Cottage Grove Speedway Shut Down

COTTAGE GROVE, Ore. — The city of Cottage Grove has shut down the Cottage Grove Speedway.

City leaders say the race track violated several city codes and didn’t meet conditions set back in April.

Howard Schesser, Cottage Grove community development director, said the city had given the speedway until May to submit information that the city needed.

The information Cottage Grove requested from the race track included:

-Building permit applications: The city now has them but needs additional information;

-An engineer’s drawing of a water line extension and sewer line extension;

-Proof that the speedway applied to the Department of State Lands and the Corps of Engineers for approval to work in the Coast Fork of the Willamette River, to replace and enlarge a culvert for a storm system;

-Drawings of the design and location of a secondary access road for emergency response;

-Quarterly attendance records;

-Documents to allow conservation and storm drainage easements.

The track will be closed until the city’s requirements are met.

The season usually wraps up in October.

KEZI 9 News reached out to the track’s owner, Bob Farwell, but he didn’t return our calls.


No ping yet

  1. Barb N. says:

    Haha! Doesn’t surprise me. My personal opinion is that the track has gone to crap since the Lynch’s sold it.

    1. sam says:

      Its just a sloppy old run down redneck pit that nobody wanted to bother updating thats why it got sold. Looks like it would make a better mud baug , if just it wasnt so close to the river.

  2. Barb N. says:

    Excuse me Leach’s

  3. Denise says:

    I am sad. This is an event my entire family enjoys. My 15 yr old daughter REALLY wants to race there. I hope this is remedied, soon.

  4. Carol B. says:

    Regarding Cottage Grove Speedway: Why have you not fixed and followed the rules that the City of Cottage Grove told you too do. Did you think that they were just saying it? NO, when a City government says for you to fix something or you will be shut down… THEY MEAN IT! THEY ARE NOT PLAYING GAMES AND DON’T HAVE TIME TO MESS WITH YOU! You will ruin the Speedway and no one will ever want to race there. What are you trying to do??? Is that what you want??? If you don’t want to run it then PLEASE LET SOMEONE ELSE RUN IT!!! Cottage Grove Speedway has had a GREAT reputation for many many years. My brother was racing there over 40 years ago, Rest in Peace Now…. POSSIBLY THE TRACK TOO! Call the paper back and give them a statement at why it hasn’t been done. You are NOT stupid so quit acting that way! There are latemodels, and all classes of cars that that is the only track they actually can depend on for a schedule for them to race. The Speedway does bring in extra money into the City!!! Last weekend we raced there and YES the track was horrible and has been ever sinse we started coming back there! You need someone to show you HOW TO PREP A TRACK WHERE YOU DON’T HAVE TO TAKE AN HOUR BREAK EVERY LITTLE BIG TO FIX! THAT IS AWFUL AND BORING! We ALL know there are other people to take over the track or let the Leaches take it back! At least Bob Leach knows how to prep a GREAT track!!! GET WITH IT!!!!!! We don’t want to loose OUR TRACK BECAUSE OF SOMETHING YOU WON’T DO!

    1. Patrick Desbiens says:

      The day bob fartwell angered track manager Brian Crockett last year enough to resign. Was the final nail that sealed this particular coffin. This has been coming for awhile now. Bob just needs to pack it in and let mr schram take the reigns.

      1. I-5 Corridor Racing Fan says:

        If the Schrams take control of this track, then they will have

        1. Hoquiam, Wa
        2. Mt. Hood, Or
        3. Lebanon, Or
        4. Cottage Grove, Or

        I for one think that is a major set back for racing for the Racers and the Fans. Since they have taken control of tracks they now control, it has become more expensive for everyone. The fans and racers.

        I think you should look closer and know what your bringing into Cottage Grove, Or. before you blindly support a major take-over of the “I-5 Corridor Racing”.

        Been there done that, not a supporter of the Schrams.

        1. Steve says:

          I can’t speak for any other Schram track, but Willamette underwent a MAJOR upgrade before the season, and did NOT raise general adm prices. Still $14 as it was last year, or at least that’s what I paid for the one race I’ve been able to go to, the 360s on 4 July. Not saying I necessarily LIKE all the changes, but they spent a ton of money without a ticket increase.

  5. Shelly Taylor says:

    Unfortunately this has been coming for a very long time. The track has been flagrantly violating the rules with no effort to get it together. It is a big loss for the people and families who enjoy the races and especially those who have for generations. I agree with the above comments; the owners really thumbed their noses at the City leaving them no real alternative but to shut them down. They knew about the numerous violations and had ample time to deal with them yet did nothing. None of this came as a surprise really, but it is still very sad.

