International Speedway recently reported smaller-than-expected profit growth for the second quarter as expensive gasoline and a weak economy kept many fans away from the tracks. Frequently they drive long distances to races.

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Race fans are putting the brakes on their spending, and that’s hurting International Speedway (ISCA).

The nation’s biggest racetrack owner owns or operates 13 tracks, including the iconic Daytona International Speedway, home of the Daytona 500.

But International Speedway recently reported smaller-than-expected profit growth for the second quarter as expensive gasoline and a weak economy kept many fans away from the tracks. Frequently they drive long distances to races.

Ticket revenue fell nearly 7 percent in the second quarter from the prior-year period, after rising 1.4 percent in the first quarter.

The weaker attendance also means lower sales of beer, hot dogs and other merchandise at its concession stands.

Looking ahead, advance-ticket sales are down in “the high single digits,” the company told analysts recently. But conditions may not be as bad as they seem, says Citi Investment Research analyst Gregory Badishkanian, who rates the stock “hold.”

The tough economy may have fans waiting closer to race day to buy their tickets.

International Speedway is also getting a bigger boost from its 50 percent stake in Motorsports Authentics, which sells race-themed apparel and collectibles.

The unit contributed nearly $3 million to profit in the quarter, after losing $294,000 for the company a year ago.