What had many dirt track enthusiasts excited for has now turned into disappointing news as I-96 Speedway has had to put all the action on hold.

Just hosting their season opener on June 12th, the Ionia County Health Department stepped in and asked that I-96 does not resume in the same fashion.

MLive reports owner Jeff Dice detailed on the Speedway's Facebook the notifications he received from the states' Department of Attorney General, Ionia County prosecuting attorney Kyle Butler, and from the Ionia County Health Department all with the same message...advising him to not proceed.

Dice told MLive that last week, the track's season opener brought in 1,824 fans, barely making a dent in the track's 6,500 person capacity. The issue, though, remains that according to the public health order, even that violated Whitmer's executive order restricting outdoor gatherings to 100 people or less.

While other tracks around the state have opened up, according to Dice, he can't help but wonder why his track has ended up in this situation.

Being between Lansing and Grand Rapids makes I-96 speedway a great middle ground for drivers and fans from West Michigan to Mid-Michigan and beyond.

“We are making them sign COVID forms, we have hand sanitizer and masks,” Dice told MLive when making a case for why I-96 should remain open. “We are following all the rules. We have temperature readers to take peoples’ temperatures in case someone doesn’t know they are sick. We are following every rule possible."

Of course every track needs people to come out and watch the races in order to keep the place running, another concern Dice pointed out.

In his Facebook post, Dice urged fans of the track to contact the powers that be and ‘FLOOD their phones with our DEMAND for our RIGHTS!’

Looks like we may still have to wait a bit before we can head out to the tracks for a night of racing...at least as spectators. NASCAR has been back for a few weeks now and is just now allowing a limited number of fans for Sunday's race at Talladega.

Enter your number to get our free mobile app