Stay-home stories: Bradley Gorringe & Indoor Kart Racing

Janae Wilkerson Articles, Coronavirus Leave a Comment

Indoor Kart Racing owner Bradley Gorringe points out, “Rent on our building is close to $20,000 per month. With no cash flow, that’s coming out of my pocket. We could lose everything we own.” Bradley closed his go-kart racing track and laid off his 15 employees on March 19th, before the governor’s shut-down order. “We wanted to be good social citizens,” he explains. “We were hoping the Paycheck Protection Program loan would allow us to rehire them, but there’s been no assistance.”

Bradley and his wife applied for the loan through their bank, and three days later heard the program was out of funds. The bank said they’re “in the queue for the second round of money.” Bradley had a similar experience when the family applied for a federal disaster loan. He states, “We spent eight hours on the phone one day, and when we finally talked to someone, they said that if we wait two or three weeks, we might hear something back.”

Bradley had looked forward to reopening Indoor Kart Racing on May 1, which he thought was Governor Little’s plan. Bradley says, “We’ve been working on our plan to reopen and keep people safe. In my opinion, go-kart racing can be as safe as Lowes, Home Depot, or any of those stores: They’re crammed full of people. We thought we could reopen. It’s pretty hard to work from home if you’re running go-karts,” he quipped.

“But then,” Bradley notes, “Governor Little laid out a map for reopening certain businesses, and we weren’t on it, so we can’t.” Bradley wonders if his reopening date will get pushed back again — “It’s got everybody running scared. It’s a frustrating time right now.”

“I’m afraid of the repercussions if I have to remain shut down … When we do open, are people going to come in and race, or will they be too scared?” Bradley laughs, “I’ve seen the lines at grocery stores and coffee booths, so I know people aren’t too scared to go shopping! We have our fingers crossed that things will return to normal. We won’t know until it happens.”