For Immediate Release
Brazilian steakhouse’s last day will be April 7
TOOELE VALLEY, UTAH (April 3, 2019) — Utah Motorsports Campus (UMC) regrets to announce that Rodizio Grill Restaurant will not be renewing their subsidized lease at UMC and have made known that they will cease operations after this weekend.
Despite the fact that UMC heavily subsidized the Rodizio Grill operation in a number of ways, they were unable to produce any positive results under the profit-sharing agreement with UMC.
"We have enjoyed our partnership with Rodizio and are sad to see them go,” said William Lee, President of UMC. “We wish them the best of luck in their future endeavors. An earnest attempt was made by everyone involved to find a mutually-beneficial arrangement for both parties. We will immediately begin a new search for a restaurant partner to host the tens of thousands of local residents, tourists and race fans who patronize UMC."
Rodizio has announced that their last day of service will be on Sunday, April 7th. Employees of their UMC location have all been offered positions within the company at their three other Utah locations.
UMC is very pleased with the various partnerships and user groups in place and will continually search for additional future partnerships that will benefit everyone involved.
The 2019 racing season at UMC got underway last weekend and will continue through mid-October. The UMC Kart Track is scheduled to be open for 2019 kart rentals starting April 15.
Rebuilding Year’ Sees Fewer Major Events, More Variety
TOOELE VALLEY, UTAH (March 8, 2019) — Following the long-delayed sale of Utah Motorsports Campus (UMC) from Tooele County to Mitime Utah Investment, LLC in late 2018, the track is proud to announce its 2019 event schedule.
UMC’s 2019 season will provide fewer “major” events due to the fact that the sale closing was delayed longer than anticipated, making it impossible to commit to 2019 dates in a timely manner. There will, however, be some new events, some old favorites and more variety.
“We’re really excited to finally start building a future for UMC,” said Dixon Hunt, UMC Vice President of Sales and Marketing. “With the schedule complete, we can turn our attention to a number of projects that we have been considering and we also have a lot of ‘sprucing up’ to do that would not have been appropriate when we were spending the hard-earned money of Tooele County’s taxpayers.
“Despite the fact that we’ll have a few less ‘major’ events in 2019, we maintain good relationships with the sanctioning bodies that have raced here and we expect to have more such events in the future. We have put together a great schedule for this year, though, and we can’t wait to get going. In addition, we have had an amazing number of requests for corporate and manufacturer events in 2019. We want to thank all of our racers, fans and neighbors for their patience and understanding. Now, let’s go racing!”
The highlight of the year will undoubtedly be the return of the Nitro World Games. Travis Pastrana’s innovative event was a smash hit and an overnight international sensation, and the second year is shaping up to be even more epic than the first. Nitro World Games will be announcing their event dates in the near future.
Also returning will be the MotoAmerica Superbike Championship on June 14-16. North America’s top professional motorcycle road racers will return to one of their favorite tracks, defying gravity as they rip around the track with knees and elbows dragging in the corners.
Endurance racing seems to be undergoing a bit of a resurgence, and UMC will host a number of endurance races this year. These include the Lucky Dog Racing League’s Salty Dawg Sprint-Duro on May 24-26, the ChampCar Endurance Series Double 8 on July 27-28, as well as two enduros for NASA Utah and one for the USBA Law Tigers Masters of the Mountains. There will be a pair of national-level kart races, with Superkarts! USA returning after a few years’ absence on May 3-4 and Stars and Stripes Rotax Racing make an inaugural appearance May 17-19.
Old favorites returning include the AHRMA Bonneville Vintage Grand Prix for vintage and historic motorcycles on Labor Day Weekend, our longest-running event, as well as the Porsche Pirelli Trophy West series on July 19-21. We will also have a couple of events with the Porsche Club of America’s Intermountain Region.
If you prefer your track action with less noise and speed, UMC has two bicycle races booked this season. The Utah Criterium Series will race on the West Track on June 7, and Extra Mile Racing will race on the same track on July 26.
Our two car shows that proved to be so popular last year will return in 2019. The third annual Cruzer Palooza Classic and Custom Car Show is scheduled for May 25, while the Import Sprint Showoff will take place June 1.
A new feature this year will be Xtreme Xperience on August 23-24. This is an interactive event that allows participants to drive (or be driven in) an exotic sports car such as a Ferrari, Lamborghini or Porsche on the racetrack. We expect this to be very popular with Utah’s sports car enthusiasts.
Other non-racing events include Night Lights on May 18 and September 28 and the Muddy Princess 5K Obstacle Mud Run on June 9.
UMC’s vibrant amateur racing scene will continue to be strong in 2019. The sports cars of NASA Utah will present a seven-race schedule, and the Utah Sport Bike Association will sanction six-round championships for both the Law Tigers Masters of the Mountains road racing series and the Utah Supermoto Championship.Also, Salt City Drift will conduct amateur drifting events and the Utah Region of the Sports Car Club of America will host autocross competitions throughout the season.
As was the case last year, and as a “thank-you” to our neighbors in Tooele County, all of UMC’s amateur racing events will be free admission.
The UMC Kart Center will open for kart rentals and group/corporate events on April 15, the Ford Performance Racing School will be conducting classes throughout the season and the onsite Rodizio Grill restaurant continues to serve amazing Brazilian fare on the weekends.
For event or ticket information, or for questions regarding UMC, call 435-277-8000 or visit the track’s website at www.UtahMotorsportsCampus.com.
John Gardner, Public Relations Manager
If you are an event planner, or just looking for a fun outing for a family or group in the Salt Lake City metro area, Utah Motorsports Campus (UMC) can help you create an unforgettable experience.
