Since 2002, Homestead-Miami Speedway has been the culmination of championship dreams for many drivers on the NASCAR circuit. As the sport’s season- ending event, Ford Championship Weekend has crowned champions in each of NASCAR’s three major series for the past 13 years, and will do so once again, Nov. 20-22.
And for the past 20 years, Homestead- Miami Speedway has played a vital role in helping to make dreams come true for an entire region which was so adversely affected by the wrath of Hurricane Andrew on Aug. 24, 1992.
Homestead-Miami Speedway, which broke ground exactly one year after Andrew made landfall, has been the chief economic engine in getting south Miami- Dade County, and Homestead in particular, back on its feet since the track opened its doors in November 1995.
Each year, the ongoing operations at Homestead-Miami Speedway generate more than $301 million of direct and indirect economic impact on Miami-Dade County. This makes Ford Championship Weekend one of the largest annual recurring events in Miami-Dade County, according to figures which were part of a recent study conducted by the Washington Economics Group (WEG).
“Homestead-Miami Speedway is proud, not only to play host to NASCAR’s championship events each year, but even more importantly to have played an integral role in the economic recovery of south Miami- Dade County,” said Matthew Becherer, Homestead-Miami Speedway president. “Our venue has done exactly what it was intended to do when Ralph Sanchez built it 20 years ago — provide a tremendous economic impact on an area that had a huge need for it.
“The events that we host throughout the year have all contributed to this, but Ford Championship Weekend is by far our signature event,” he added. “We have an outstanding fan base here in South Florida, and constantly giving back to the community is one of our many goals as a track. It is gratifying to know that we have made a difference in the lives of many and that we will continue to do so for many years to come.”
Other pertinent figures revealed by the study:
• The Speedway has created more than 3,100 permanent jobs;
•Homestead-Miami Speedway is responsible for more than $138 million of household income on a yearly basis;
•Homestead-Miami Speedway contributes more than $201 million in Gross Domestic Product to Miami-Dade County annually;
• Homestead-Miami Speedway annually generates more than $50 million in public revenues, and
•Attendees at Ford Championship Weekend come from more than 30 foreign countries and all 50 states.
“These significant economic impacts generated by Homestead-Miami Speedway are not just important to the economic development of the City of Homestead and Miami-Dade County, but are integral to the region’s global branding as a professional sports leader in the U.S.,” said J. Antonio Villamil, CEO at WEG. “Through increases in jobs, household income and economic activity, the speedway is a magnet to outof- town visitors and new businesses and a catalyst for growth in the county’s sports, entertainment and tourism clusters.”