  6. T. says:

    Regarding the old speedway. The Leaches ran it in the ground and found a sucker to buy it as with all their business dealings.ie Yamaha. Poor Bob got sucked into buying something that the Leaches got around doing. The city has set rules that would break the bank. The speedway has been run down as long as i know. The rules for change are in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. With the poor attendance and economy as well as the condition of the track, it is due to fail. If everyone was concerned about the track they would support it by going to the races. True Bob Leach knew about track prep and the other Leach knew how to take the money and run.

  7. PC says:

    The Leaches had not ran the place into the ground, it was at its best. Other wise only a fool would have purchased it for over 2 mil. As for the poor attendance, what do you get when you cut the program in half ( running 2 out of 4 classes- 360 sprints, limited sprints,latemodels, modifieds). You lose half your fan base . If the cars are not there, the fans are not there. Put on top of that a new owner that harasses the fans and you have a major problem. In my opinion Bob is not good with people . From what i’ve seen he thinks all people are trying to steal from him. Bob ran off his help, ran of racers and fans by not doing whats right. This continues today by him not doing whats right and not making the improvements to the race track.

  8. LJ. says:

    You guys talk about the economy being a factor then why is Willamette Speedway always packed with fans and cars? Because they did repairs to the track to make it a good place for everyone including families. The last time I was at Cottage Grove Speedway I had my son with me and they were letting people smoke in the stands which is a fire violation and when I said something to the security guard he pointed to the family section in bleachers that looked as if we sat on em they would fall apart. Not to mention they were so far away from everything. To me that is not how you treat a paying participant, let alone someone with a child who is coming to enjoy the races. It seems as though the track didn’t like having people who don’t normally race there race as I have seen people come from out of town and get treated differently then the “regulars.” I see you guys talk about how great Cottage Grove was, but honestly I don’t see that being the case, I never have seen that. The people who work there are rude, inconsiderate and show no appreciation for the fans that come there. Willamette did all these changes and look at their attendance since the season started, the seats and parking lot are packed with cars and fans. They treat the people who attend and race with great respect and take things into consideration, as well have designated smoking areas. Also the track is always prepped and ready to go when racing is. The flagger is SOO much better then the one at Grove. I was at a race in Grove and oil was on the track from a blown motor the flagger did nothing and it caused another wreck which resulting in wrecking a guys car beyond being fixed. I am so glad Grove is closed they need to pull their heads out and realize what they need to do it make it better and should take fans suggestions into consideration. Now everyone come to Willamette this weekend and see how a race track is ran!

    1. I-5 Corridor Racing Fan says:


      If the Schrams take control of this track, then they will have

      1. Hoquiam, Wa
      2. Mt. Hood, Or
      3. Lebanon, Or
      4. Cottage Grove, Or

      I for one think that is a major set back for racing for the Racers and the Fans. Since they have taken control of tracks they now control, it has become more expensive for everyone. The fans and racers.

      I think you should look closer and know what your bringing into Cottage Grove, Or. before you blindly support a major take-over of the “I-5 Corridor Racing”.

      Been there done that, not a supporter of the Schrams.

      1. LJ says:

        FYI I-5 Corridor Racing Fan, have you been to any of the track to know that the prices have went up? And are you sure those are the only tracks that the Schrams own? you might wanna do you research before you go and open your mouth about it they actually own more tracks then that. And the prices have not been raised for the racers or the fans. They made improvements to Willamette without increasing the prices for the fans or the racers. Make sure you gather all your information before you go and put it on blast.

        Thank you :-)

  9. Cynthia says:

    its a shame about the track, but if they would keep it up to code and do what they are required to do to keep it that way this wouldn’t be an issue.. cottage grove officials are not going to just shut it down because they feel like it. its a big part of this town. I agree the new owners have not made an effort with the speedway, infact they have run it into the ground, i’m not the only one who thinks that way. i hope for the town that it is reopened.. it just wont be cottage grove in summer without the track

  10. Todd says:

    I’m happy its closed, goodbye dust, goodbye loud noisy pollution and burning tire smell.

    1. I-5 Corridor Racing Fan says:

      @Todd…. You, I guess, probably moved into the area after the track was put in. Either your an idiot, a greenie, tree hugger or just plain a trouble maker.

