Ohio Racetrack Plans to Defy Shelter-in-Place Orders

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey

Commenters, rev up your typing fingers. This post is sure to stir debate.

Summit Motorsport in Ohio is planning to re-open soon, despite Ohio’s shelter-in-place orders.

The track’s season opener already didn’t take place due to shelter-in-place. Now, owner Bill Bader Jr. is taking to Facebook Live to talk about his defiance on video.

“I understand the importance of safety,” he said in the video. “I understand the importance of following a procedure and a protocol. But I will tell you this. If you look at the [infection] numbers, as a result of COVID-19, they are a fraction of projections. If you look at three weeks ago, a month ago, the media, Dr. [Anthony] Fauci [director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases], whomever drove this machine led us to believe that this was going to be a catastrophic loss of life, and it’s proving now that that is not going to be the case.”

Apparently, Bader wants to reopen even if the restrictions are still in place because, like just about every other business owner, he’s taking it on the chin financially.

This is as good a time as any to remind you, dear reader, that this virus has taken more than 30,000 American lives in about a month’s time, and over 400 of those have been in the Buckeye State.

“What we have now is a situation where social distancing, best practices, we have empowered and enabled all these people, and if they had their way, they would save every human life,” he said. “And the question I would have for them is, at what expense? If in Huron County, if we are able to save every life and limit and ultimately mitigate any outbreaks of COVID-19, but in the process of that we all starve to death, then what did we accomplish?

“Many of us feel we are approaching a state where it is safe to reengage, it is safe to go back outside, and I think the American people want to go back to work. I think that is evident, and you’re seeing all of these peaceful protests, that in the days and weeks to come will become less peaceful.

“And so, the message I have to share is that we are opening. Summit Motorsports Park is not going to wait for permission. We will open this year.”

Bader appears to be falling for the false choice between saving lives and saving the economy. He doesn’t seem to realize that opening up too soon will work against efforts to squelch the virus’ spread, and if that’s the case, customers will likely be avoiding public spaces, such as racetracks, anyway.

Not to mention that lifting the shelter-in-place orders too soon will likely make the outbreak last longer.

Bader added that he hasn’t seen government relief, and has reduced his full-time staff headcount to just three. He plans to announce this year’s schedule next week.

I’d suggest that instead of blaming the public health experts for doing what they think is best to mitigate the outbreak and minimize the loss of life, perhaps Bader’s anger should be directed at the virus itself. Or, since blaming a microorganism for doing what it’s designed to do – replicate and spread – may be seen as a waste of time, perhaps he could express his anger at government relief efforts that have been, to put it charitably, a mess to this point.

Just a thought.

[Image: Summit Motorsports Park]

Tim Healey
Tim Healey

Tim Healey grew up around the auto-parts business and has always had a love for cars — his parents joke his first word was “‘Vette”. Despite this, he wanted to pursue a career in sports writing but he ended up falling semi-accidentally into the automotive-journalism industry, first at Consumer Guide Automotive and later at Web2Carz.com. He also worked as an industry analyst at Mintel Group and freelanced for About.com, CarFax, Vehix.com, High Gear Media, Torque News, FutureCar.com, Cars.com, among others, and of course Vertical Scope sites such as AutoGuide.com, Off-Road.com, and HybridCars.com. He’s an urbanite and as such, doesn’t need a daily driver, but if he had one, it would be compact, sporty, and have a manual transmission.

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  • Raevoxx Raevoxx on Apr 23, 2020

    Came to check on mediocre articles, and see if the place still has rampant ignorant, hyper-conservative, MAGA-Pushing, science-defying, armchair-jockeying, out-of-touch commentariat. Didn't leave disappointed. Half of you should be committed to a mental institution, and another quarter of you need to be under straight-up house arrest for endangering others by being basically a willing virus infection vector to help destroy even more businesses and lives. "It's just a cold". JFC, people like EBFlex I already knew were pretty touched in the head, but this is an all-new level of ignorance. This has to be some straight-up trolling, no questions asked, because you all can't possibly be this brokenly stupid. People like them are the most dangerous people in this country. Even moreso than Michigan friggen' militia. Just wow. I hope none of you end up dead or mourning a loved one from COVID19.

  • -Nate -Nate on May 02, 2020

    5.2.20 Been thinking about this as I worked on my jalopies in the back yard and missed my 21.5 year old dog who died, I'm getting restless too but don't want to be one more stupid v*rus vector like the pin heads who jammed the Orange County beaches shoulder to shoulder screaming "freedom !" yesterday . The guy who put on the 'Fools Errand' drive and I were E-Mailing and he said something about a Social Distancing road trip to New Mexico and back, where would we sleep ? . This might be *just* the thing, I won't have any problem keeping 6' + away from anyone else but I'm not 20 anymore so sleeping in my car isn't much fun . -Nate

  • Dartdude They need to rebrand the models, The standard model should be Wagoneer and long version should be Grand Wagoneer. There should offer the Ram Rev powertrain in these
  • Irvingklaws Seems more like they're adopting Honda styling queues. Now if they would just adopt their reliability...
  • FreedMike "Obsidian Edition."Oooooh, obsidian is really, really hard stuff.
  • John The awesome Infiniti G series saved this company 20 years ago, but they are right back on track to obsolescence. (yawn)
  • Teddyc73 White with black wheels, I'm so sick of. Or dull grey and black wheels. Just stop.
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