Geely, the massive Chinese automaker that owns Volvo, Lotus and, weirdly, a flying car startup, now owns a new piece of real estate in the U.S.: the Utah Motorsports Campus in Tooele County, Utah.
The Tooele County Commissioners voted in favor of selling the track to a Geely subsidiary, Mitime, for an undisclosed amount. It is the first-known acquisition of “a major, non-private American motor racing facility by a foreign company,” reports Road & Track.
The sale not only includes the racetrack, but also all of the buildings and physical assets on the 511-acre property. Currently, Ford runs a driving school at the campus, but the press release from UMC says that current leases, event organizers and race-sanctioning bodies will be honored under the new agreement, but could be subject to change next year.
UMC was opened in 2006 and has a multi-configurational 4.438-mile road circuit, a 0.9-mile, multi-configurational karting track, an off-road short course, a rock-crawling course and the Nitro World Games rallycross track. It’s hosted the American Le Mans Series, Pirelli World Challenge, Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series, NASCAR K&N Pro Series West, American Historic Racing Motorcycle Association and various other events.
The track was operated under a lease agreement between the Miller family, which built it, and Tooele County, which owned it. After the 10-year lease expired in 2015, the family didn’t renew it, so the track became in the county’s responsibility. From the release:
Mitime attempted to purchase the track then, but legal battles postponed the sale until now. In order to keep the facility functional and viable, the county hired the Mitime group – which included many of the employees from Miller Motorsports Park (the track’s original name) – to manage and maintain the facility beginning in 2016. The named was changed to Utah Motorsports Campus at that time to eliminate confusion.
The track is located about 30 minutes west of Salt Lake City. Geely also owns and operates the FIA Chinese Formula 4 Championship.