“Wheels of Fortune”
NASCAR is more than a sport. It’s a big business. Motor sports pump nearly six billion dollars per year into North Carolina’s economy, and NASCAR accounts for most of that. A new WRAL documentary titled “Wheels of Fortune” looks at the economic impact of NASCAR in North Carolina. It airs Wednesday, October 11th at 7pm. The program is hosted by WRAL news reporter Cullen Browder.
NASCAR’s impact is far more than just the money fans spend at hotels, restaurants, retail stores and other businesses when they attend a NASCAR race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway near Charlotte. Most of it is generated by the NASCAR teams based in North Carolina, the jobs they create, and the local businesses they depend on for supplies and services.
A year-round tourism industry has also evolved around NASCAR in North Carolina. The race teams’ shops and museums have become attractions that draw fans from all over the country and the NASCAR Hall of Fame, which is coming to Charlotte, will be a new attraction that could generate as much as $62 million per year in Mecklenburg County. Some see NASCAR’s decision to locate its Hall of Fame in our state as recognition of NASCAR’s North Carolina roots and affirmation that the sport is in our state to stay.
“Wheels of Fortune” examines NASCAR’s growth in North Carolina and the tremendous economic impact it’s had on our state. It explores the business of NASCAR from the races, to the race teams, to NASCAR related tourism. It looks at some of the growing pains that cost two North Carolina communities their NASCAR races. It also introduces viewers to some of the people who’ve made the sport what it is today, and upon whom its continued success depends – NASCAR fans.