Oval track racing at the Spokane County Raceway is over for the season and racing fans are fired up, rallying behind former track managers and accusing raceway operators of playing dirty with leases and agreements.
Brian Green bought his car -- a '79 Mustang -- with the dream of racing this year in Spokane County.
"We really wanted to support that by brining up the car count for the fans and they'd have a good show to put on," he said.
But for now that dream is on hold.
"That amount need to be paid in full by the 26th or that lease will be terminated," Sherri Tarr said.
The Tarrs are blaming a lack of beer sales for their financial woes.
"Beer sales is a huge part of the money it takes to run this place," Brycen said.
The Tarrs had beer sales last year, and they thought they would have it again this season. The contracts for the Tarrs from last year to this year were the same expect this year raceway operations manager Craig Smith banned them from selling alcohol.
The reason? An oversight by the State Liquor Control Board during their first year that was corrected their second season at the track.
"Under Washington state law you can not loan your liquor license. So you can not loan it out to another business entity," Spokane County Commissioner Todd Mielke said Monday.
Smith's company, Raceway Investments, LLC, controls the license to sell beer at the track.
"We expected to have that revenue so it was a big shock," Brycen said.
Monday afternoon outside the county offices race fans rallied with the Tarrs, accusing Smith of playing dirty. The Tarrs approached Smith during the season for a compromise but he declined.
"Craig had told us that if beer was sold he would retain 100 percent of the profits," Sherri Tarr said.
"I thought about it a little bit and no I'm not interested in doing more work. That doesn't do anything for me," Craig Smith said.
Smith explained that the Tarrs failed to come up with a business plan that would insure they would be able to stay solvent, keep the track open and pay their bills on time.
"Apparently non-alcoholic concession spending was less than anticipated, in spite of their practice of distributing thousands of free or discounted tickets to events," Smith said in a written statement.
The Tarrs said in light of the loss of beer sales this season they should have cancelled the season but weren't ready to make a pit stop just yet.
"I think that our racers understand that we did this for them," Sherri Tarr said.
Most of them do.
"Would be really cool to actually have a track in Washington that we support instead of going over to Stateline and supporting Idaho," Green said.
Smith says he'll hire a manager for the super oval next year, bringing the track under control of Raceway Investments, meaning beer sales -- and racing -- will be back on track.
"What I do known is that in 2013 the oval track will reopen under a new promoter," Smith said.