LONG POND Pocono Raceway was honored Monday at a ceremony in the rotunda of the state Capitol in Harrisburg for the economic impact that the raceway provided Pennsylvania in 2013. Gov. Tom Corbett and leaders of the state senate and house of representatives acknowledged the $257,500,000 economic stimulus resulting from the events held at the raceway last year.

Brandon Igdalsky, Pocono Raceway president and CEO, said, "I am thrilled to stand here in the Capitol Rotunda and share some great news with our partners in Pennsylvania: Gov. Corbett and his administration, the Pennsylvania General Assembly, and most importantly, Pennsylvania citizens. I am proud to announce that in 2013 Pocono Raceway generated $257.5 million in income and created 2,752 jobs."

Pocono Raceway has been operating since 1968, with INDYCAR races starting in 1971 and NASCAR races beginning in 1974. Racing has changed a lot since then in terms of the marketplace and what fans want and expect from each race. Pocono Raceway has been strategically partnering with the state to ensure that our asset in Long Pond is maximized as much as possible.

"I want to thank Gov. Corbett and the Pennsylvania Legislature for taking steps to ensure that not only Pocono Raceway, but Pennsylvania in general, is a great place to visit. They are making investments in infrastructure and providing for opportunities for our facility to flourish. Our fans benefit from the transportation funding package, which provides for safer roads and bridges to get to our track. Charities benefit from a change in the local option small games of chance law that allows our track to host 50/50 raffles for their causes," Igdalsky said.

"Our fans also benefit from our partnerships with the Department of Community and Economic Development and the Office of Tourism, the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, the Fish and Boat Commission and the Pennsylvania Lottery as we work to promote all that Pennsylvania has to offer to our race fans.

"I am happy about how far we've come and where we're going, and can't wait to see what else Pocono Raceway can do for Pennsylvania citizens in the coming years," Igdalsky said.

The economic impact analysis, prepared by East Stroudsburg University, shows exactly what Pocono Raceway means to tourism in the Pennsylvania. More than 55 percent of the Raceway fans come from out of state, some coming as far as out of country, and visit for three to five days. They fill hotels rooms, camp, fish, shop, gamble, dine and enjoy everything northeast Pennsylvania has to offer. The Raceway generated more than $15 million in state tax revenue and put another $15 million into the local economy.

This is in addition to generating more than $1 million in hotel tax revenue that is earmarked to support tourism promotion and advertising statewide by the DCED and in northeast Pennsylvania by the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau.

NASCAR and INDYCAR officials took part in the ceremony, and each acknowledged the importance of Pocono Raceway to their respective organizations. Key members of Corbett's administration, business leaders, members of the Chamber of Commerce and other dignitaries were invited guests.

Brandon Igdalsky and Nick Igdalsky, raceway executive vice president and COO, were introduced on the Senate and House floors before the entire General Assembly. Resolutions submitted by Sen. Dave Argall and Rep. Mike Carroll stated the importance of the relationship between Pocono Raceway and the state.

Link to the complete Economic Impact Study: