Wind destroys part of Devils Lake Speedway

Journal Staff Report
Volunteers were out in full force helping Nolan Olmstead and his crew clean up after strong straight-line winds sent a whole section of the grandstand tumbling, bending concrete reinforced fence poles all along the track’s turn No. 1, shown above.

The meterologists on TV called it a straight-line wind and warned residents of the Lake Region that the storm that passed through in the wee hours of Thursday, Aug. 29 that those winds could be damaging.

They were right.

Nolan Olmstead who owns and manages the Devils Lake Speedway spent the day Thursday cleaning up the damage from those straight-line winds that lifted the main  grandstand and pushed it forward more than two feet and sent an entire section tumbling against concrete-reinforced fencing reducing it to rubble.

Volunteers from around the region were helping Olmstead including the guys from Schill Construction in Langdon and some of the drivers who appear regularly at the Speedway.

Olmstead said he was grateful that the bar and grill wasn’t damaged and that no one was hurt in the storm although his father’s trailerhouse was moved approximately four feet from its original location.

The storm hit their area at approximately 6 a.m. Thursday,  Aug.29.

“Here I thought I wouldn’t have much going on this week,” Olmstead said. “Now, look at all this!” With a wave of his arm he indicated the piles of broken boards and twisted metal - all that remains of a portion of the grandstand that once stood on the south side of the main grandstand.

Numerous signs and banners posted around the racetrack were also badly damaged but the track itself was not, neither was the bar and grill. The main portion of the grandstand sustained some damage, but Olmstead thought they could straighten it out and still use it nonetheless.

On the Devils Lake Speedway schedule for Aug. 31 at 7 p.m. Christie Motors and Langdon Implement present the track championship professional dirt series.

Sept. 1 Bobcat presents Points Championship Professional Dirt Series plus mechanics and Powder Puff Races at 5 p.m.