The Food City 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race, held at Bristol Motor Speedway, was delayed for three hours last night, due to the weather. When the race was stopped, Matt Kenseth was in the lead.
The start of the race was delayed for two hours. NASCAR was able to dry the track in 45 minutes using its year-old Air Titan drying machine. However, the racers only got in 124 laps before it was delayed again.
The Bristol Motor Speedway general manager Jerry Caldwell addressed the forecasted weather conditions on Saturday, March 15. He said that they had made arrangements for the race to be held on Monday if the weather forced them to. “By now nearly everyone has seen Sunday’s weather forecast and expressed questions regarding plans,” Caldwell said.
“NASCAR has a nearly 70-year history of working with tracks to get races in on the scheduled date. In Bristol Motor Speedway, we have a track that dries in less than an hour, equipment here to do it and lights that allow us to go well into the evening,” he explained. “We are very hopeful and fully intend to run the Food City 500 [Sunday]. If by chance that does not happen, we are prepared to race Monday at noon. But that is a backup plan we hope to not need.”
Luckily, they were able to get the track dried, and the race completed. Carl Edwards pulled out a win, followed by Ricky Stenhouse Jr., and Aric Almirola. Tony Stewart, Marcos Ambrose, Denny Hamlin, Jeff Gordon, Kasey Kahne, Brian Vickers, and Kyle Larson rounded out the top ten. For complete results, click here.
When a caution was called with 77 laps remaining, Edwards crew chief Jimmy Fennig made the call to have Edwards stay on the track rather than going to pit road. “I thought when Jimmy said we’re going to stay out, I thought, ‘Well, that’s a good idea,”‘ Edwards said. “And then nobody stayed out around us, and I thought, ‘Oh boy, that might not be the greatest thing.’ It turned out to be perfect.”
Image via Wikimedia Commons