Penticton Speedway plans trial reopening this weekend

Return of the Speedway

The Penticton Speedway will welcome guests for the first time all season this Saturday, testing the waters with social distancing protocols in place. 

Normally, the track opens in April and provides weekend entertainment throughout the summer, but COVID-19 changed all that. Now, with Phase 3 of the province's reopening plan in place, the Speedway is getting back in the game. 

"We're going to do social distancing, we're going to be limiting certain things like one person in the washroom at a time, limited concessions, space the people out in the bleachers," owner Johnny Aantjes said. "We're going to do our best to manage within the rules ... People are excited, I think they're ready for this to happen." 

The bleachers will be clearly signed and delineated to ensure family groups stay within their zones, and concession will be hot and cold drinks, chips, cold treats only, no homemade hot food. 

For the first race of the season, they chose a classic Hornets, Streetstocks, Hit to Pass and Flying Destruction combo, kicking off Saturday evening. Tickets will be available at the gate, and a limited number of Speedway-branded face masks will be available as a door prize for first arrivals. 

On the ticket stubs, they will have a place for people to put their name and number so they can be contacted if necessary in the case of a COVID-19 outbreak, like restaurants do.

"And of course hand sanitizer is going to be available, and we'll hopefully have good weather, we've got plenty of room for lots of people to spread out," Aantjes said. 

The reopening is just on a trial basis right now, and the track will be taking it on a week-by-week basis.

"We were going to have a two-day event, we decided to go with one just to sort of ease into it, and if everything goes well we'll have another one in another couple of weeks," Aantjes explained. 

The races start 7 p.m. Saturday, July 4. Get the full event details on the Penticton Speedway Facebook page here


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