Here's news that may make racing enthusiasts nervous: NASCAR's first family is interested in taking operational control of California's historic Laguna Seca circuit.
If the deal is successful, the France family's International Speedway Corporation would take over track management from the current group in charge, the Sports Car Racing Association of the Monterey Peninsula.
But any deal for control for the famous track's future is fraught with peril.
Since Laguna Seca is owned by the Monterey County Parks Department, the public will get to voice concerns about any changes to the current arrangement, and those voices are likely to be hostile. Because with the noise and congestion surrounding events, race tracks don't always make the best neighbors.
And while millions of gearheads have dreamed of hurling their cars through the famous corkscrew, there are plenty of vocal locals who'd be happy if the track was closed forever to preserve the coastal area's peace and quiet.
To get on sound financial footing, the track needs more high-profile events—not fewer. Its finances are still feeling the loss of its MotoGP race in 2013.
But while many in the road-racing crowd may view NASCAR with derision, ISC currently operates over a dozen facilities in the United States. It constantly has to balance profitability with the concerns of neighboring communities. So its expertise in those areas could prove beneficial for Laguna Seca.
Stay tuned for news about the fate of one of the world's most cherished race tracks.