Jim Nelson, owner of the North Central Motor Speedway for the last 13 years, may have locked the speedway's front gate bars for his last time last Saturday night.
Cliff Sasker of Onamia has a purchase agreement with Nelson to buy the race track. No closing date has been set. Financial details were not disclosed.
"It's not sold until I have the money in my hand," Nelson of Anoka said in a phone interview Wednesday night. "I'm not jumping the gun, I'll tell you that."
Sasker, owner of Sasker Manufacturing in Onamia, said this morning he is waiting for the paperwork to be finalized.
If the sale is approved, Sasker said he will keep the third-mile dirt speedway "pretty much the same as it is."
He said he purchased the track to keep stock car racing in the area. The track, which ended its 43rd year, is five miles south of Brainerd on Highway 371.
Sasker's company also sponsors a few racers, including Dennis Goplen's Wissota Street Stock. Goplen is the company's engineer.
Three other classes are featured at the track every Saturday night -- Wissota Super Stock, Wissota Midwest Modified and NCMS Pure Stock.
Sasker said he has purchased 42 concrete wall sections from a contractor in the Twin Cities, which will be installed on the speedway's backstretch. He also is in search of new lighting for the speedway and will be putting new clay on the track soon.
"We're excited and anxious to get it going but we have to wait our time," he said.
As far as Nelson's time, he said he will remember the people especially the good people during his ownership.
He noted that he has raced at a lot of tracks but considers the speedway as his favorite.
"I'll have to make a deal with Cliff to have a lifetime membership there," he said.
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