Auto City Speedway Tested as RallyCross Venue

On Sunday, February 13, Detroit Region SCCA hosted a small test day at Auto City Speedway in Clio, MI to assess it’s viability as a RallyCross site.

A group of roughly 20 experienced participants were invited to take runs on the surface to simulate the wear and tear from an event. The area in question at Auto City Speedway is a 35-acre clay field that is adjacent to the track. According to site ownership, the field is not regularly used for any consistent purpose and was a corn field until 2016.

After it was no longer used for farming, the field was rolled and mowed and has been rented off an on for various events such as festivals and fairs. Based on the results of our test day, we feel that this could potentially be a suitable venue for future events, but there are still too many question marks to schedule a championship points event there.

The biggest question is what will happen to the several hundred GM trucks that are currently parked in Auto City’s front lot. GM is storing them there in order to keep their Flint, MI production line moving while the trucks await critical chips that are needed before they are ready for sale. However, site ownership has stated that GM wants to move the trucks to the back lot sometime in the spring. That would not bode well for usability of the site as beyond the obvious issue of a large number of trucks being parked on it, moving that many vehicles on and off of it would cause significant damage to the surface.

The other unknown at this time is what the surface is like when it is not frozen or covered in snow. Based on what was observed at the test day, we were able to find out a few things about the field, such as where some of the water drains and where some soft spots are. However, because the surface is still very much frozen, we can’t accurately predict what the site will be like in the warmer months.

Based on our test day, it was agreed by those in attendance that this was a worthwhile venue to pursue for future events. However, it was also agreed that further testing was needed before an honest assessment of the venue could be made. Ownership has informed the region that they should know if the trucks are staying put or moving into the field by the end of February. If they stay put, our current plan is to host a public Test & Tune at Auto City Speedway in August to determine what we think of the facility for warm weather usage.

Thank you to everyone who came out to help us test the venue and thanks to Xander Cesari of Merriman Industries for shooting photos at the event. His full gallery can be found here.