UMC is an internationally renowned, world-class motorsports facility located in the Tooele Valley between the Oquirrh and Stansbury mountain ranges just south of the Great Salt Lake. We are a convenient 30-minute drive from downtown Salt Lake City and only 20 minutes from the Salt Lake International Airport.
Utah’s largest outdoor event venue offers a variety of fun activities and experiences for groups ranging from 10 to 10,000 at our 511-acre facility. Our expert event planning staff can work with you to customize an event specifically tailored to your needs and budget, limited only by your imagination.
Our go-kart track – the only outdoor karting facility in Utah – offers a number of fun and competitive programs for groups that will get your guests fired up and racing for bragging rights; our multi-driver endurance races will also promote teamwork and group camaraderie.
UMC also offers a variety of racing events – sports cars, motorcycles and off-road racing – at which you can host a group outing, replete with full catering, VIP options, and special access. These provide a fantastic and exciting social outing for families, employees, guests, and business prospects.
If your outing requires a meeting space, we have a diverse selection to choose from, ranging from classrooms to meeting rooms to a full-fledged banquet hall. All can be reserved with full A/V capability and catering.
Over the years, we have hosted almost every imaginable kind of event: Lantern Fests, concerts, Mud Runs, conventions, reunions…even weddings!
So, if you’re planning an event for your group at a venue in the Salt Lake City metro area, we hope you will allow our team to work with you to custom-design the perfect, unforgettable outing that your guests will rave about for months!
For more information submit a Request for Proposal.
2019 will be a rebuilding year for Utah Motorsports Campus, according to Dixon Hunt, UMC vice-president of marketing and partnerships. “Up to this point, we ran the facility for the county on a year-by-year agreement,” he said. “Now that we own it, we can make long term commitments. That will help us in scheduling events and recruiting sponsors.” The end of the year closing time for the UMC sale has put the new owner — Mitime Utah, LLC — at a disadvantage in scheduling the 2019 racing season, according to Hunt. “We didn’t know until October that we were going to get to buy UMC,” he said. “And then there were two months of negotiations. That made scheduling series for 2019 difficult.” UMC isn’t ready to announce its 2019 schedule yet, but it can say that the Nitro World Games, the MotoAmerica Series, and Lantern Fest — now named Night Lights — will be back in 2019, according to John Gardner, UMC’s public relations manager. During the three and half years since Tooele County’s first attempt to sell the former Miller Motorsports Park to Mitime, county officials have said one reason they rejected an offer for more cash was Mitime’s lower bid included investments in the facility that would reap future economic benefits more valuable than a short-term benefit of more cash in the bank.
The 2015 deal included promises and speculation of an initial investment of around $6 million to upgrade the facility, a hotel-like dormitory to house 60 to 80 people, a three-eighths-mile oval for training drivers, a manufacturing facility, tourists from China, and educational opportunities. The previous plans may have changed, but Hunt remains adamant that under Mitime’s ownership, UMC will see significant investment and growth. “We would not have laid out the huge investment to buy this facility if we did not have the intention to grow this place,” he said. Mitime is currently working on an exploratory study of several possibilities for UMC, according to Hunt. While Hunt didn’t mention any specific projects, his message was clear — whether it’s a drag strip and racing oval or a hotel, the key to future investments will be profitability. “We have shareholders to answer to now,” Hunt said. “They are ready to make the investment necessary to grow business, but we have to show them that there will be profitability.” Along with profitability, UMC has to consider things like infrastructure, permits, zoning and a variety of regulations, he said. “Our biggest problem right now with bringing in big crowds is roads,” Hunt said. “I have to meet with emergency management people at the county and plan different routes to bring people in. We really need the Midvalley Highway.”
Part of the reason for changes from Mitime’s initial plans for UMC is the needs of Geely Holding Company, Mitime’s parent company, have changed. Back in 2015, Geely had one racetrack under construction in China and four more on the drawing board. UMC was going to be used as a training ground for both racetrack operations and race car drivers. Workers and race car drivers from China would come to UMC, stay in the hotel on the grounds, and learn their job. Geely, China’s largest private automobile manufacturer, would ship over parts to race cars that would be assembled here. After training, the drivers and cars would be shipped back to China. Geely has opened its first racetrack in China, and no longer needs a U.S.-based training facility, according to Hunt. Geely itself has changed, becoming a global company with ownership of Volvo, Proton, Lotus, the London Taxi Company, Terrafugia, and the largest shareholder in Daimler. Geely also recently announced plans to work with China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation on supersonic train technology. Geely’s growth has helped UMC, according to Hunt. “It has really helped us when it comes to scheduling some of these big events out here to have the backing and influence of a global company,” he said. In addition to changes in Geely, the racing industry itself is changing, according to Gardner.
“We’re starting to see events where the facilities are more entrant, or participant-centered, with spectators from around the world watching a broadcast,” he said. Under Mitime’s management, UMC has already branched out into hosting non-motorized events and renting meeting space. “We’re probably Utah’s largest outdoor event venue,” Hunt said. Attracting new events like Lantern Fest and the Nitro World Games, along with renting meeting facilities, has helped reduce UMC’s operating loss, according to Hunt. Without putting a figure on the loss amount, Gardner, who has worked at UMC since it was opened by Larry Miller in 2006, said the operating loss is lower than it has ever been. “That’s just it,” Hunt said. “Geely didn’t buy UMC to just let it sit as is and lose money. With three years experience running this place, we know it can make money, but it’s going to have to grow. This will be a rebuilding year. But watch, this place is going to grow.”
Written by Tim Gillie for the Tooele Transcript Bulletin