Rest easy, Radford Racing School isn’t going anywhere
Arizona drag-racing fans were dealt a huge blow when news broke last month that Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in Maricopa County would be closing in 2023 to make room for expansion of Interstate 10, which runs parallel to its boat-racing course and its NHRA drag strip.
Due to its close proximity to the drag strip, speculation arose that Radford Racing School, which took up the reins of the Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving next door to Wild Horse, would suffer the same fate.
We’re happy to inform you that Radford will not be affected by the closing of Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park. We spoke to Mike Kessler, the general manager of Radford Racing School, who tells us that the school will continue to educate drivers at the facility and that the 1.6-mile course that has sculpted racers’ talents for decades will still be in use. Kessler will be meeting with the Gila River Indian Community later this week to learn more about the plans that will bring new construction near Radford, but Kessler told us the school has heard that nothing should change its lease, which lasts for seven more years, and that the racing school “will be operating and conducting business as usual.”
Of course, this news is still bittersweet. The closing of Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park means that Arizona drag racers and fans will now have to venture to Tucson Dragway, more than 100 miles to the southeast, to find the nearest straight-line action. As much as we hate to see the drag strip go—it’s much harder to build a new one than it is to keep an existing one running—at least there’s some solace that drivers can still get behind the wheel at Radford for years to come.