More visitors came to Las Vegas this past March and spent more money than any other month in Las Vegas' 101-year history. No entity played a bigger role in that milestone than Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

The 2006 NASCAR Weekend in Las Vegas had a record $197 million impact on the state's economy, the greatest expenditure figure in the nine-year history of the event and an astounding 18.4-percent increase from 2005.
The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority's annual study revealed that the final number was $197,891,200, up from $167,127,800 in 2005. The numbers, a product of one-time expenditures, are based on interviews with race fans during the March 10-12 weekend and reflect the amount of money spent - both gaming and non-gaming - during the four-day event at LVMS.
"NASCAR Weekend has proven time and again to be an economic boon to Las Vegas and to Nevada," said Las Vegas Motor Speedway general manager Chris Powell. "This event has become one of the most anticipated stops on the NASCAR circuit for hundreds of thousands of people from all over the world. The increase in total expenditures from 2005 is phenomenal and is yet another example of the importance of this speedway to our state's economy. In the past two years, the economic impact has increased 37 percent, which also is an extraordinary number."
The study estimated approximately 94,875 visitors attended the race from outside Nevada.
The event weekend is estimated to have drawn more than 340,000 people through the gates at the speedway. The events included the UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 NASCAR
Nextel Cup event, the Sam's Town 300 NASCAR Busch Series race, Friday's qualifying day and two nights of the World of Outlaws.

According to the economics research department at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, each dollar brought into the area creates a little more than one additional dollar. Based on UNLV's analysis, the event generated more than $400 million as the money cycled throughout the Nevada economy.
There are varying schools of thought on the domino effect of dollars tumbling through an economy.  Some economists theorize that a dollar spent can be re-spent as many as seven times in a community.  If that were the case, the NASCAR Weekend's impact on the state's economy would exceed $1.4 billion.

The NASCAR Weekend in Las Vegas is highly anticipated each year by the business community. Flights increased dramatically at McCarran International Airport in the month of March, and many hotels and casinos reported record revenues for the quarter ending March 31. In addition, each race fan's expenditures increased 27 percent from $1,682 in 2005 to $2,085 in 2006.
Powell said the speedway would continue to have a huge effect on the community and state.

"In terms of its impact on this community, the NASCAR Weekend at LVMS now ranks near the top with many of the major conventions and trade shows that visit Las Vegas every year," Powell said.  "We want to make this event bigger and better each year. It takes a collective effort between the speedway, local government and our business community to maintain that constant growth."

The speedway is undergoing a major renovation process that will make for a faster and more competitive racing surface and create a fan-interactive garage area that will separate LVMS from all other speedways.

"With the changes we are making to the speedway, there is no question that LVMS is setting the pace for all other racing facilities," Powell said. "This is just another step in making it a first-class facility and making our annual NASCAR Weekend one of the most desired motorsports events for fans from around the world."

Following is a breakdown of the growing impact of NASCAR Weekend at LVMS on the state's economy since 2001.

Year      Total expenditures   Increase
2001      $97,163,700                N/A
2002      $121,425,500              25 %
2003      $133,451,000              9.9 %
2004      $142,673,400              6.9 %
2005      $167,127,800             17.1 %
2006      $197,891,200             18.4 %

Las Vegas Motor Speedway is a subsidiary of Speedway Motorsports, a leading marketer and promoter of motorsports entertainment in the United States. In addition to LVMS, the Company owns and operates the following premiere speedways: Atlanta Motor Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, Infineon Raceway, Lowe's Motor Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway.  The Company provides souvenir merchandising services
through its SMI Properties subsidiary, and manufactures and distributes smaller-scale, modified racing cars through its 600 Racing subsidiary. The Company also owns Performance Racing Network (PRN), which broadcasts syndicated motorsports programming to more than 725 stations nationwide including XM Satellite and For more information, visit the Company's website at    

Top 10 things to do with $197 million

1. Pay Bill Gates' taxes for one year.

2. Purchase a suite at Las Vegas Motor Speedway through the year 5289.

3. Can buy 5,123,537 shares of Speedway Motorsports stock.

4. Buy every seat at Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the next 10 NASCAR races.

5. Fully sponsor 13 different teams on the NASCAR Nextel Cup circuit.

6. Buy 2,279 Dodge Vipers.

7. Buy 394,000 Goodyear racing tires.

8. Buy 62,539,682 gallons of gasoline.

9. Pay the President's salary for the next 490 years.

10. Buy eight Gulfstream jets like the one Jeff Gordon uses.