      Maybe you should offer to take a ride on the next rocket to Mars, it is quiet there and everything might meet your approval. No cars… That is plural.. There is ONE FULLSIZE CAR….

    2. racer says:

      the track has only been shut down till the improvements are made , sorry to inform you
      that the closure is not permanent

    3. Cynthia says:

      so you are one of those that moved here and started trouble then i take it todd.. maybe you’re from cali.. they seem to hate the track. its not going anywhere they will fix it up and it will be open again.. probably time to move on :)

  11. Scott says:

    That track was way to loud for this area. It ruined many peaceful BBQ’s during the summer. I stopped having them. I live quite a distance from the track but it was so loud, I could shut all my doors and windows and still hear it. I had to turn up my TV to try and drown it out. I like racing and have many friends who do, but good riddance to this particular track and from what I have heard about it, should have been done long ago.

    1. Tony B says:

      how long have you lived in Cottage grove? the speedway has been a traditon since 1956
      I have been going to watch or race since 1972( I was born in cottage grove in 1966)
      there is plenty of other towns where a speedway is not present. I would suggest you relocate
      if public recreation is such a nuscance to you. I live in eugene near the beltline the trafiic noise is always very loud, or the train yard maybe i should see if they would close them down
      because the noise bothers me,ableit they are a everyday occurance rather has 5-6 hrs one day aweek during the summer season

      1. Cynthia says:

        well feel free to move if you hate it so much, its not going anywhere.

  12. Ted Evans says:

    Racing is an ingrained part of the culture here in Cottage Grove. This community NEEDS this speedway. The Leaches made many improvements at the track, and it was in good condition. They kept it scheduled, had many special events, and they made improvements that kept the World of Outlaws and the Northwest Sprint Tour coming back.

    The new owner has cut the schedule, cut the classes that people want to see, and added classes that nobody really cares about. Then, to top it off, didn’t make the necessary improvements after the city tried to work with them.

    And to those who complain about the noise – that is the sound of people having fun for a few hours, one day a week, during the summer. I am sure there are things you do that bother your neighbors, but they put up with it for the sake of community. Maybe you should learn to do the same.

  13. Linda says:

    I am a promoter myself and until you have spent a day in a promoters shoes you do not know what you are talking about. It’s easy for you to have all this opinions without any real knowledge behind it but you can kill a persons business with all this nonsense. Good luck to you cg fans I hope you get your track back

  14. Gene Ghetti says:

    The last time I attend the Grove a security guard removed an entire family that was seated next to me. I told a track official about the security guard’s unprofessional (actually childish) behavior and that the family next to me was not bothering anyone. The track official said “the family is sharing beer with minors”. (I did not see any of that!) He went on to say “We can lose our liquor license over an incident like this”. I guess the track is more interested in selling beer at hyper inflated profits (and paying staff to act like jerks), than putting on a race program.

    1. LJ says:

      Gene, I do agree with you the security guards there are horrible!! I am not sorry one bit that they lost their jobs because of the closure, Its karma in a way. They don’t treat fans worth a crap and in the end I could see them losing money for the track then benefiting it. If they would monitor their beer sales they wouldn’t have to have so many security guards in the first place. limit the amount of beer per person and it prevents a lot of people from getting mouthy and thinking they are bullet proof.

  15. Jason sandquist says:

    Cottage grove has been my home since 1986 and it seems all the fun things to do have have been shut busy bodies down at our corrupt city hall! I challenge anyone to do public disclosure on the city of cottage grove and the over budgeted police station and find out what is really going on! The city owns the industrial park and the golf coarse? Can a town be in business for it’s self?????? Does the city of cottage grove have interest in the race track property??????
    No races, no train, no theater, no pool???? BUT we have 15 police officers and 5 tahoe police cruisers to intimidate this sleepy town! Is this fraud????????????? How much are your home taxes?? Where is our taxes going???????

    Fight the local fraud and stand up and say something! Sincerely Jason Sandquist

  16. hightide6096 says:

    Good,I am so glad that they decided close the speed way down. I can remember years ago in Eugene,They had a speed way and you can literately hear the sound of there engines from miles away.There was Noise pollution for about 15 miles radios until they finely tore the speedway down and made a walmart store. I think the speedways are becoming the thing of the past!

  17. speedway open says:

    The Groves answering machine says the track will be reopened under new management 9-15-2012 event information will be posted 541-942-7561

  18. cliquez says:

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