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Teenage Dream – Barry Richard Becomes New Owner of Hometown Miramichi Oval

Like his predecessor, Barry Richard spent many childhood weekends at the stock car oval on McKinnon Road in Douglastown.

Years later, he now owns Speedway Miramichi.

Richard and his family have completed the purchase of the facility from Moncton businessmen Jason Carnahan and David Neilson. The ink began to dry over the weekend and the official announcement was made by Carnahan via the track’s social media pages (copy of the announcement is here) just after the 10pm hour on Monday evening.

“You could say I lived at the race track in my teens,” said Richard via phone on Tuesday morning. “This sport is a passion. I never drove a car, but I spent many years as a teenager working on pit crews.”

Richard, from Miramichi, is currently a manager at a McDonalds and is looking forward to the transition. “I’m excited to enter this new venture, this is my hometown track I grew up at, but I’m a bit nervous at the same time.”

While his employment has given him plenty of management and customer service experience, the office side of the business will be a bit new to him. He has racing experience, but has been away from the sport for a few years spending time with, and growing, a family. Richard and his wife Shelby have two children, Tyler and Emily, that they will be introducing the sport to through the track.


As for racing at the North Shore oval, it is business as usual, not just for 2015, but for the future as well.

“We will be continuing on with the same schedule that Jason and his management team have set up for 2015. We know drivers, teams and fans book their vacations around these events and we respect this. We are looking at rescheduling some of the rained out dates that were lost at the start of the season, like the Demolition event that is now a part of the ‘Chi City Showdown weekend.”

The September 19th and 20th weekend features both stock car racing and demolition cards, something that fans can expect for years to come.

“We’ve already begun getting the ball rolling, thinking about and early planning for 2016. We’re looking at running a bit more often next year and running longer point championships for both stock cars and demolition competitors. By running more races, we are hoping to build a even bigger fan base and car count. We want to expand our schedule in 2016 for the faster cars as well, which includes the Late Model Sportsman class. We are also looking at various other motorsports events to bring in throughout the season to peak local interest. There is a lot of potential to bring entertainment to the Miramichi area with this track, to bring new faces through the gate and give another option for family entertainment value within the city.”

Richard is quick to thank Jason Carnahan for all the work he has done with the facility, one Richard also looked at purchasing at the time Carnahan did in 2012, and is thankful for his advice throughout this time. “Jason has been great throughout,” said Richard of his predecessor. “He is always a phone call away and am excited for him to mentor us through this new adventure.”

The Richard family plan on building on what Carnahan and Neilson have built at the Speedway, providing a great motorsports experience for the entire family. Richard plans on some small improvements to the facility in the coming months, including increased cement in the infield for the popular burnout competitions and, in turn, to keep dirt from coming onto the track.

With Richard’s food services background, fans can expect some quicker turnaround times at the canteens.

Many of the familiar faces on staff will be staying on board, because as Richard adds, “there is no sense cleaning the slate. The staff that are in place are great at what they do and have a passion for the sport.”

As for reaction, it has been all positive. “My phone has been steady and there have been a lot of Facebook messages congratulating us and wishing us well,” said Richard. “We were at the last race as observers, sitting back and seeing how everything was run. I am looking forward to meeting everyone Saturday, getting to the driver’s meeting, talking to the teams and building for the future.”


One of those hometown drivers that is excited to see racing continue in the Miramichi is Brady Creamer. Creamer has campaigned his Pro Stock car around the province of New Brunswick in recent years, which includes a top five run at his home track in the ‘Chi City Showdown one year ago. “I think it’s great that motorsports will live on in Miramichi,” said Creamer on the announcement. “I don’t know the new owners personally, but I’ve heard they want to keep improving stock car racing around the area. Jason Carnahan got the ball rolling and I hope the new owners can keep things going and continue to work with the other New Brunswick tracks to have the best overall product to provide for fans.”

The future for motorsports in Miramichi looks bright with Barry Richard and his family at the helm of Speedway Miramichi. The current season will roll on this Saturday, July 25th with a “Spin to Win” Demolition Event, along with stock car racing in the Street Stock, Mini Stock and Atlantic Modified Tour divisions. Action will kick off at 6pm.

For complete, up to date, event information, please visit Speedway Miramichi on Facebook.





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