|After months of wrangling and fan protests, the old
Atomic Speedway finally fell to the economic stresses of the day.
Crete Carrier Corp. had
bought the property with plans to build a fleet terminal for their
Having overcome a number of political hurdles, Crete is well on the way to completing the new terminal. The new business will provide jobs and much tax revenue for Roane County.
Atomic Speedway was one of the most popular tracks in the area. After Carson Branum sold the track in early 2003, its demise ensued. Branum's final year was a troubled year and that forced him to sell the facility to Jim Varnell of Knoxville. Varnell held events at the speedway, but weekly attendance declined.
After two years of ownership, Varnell sold the track to Ed Adams, a retired businessman from Lenoir City who sponsored a number of drivers at Atomic. Adams came in with a plan to freshen up the track with paint, pressure washers, and reworked the racing surface. The move was applauded, but fans came out primarily for special events.
Adams sold the track two years later to Crete Carrier. Adams said the property was worth more as a commercial or industrial site.