X Games execs: Speedway 'optimum' for games

Credit: (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 30: Shaun White celebrates his final skate on his way to a gold medal in the Skateboard Vert Final during day 3 of X Games 17 at the Nokia Theatre at LA Live on July 30, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.


by BEN THOMPSON / NBC Charlotte

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Posted on June 4, 2013 at 6:32 PM

Updated Wednesday, Dec 4 at 8:18 PM

CONCORD, N.C. -- Executives from ESPN and the X Games walked away seeming impressed after spending Tuesday touring Charlotte Motor Speedway and its facilities. The cable sports channel is considering Charlotte as host city for its 2014 X Games. 

Most of Tuesday's site survey was closed to the media.  But executives were given test drives around the speedway's track in front of cameras and spoke to the press briefly about their impressions.

"The survey was great. The facilities offer quite a bit. Lots of built-in infrastructure. Lots of seating. For the type of event we produce, the dragstrip is pretty unique.  The actual venue lay out is pretty optimum for what we typically produce," said Tim Reed, Senior Director of Content Development for the X Games.

But the ESPN executives cautioned that each bidding city has it own set of advantages & disadvantages.  Chicago, Austin, and Detroit are also competing for the games.

Track officials and Concord's business community feel confident about their ability to lure the X Games.

"I think this event, because of its extreme nature, with that adrenaline element, just like the races, it makes it a great fit for our area," said Julie Conforth with Cabarrus County Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Outside the venues, members of the greater Charlotte's skateboarding community gathered, hoping to show the executives the fan base the exists here.

"You have a tremendous support system here in Charlotte, North Carolina," said Vic Wareny, owner of University area business called "Skate Twerp," which sells family-friendly skate gear.

Aside from the tracks, those trying to lure the X Games to Charlotte also tout the infrastructure already in place for races like restaurants and hotels.

"I feel like Charlotte is the center of all good things, that can bring it here.  You've got infrastructure. restaurants, you've got it all here."

X Games officials have already visited the Chicago and Detroit sights, and are planning to visit Austin Wednesday.  They plan to make a decision by the end of June.