Kentucky Speedway officials gear up for NASCAR race


by WHAS11

Posted on June 11, 2012 at 6:30 PM

Updated Monday, Jun 11 at 6:30 PM

SPARTA, Ky. (WHAS11) -- After headaches and delays last year at Kentucky’s first Sprint Cup NASCAR race organizers are promising change. On Monday Kentucky Speedway showed off its improvements.

Governor Steve Beshear along with Speedway Motorsports CEO Bruton Smith toured the newly reworked grounds and cut the ribbon on the new tunnel. The tunnel is just one of many improvements made to streamline traffic flow ahead of the Quaker State 400.

"You will see a tremendous amount of parking that has been added. I think you will say it's better than any. It's awesome. Im very proud of it," said CEO of Speedway Motorsports Bruton Smith.

"We learned last year and we are going to be moving on in the next few years just how important  NASCAR is to the folks here in the United States and people around the world. We need to focus in on this weekend we will have every year for a number of years to come, " said Governor Steve Beshear.

Last year's inaugural race turned into a major traffic nightmare. Clogged roadways forced thousands to miss the big race. Problems the speedway owned up to and vowed to change.

In addition to a new tunnel and widening of ramps and roadways, parking was a big focus.

The Speedway purchased hundreds of additional acres to expand its parking. The Speedway says it can now parking 20 thousand additional vehicles.

It's a multi-million dollar project, one the CEO Bruton Smith expects to pay off.

"We made a lot of promises to all of you. And we are gonna prove to you today that we have fulfilled all these promises," said Smith.

The speedway also plans to communicate traffic delays and updates via facebook and twitter.