators.
Miller says the indoor go-cart track will cater to adults more than a typical go-cart track, which would be outdoors.
The outdoor (go-cart) market is directed more at family entertainment, Miller says. This concept is more about racing. Were offering racing in a controlled, safe environment.
The group has ordered carts from Biz Karts Ltd., a Great Britain-based manufacturing company that specializes in high-performance go-carts. In all, the group is investing $250,000 in the carts and equipment for the facility.
Jon Kirk says the carts could top out at speeds in excess of 35 mph on the courses longest straightaway, which will be about 240 feet. All drivers will be required to wear helmets, which will be furnished by Nascart, and either racing overalls or long sleeves are recommended.
There might be minimum height and age requirements, but no restrictions have been set yet, Kirk says.
The Nascart group hopes to open indoor go-cart facilities in other cities, and Kirk says it currently is eyeing Anchorage, Alaska, for a new track. He says the group would like to operate a total of four indoor tracks in four cities.
The group also is negotiating to design indoor tracks for another go-cart facility operator, who is looking to build tracks in Minneapolis and Cleveland.
While this is the first go-cart development for the group, Miller and Kirk have been involved with automobile racing for the past 20 years. Kirk drove on NASCARs northwest circuit for 10 years and volunteered to work in other drivers pit crews for the following 10 years. Miller has volunteered as a pit crew member for at least 20 years, he says.
Millers primary business is a mortgage company here, called JM Mortgage, which he owns. Gordon Kirk, Jons father, is a vice president at Max J. Kuney Co., a Spokane-based general contractor.
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