East Tennessee racing fans will have to wait a little longer to find out the fate of the Cleveland Speedway. Action had been scheduled to take place in the bankruptcy court in Chattanooga on Thursday, December 12. However, that action has been delayed until next week. The scheduled date of hearings for that court on the track’s fate is now set for December 19th.
Lisa Clem Willkomm, wife of track owner Ronnie Willkomm, confirmed that the court’s action had been postponed but said that the Trustee would have to be contacted to learn the reason for the delay. Attempts to contact the Trustee have so far been unsuccessful.
The Cleveland Speedway has been in operation since the early 1950s. At one time it was operated by legendary NASCAR star Joe Lee Johnson, winner of the initial World 600 at the Charlotte Motor Speedway in 1960. From 2004 to 2011, the 1/3mile clay oval was under the direction of partners Monty Morrow and Ronnie Willkomm. After the U.S. Federal Bankruptcy Court granted a two year time period to resolve the facility’s debt in 2011, Willkomm assumed the duties of operating the track.
However, that two year period ended and the court has made the decision to have the property sold to settle its debt.
In recent years, the historic track has run weekly shows featuring multiple classes along with touring series such as the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series, Southern All Stars and the Southern Nationals.
The Gobbler events sanctioned by the Southern All Stars and won by Jake Knowles was the final event held at the Cleveland Speedway in 2013.