“Growing Up In A Fast-Paced World: Getting to Know Our CEO, Nick Igdalsky”
Written by: Chrissi Wolosz – Coordinator, Marketing Communications
Pocono Raceway (May 7, 2020) – Nick Igdalsky, grandson of Drs. Joseph “Doc” Mattioli and Rose Mattioli, took over the operations of Pocono Raceway when becoming CEO nearly 3 years ago. As you may imagine, his journey starts way before that – over 30 years to be exact. Growing up a grandson in the Mattioli family, racing was in his DNA. Looking back on the rich history and childhood memories of being at the track, Nick’s fondest memories are “spending the summers with my grandparents.” Now there is more than one story to be told about each summer but when discussing it together, he vividly remembers spending those summer nights in what is now a converted office building.
Nick was introduced to the track at infancy and got right to work on the farm at the young age of 12. As a young kid wanting to help around the facility, the very first job Nick was tasked with was maintenance work. Anything from lawn work to pumping sewage, Nick was on it. He continued to work for his family in different ventures as he got older.
Starting as a young teen, his passion for racing grew more and more inside of him eventually leading him to his own start behind the wheel. Down the road from Pocono Raceway is a racing school where Nick learned the fundamentals of racing. An idol of his was Cale Yarborough, a short-statured underdog and NASCAR Hall of Famers, and someone Nick could see himself being. He had gotten a later start than most kids but that was no obstacle to him. Nick’s ambitions lead him to more opportunities behind the wheel. He quickly climbed the ladder in different series at various tracks, one being South Boston Speedway. His rookie season was successful to say the least and benchmarked the beginning with no end in sight. He has raced in the ARCA Menards Series, Grand AM Series (now IMSA) and dabbled in other stock car racing Series throughout his career.
When it was time for college, Nick found North Carolina to be home while attending Elon College. Here he would meet his life-long friend and right-hand man, Ben May. After completing a dual degree in Marketing and Management, Nick returned home to work full time for the track, continuing to race when he could. With maintenance work already under his belt, Nick gained experience in every other aspect of his grandparents’ business continuously learning what needed to be done to run a successful motorsport facility.
In early 2000’s, South Boston Speedway (SoBo) became under ownership of the Mattioli family. He moved down South to manage the operations at the Virginia track for a while before becoming the CEO for South Boston as well, a track he knew all too well. When asked how he manages both locations, he gives all credit to the trustworthy people overseeing the day to day at each track, Ben (May) President at Pocono Raceway and Cathy (Rice) General Manager at South Boston Speedway. With trusty confidants like Ben and Cathy, Nick has been able to take on new opportunities within the community – Sunset Hill Shooting Range located in the Pocono Mountains. This was something Nick never foresaw but when the business opportunity was there for new ownership, he claimed it. It is part of the Mattioli family to give back to the community and be a contributor to the Pocono Mountains flourishment. Nick carries that value in himself and sees no limit in sight as to what can be done next.
Even with operation multiple ventures, he still has time for his family. With Brandy, his wife of 10 years and two young daughters, Nick enjoys calling the Pocono Mountains home. White water rafting, kayaking, fishing and all water sports and activities are on top of his lists to enjoy in this area. And of course, he enjoys the racing in the Pocono Mountains. It is an incredible sight to see on race weekend when the Mattioli and Igdalsky families are all together. Like Nick, his daughters and other young family members are growing up at the track and one day they will continue the legacy of Doc and Dr. Rose.
During those race weekends, Nick points out always getting a euphoric feeling when the ARCA Menards Series takes to the track because that is where his success began for him. The roaring of the engines, the rush of adrenaline for the flag to go green – all of it brings him back to a great place. Those moments will always be cherished. After a long life in the racing world, there was never a moment in his life where he thought racing was not for him.
This is what he grew up in – This is what he knows – This is what he loves.