MARIETTA OH (WTAP)- It stretches one quarter of a mile and is paved by the crust of the earth. It seats 15 hundred thrill seekers willing to give up their voices. It is a prominent racing destination along the Ohio River in Marietta, and on Sunday, the Legendary Hilltop Speedway will be welcoming fans for the final time.
“It’s worked out good. It’s been a family oriented thing. Been a pretty good run of seven years even though the last couple years have been…you know the community seems to have been fallen off and I can’t say that to us alone. A lot of tracks around in the area have felt the same,” says Lahn Weppler, the speedway lessee.
A track that has been open since 1962, the Legendary Hilltop Speedway is nostalgic and important to so many.
“It’s very unfortunate this place is closing. I was looking forward to running more races here, filling out the rest of the schedule,” notes Colt Locker, an event spectator.
“Saw that this place was closing and we wanted to come down and both compete and pay our condolences if that is in fact what’s going to happen,” says Eddie McLean, another spectator at the track.
The track had been restored and reopened in 2012 by Lhan Weppler and his team, welcoming racing fans again for the first time since the early 80’s. On Sunday afternoon, fans filled the stands of the Legendary Hilltop Speedway for potentially, one last race.
“There have been a lot of people helping contribute over the years. A lot of volunteers, a lot of people wanting to see it be in place and it has ran very well very smooth. Being that I was a rookie when I started running a race tract, we’ve developed and critiques a lot of things and it’s sad to see all that go away because of the time and effort put into it,” notes Weppler.