Laguna Seca confirms new management team

Image by Barry Cantrell/LAT

Laguna Seca confirms new management team


Laguna Seca confirms new management team


WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca has confirmed its new management team, headed by new President and General Manager John Narigi in charge of the the County of Monterey’s 542-acre multi-purpose complex that includes the racetrack.

The management team consists of individuals who are deeply versed in all areas of the facility and its major events. “It is important to the owners and I that a knowledgeable and skilled team assume the helm of their departments,” said Narigi, who comes to WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca after 40-plus years in in the hospitality sector, where he oversaw numerous turnarounds that took major underperforming properties into profitable ventures. “This is the best team in the business and each person has the passion for the facility, our events and series, track renters, sponsors, campers, hospitality clients and for every guest who enters to enjoy this world-renowned treasure.

“My priority is to invigorate the team and guide them by adapting sound business practices that will ensure WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca will deliver on our promise to everyone of a world-class experience,” Narigi continued. “This includes enhancing the family experience with activities that will support the on-track racing action.”

Returning to WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca after seven months in San Diego is Barry Toepke, who becomes Director of Marketing and Communications and the event manager for the annual Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion, which is one of the pillars of Monterey Classic Car Week held each August. Toepke spent 10 years internally at Laguna Seca managing communications and historic racing and was integral in growing the event’s popularity. He first became involved in the historic racing event in 1989.

The full team (in alphabetical order):

  • Matt Brady, Track Manager
  • Brandy Falconer, Communications Manager
  • Steve Fields, Sr. VP of Sales
  • Rick Garcia, Director of Facilities
  • Mark Mathe, Director of Operations
  • Kathy Muller, Retail Manager
  • Lisa Saclayan, Ticket Manager
  • Jeanie Sumners, Marketing Manager
  • Aaron Tharpe, Director of Sales and Sponsorships
  • Barry Toepke, Director of Marketing and Communications
  • Judy Varley, Track Rental Coordinator

“I am incredibly proud of the entire team who has shown immense passion and dedication to WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca and in their desire to work as a team to think out of the box and work toward exceeding all guests’ expectations,” Narigi added. “The County of Monterey has entrusted us to bring about a positive change after it became evident new leadership was needed to ensure today’s visitors and the generations who will follow are able to enjoy everything this facility has to offer, whether it is the races, the year-round RV and tent camping, festivals or specialized corporate hospitality venues that are entirely unique to Monterey County and beyond.”