Besides its pair of NASCAR races which annually see about 200,000 people at the racetrack – 60 percent of whom are from outside the state of Michigan – MIS officials have opened its property up to new business opportunities.
Michigan International Speedway has welcomed businesses from not just the state of the Michigan, but globally. The track can hold multiple functions at the same time on its 1,400 acres.
In fact, only 20 dates remain available to use the track for all of 2013 – and a majority of those are weekdays. On most days the track is used by multiple organizations for a variety of functions.
"We have pledged to do our part to bring tourism and business to this area – all year long, not just summertime," speedway President Roger Curtis said. "It's great to see so many people from our community benefitting from moving our business beyond the traditional NASCAR events. And it's part of our plan to showcase this racetrack to groups from all ages and all walks of life."
The opportunity is so great, a full-time Business Development Department focuses on new opportunities.
RACING AND SUMMERTIME THRILLS
The core business of the speedway remains racing and is the main driver of its annual $340 million economic impact on Southeast Michigan. The track has a jammed-packed schedule of exciting action in 2013. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will make two stops in the Irish Hills this summer as the best drivers test the high-banked oval.
NASCAR racing returns to the Irish Hills the June 14-16 weekend as the top Sprint Cup drivers celebrate Father's Day at MIS for the Quicken Loans 400.
But cars will not be the only thing racing at the track in June. Another kind of athlete will be able to test their skill in a 10-13.5-mile hardcore obstacle course in the Tough Mudder on June 29-30.
The Faster Horses Festival rides into town on July 19-21 for a country concert on two stages featuring some of the top acts in music. Make a Wish hosts its annual Wish-A-Mile Bike Tour on July 25-28. It is a 300-mile ride through the state of Michigan and ends at MIS. A special 50-mile ride through the sprawling Irish Hills is July 28.
The second NASCAR weekend is August 16-18 and highlighted by the Pure Michigan 400. The CHUMP Car Series tests the skills of its drivers at MIS just one week later on August 23-25. For the second consecutive year the Michigan Karting Club invites its drivers to MIS for its championships on September 13-15.
And don't forget the Michigan Wine and Beer Fest presented by Experience Jackson on Saturday, May 18.
The month of May concludes with a new event in 2013 with two days of racing from the Sports Car Club of America.
MIS and Brooklyn Ford are teaming up to support the Drive 4 UR Community Program sponsored by Ford Motor Company as guests will have an opportunity to test drive a Ford vehicle at MIS on July 27.
TESTING AND R&D
The 1,400 acres at Michigan International Speedway offers a range of amenities to meet all the needs of businesses and organizations. The newly remodeled Champions Club presented by CP Federal Credit Union offers a unique setting overlooking the frontstretch. Businesses can also use any of the Pit Road suites for meetings or networking functions.
In addition, NASCAR has added a testing opportunity to teams in 2013 as they continue to work on the Gen-6 car. With the track hosting a pair of races, you can be sure that teams will conduct tests to gain an advantage.
Michigan International Speedway has become a key player in research and development for the auto manufacturers in recent years. The track serves as a neutral-test ground for the manufacturers to work together as the technology continues to be developed. Testing is scheduled for numerous days throughout the facility and the manufacturers continue to reserve additional dates.
The track has multiple intersections, a road course that goes through remote areas to offer real life situations in a secure environment and a recently repaved road course in the infield. In addition, the large skid pad on the back stretch offers an opportunity to test how cars talk to each during quick braking, scalability and other evasive maneuvers.
In addition, public safety organizations routinely use the facility for safe driving, maneuverability and training courses.
JUST FOR KIDS
The month of May will see numerous students of all levels descend on MIS. It all gets started with Track and Explore, a joint partnership between MIS and Adrian College to introduce students to the science. The program sees schoolchildren touring MIS with Adrian College science students to learn about nature and the racetrack.
On May 3-5, Square One Education Network will be at MIS as students in K-12 learn how to integrate science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
Nearly 2,000 students representing about 120 registered teams from around the world will compete in one of the most prestigious of the SAE Collegiate Design Series events on May 9-11.
The racing season ends with the Michigan High School Athletic Association Cross Country Championships on Saturday, November 2.
Officials for the two-mile racetrack are always looking for other events, including concerts, festivals, NASCAR-style driving schools, weddings, proms, reunions and camping jamborees, among others.
2013 Michigan International Speedway Schedule
May 7-28 Track and Explore
May 3-5 Square One Education Network
May 9-11 Formula SAE
May 18 Michigan Wine and Beer Fest presented by Experience Jackson
May 25-26 Sports Car Club of America
June 14 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards and Sprint Cup Qualifying
June 15 NASCAR Nationwide Series Alliance Truck Parts 250
June 16 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans 400
June 29-30 Tough Mudder
July 19-21 Faster Horses Festival
July 25-28 Make-A-Wish/WAM Bike Ride
July 27 Drive 4 UR Community Program
August 16 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Practice and Qualifying
August 17 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
August 18 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400
August 23-25 CHUMP Car Series
September 11 Spirit of America
September 13-15 Michigan Karting Club
November 2 MHSAA State Cross Country Final
December 7 Charity Track and Toy Drive
From Brad Kuhbander / MIS