I never believed that a local community investing millions in a sport based almost completely on cars making left turns was a wise financial decision.
Further, it seems The Great Recession and finicky temperament of discount audiences makes the economic consequences of the Unified Government putting so much faith (and taxpayer funds) in NASCAR seem foolhardy.
Like it or not, NASCAR is losing market share and there’s no guarantee it will ever come back. Of course, this bad news for a struggling sporting event that typically coincides with increased dependence on suckers from The Greater Kansas City Area. Not so coincidentally, the announcement of an added race at the Speedway was played up like a victory in the mainstream media but really only represents a desperate cry for help for its fans who are going broke as well.
First, let’s note that the precipitous drop in NASCAR attendance is not an opinion but a fact that has been politely ignored by local mainstream media. I’m guessing nobody wants to offend the many businesses and politicos who’ve staked their fortunes on the KCK development. But make no mistake, NASCAR is on the downswing. And I wouldn’t be so quick to simply cast all the blame on the economy. There are a great number of local concerts, events and even other sports teams who are still managing to hold onto fans despite the economic downturn.
What makes more sense is that NASCAR’s predominantly white, low income fan base that’s minus a few teeth might be exceptionally hard hit by this current downturn. They might even evoke a bit of sympathy from me for these “sons of the soil” who really aren’t that bad if the reactionary racism in their culture could be overcome.
Optimists always hope the economy will rebound and make everything right, but this downturn for NASCAR might not shift gears quite that easily. Sadly, a great deal of KCK taxpayer money depends on the hope that low income, “down home” people in Kansas City and their kind won’t find a better entertainment option than smelling gas fumes, watching traffic and hoping for a crash.