Petty Holdings has announced that the Exotic Driving Experience at Walt Disney World Speedway, where a fatal accident occurred this weekend will be closed until May 1st.
Previously Petty Holdings had decided to close the exotic driving part of the Disney speedway attraction for just a week. A reason was not given for the change.
The Richard Petty Driving Experience, in which people race in NASCAR cars, will reopen Monday as planned.
Instructor Gary Terry was killed Sunday when a Lamborghini he was a passenger in crashed.
Both attractions were already slated to close permanently in August.
From the Orlando Sentinel –
The closing date for the Richard Petty Driving Experience and the Exotic Driving Experience at Walt Disney World has been extended for more than a month.
The Richard Petty Driving Experience, where fans can drive NASCAR cars or ride shotgun at speeds up to 165 mph, opened in 1997. Petty Holdings introduced the Exotic Driving Experience, where people can drive exotic sports cars, four years ago.
The final day on Aug. 9 will culminate with a charity ride in collaboration with Give Kids the World. The Richard Petty Driving Experience will auction off the last ride with proceeds benefiting the Kissimmee-based wish-granting nonprofit organization.
Also, Petty Holdings is offering a 43 percent discount on driving experiences booked on April 3 in honor of 43 Day (4/3). The unofficial day celebrates Petty’s famous #43 racecar. A $43 discount on ride-along experiences will also be available.
The offer is good for any available date at Disney World that is booked on on April 3, but will not be available at the company’s Daytona International Speedway location.
“This is a great way for Petty fans around the country to get behind the wheel, or in the passenger seat, of a stock car to experience the thrill of racing on some of the country’s most iconic tracks,” Chris Kirby, director of marketing for Petty Holdings, said in a release.
Petty Holdings announced in February that they will be leaving their Walt Disney World location to make way for transportation improvements. The speedway lies south of the Magic Kingdom parking lot and west of World Drive.
About half of the speedway’s 70 employees are permanent, with 12 full-time employees.
Disney hasn’t released detailed plans on the transportation improvements.
The Richard Petty Driving Experience and the Exotic Driving Experience will be permanently closing later this summer.
The driving experience attraction that gives daring guests the chance to drive a race track either on their own, or with a race car driver, will be closing in late June. Those guests who have already made a reservation will be able to move their drive to another Richard Petty course. The closest location being the Daytona Beach location.
The Richard Petty Driving Experience is located on the outskirts of the Ticket and Transportation Center parking lot. Disney has said that it expects to use the land for future transportation improvements, but has not elaborated on what those are.
Since New Fantasyland has opened, and the parks increased capacity, parking capacity at the TTC has become an issue, with that reaching capacity before the park itself reaches capacity. It is possible that Disney sees parking as a limiting factor to attendance at the Magic Kingdom, it may well be the case that more parking is being planned.
The Richard Petty Driving Experience expanded its offerings in 2012 with the addition of the Exotic Driving Experience where guests can drive super cars.
Beginning on June 14th, two brand new, full-sized custom character cars from the hit movie, Cars, will be debuting at the Richard Petty Driving Experience at Walt Disney World. The cars will include some famous Piston Cup racers – the #28 car, Aiken Axler, and the #80 car, Sage VanDerSpin. These new cars will be used in the all new Piston Cup Junior Ride-Along Program.
Children ages 6-13, will need to be least 48 inches tall to be able to experience the thrill as they ride shotgun with a professional driving instructor for three thrilling laps.
These two Piston Cup challengers have a storied history. Sage VanDerSpin (#80) races for Team “Gask-its” and is the youngest winner of the Junior Piston Cup Pro Series. Aiken Axler (#28) is the racer for Nitroade and he captured the Vitoline Rookie of the Year honors in his first full season of Cup competition. Both competitors will be sporting their team colors, as well as sponsors. In addition, their larger-than-life personalities will be brought to life, thanks to a specialty window wrap.