Saturday, March 16, 2013

Notes from the Carolinas

Rockingham, N.C. (April 14, 2013) - Kyle Larson dominated Sunday's North Carolina Education Lottery 200 at The Rock presented by Cheerwine, but had to hold off a charging Joey Logano in a green-white-checker finish to claim his first victory in the series.
"This means a lot to finally get a national (touring series) victory," said Larson, who led twice for 187 laps in the scheduled 200-lap race at the 1-mile track. "I was pretty nervous that last restart because I knew Joey was on a lot more newer tires than me. I'm not normally good on restarts. I've been trying to work hard on that and, thankfully, it paid off. I was able to beat him into (turn) one and hold on for the win."
The green-white-checker finish, which extended the race to 205 laps, was set up when Timothy Peters and Ryan Sieg crashed on the track's frontstretch with three laps remaining. After the yellow flag was displayed on lap 199, Ron Hornaday clipped Darrell Wallace Jr. in response to an earlier incident, turning him into the backstretch's outside wall. NASCAR is reviewing the incident.
When the race restarted on lap 204, Larson was leading and Logano was second. Larson produced an excellent restart while Logano lagged and that proved to be the difference as Larson defeated Logano by a mere 0.177 second.

Rockingham, N.C. (April 12, 2013) -  Once the rain cleared Friday afternoon, Chuck Barnes Sr. proved once again that he knows the fast way around Rockingham Speedway. 

The three-time Frank Kimmel Street Stock Nationals (FKSSN) Rockingham winner was the fastest qualifier in Friday afternoon's session and will lead the field to the green in their 100-lap portion of the FastTrack 175 Saturday afternoon. Chad Hall, Jason Calhoun, Willie Reynes and Alan Rich. 

In UARA-STARS Late Model Series action, Clay Rogers was the fastest in Friday afternoon's first practice session. Ty Dillon was fastest in the second session. Both drivers are also entered in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) race.

The UARA cars return to the track for qualifying on Saturday at 11:10 a.m. After their qualifying session, the NCWTS will take to the track for their opening practice at noon. The UARA 75-lap event will follow at approximately 2:00 p.m. NCWTS final practice will be from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. The street stocks will wind down Saturday's action with their 100-lap race at approximately 4:45 p.m.

In addition to the on-track action on Saturday, the NCWTS drivers will be signing autographs at the speedway from 10:15 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. There will also be a concert outside of turn two when the racing action ends for the day featuring Ty Brown, the Chris Lane Band and Hoss Howard Band.

Rockingham, N.C. (April 10, 2013) -  Since Motor Racing Network (MRN) isn't broadcasting from Rockingham Speedway until Sunday's North Carolina Education Lottery 200 at The Rock presented by Cheerwine and broadcasters Kyle Rickey and Dave Moody were coming to the track on Saturday, speedway president Andy Hillenburg decided to put the duo to work early.

Rickey and Moody will be waving the green flags to start the Fast Track 175 double header. Rickey will do the honors for the Frank Kimmel Street Stock Nationals (FKSSN) 100-lap portion and Moody will handle starting the 75-lap UARA-Stars race.

The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) will be making its second-annual trip to Rockingham Speedway for the North Carolina Education Lottery 200 at The Rock presented by Cheerwine. In last year's inaugural event, Sprint Cup veteran Kasey Kahne took the checkered flag despite starting at the rear of the field.

The NCWTS will practice on Saturday with qualifying and racing on Sunday, April 14.

DARLINGTON, S.C. (April 5, 2013) – The Lady in Black, as Darlington Raceway has been notably named for decades, will have a new face in 2013 as Paige Duke will serve as the track’s official “The Lady in Black” for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles’ Southern 500 race weekend on May 10-11.

Duke, a former Miss Sprint Cup and current model, will be present during the race weekend and other track events throughout the year proudly wearing a black fire suit and representing Darlington Raceway. Her local ties are in the state of South Carolina as she hails from nearby Lancaster, S.C., and is a graduate of Clemson University.

Rockingham, N.C. - Fans hoping to get to meet their favorite NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) drivers will have the opportunity to do so on Saturday, April 13 at Rockingham Speedway.

The speedway will hold a driver autograph session that morning from 10:15 a.m. until 11:15 a.m. by the famous rocks by the main entrance of the track.

The session will take place before the first NCWTS practice for the North Carolina Education Lottery 200 at The Rock presented by Cheerwine.

The autograph session is open to anyone holding a ticket for Saturday's or Sunday's races.

Mooresville, N.C. (March 27, 2013) – The Martin Truex Jr. Foundation (MTJF) has announced that Toyota has reached a two-year agreement to serve as the exclusive presenting sponsor for the annual Catwalk for a Cause fundraiser.

Proceeds from this year’s event will benefit the Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte. The event will be held May 15th from 6 to 9 p.m. at Michael Waltrip Racing in Cornelius, N.C.

“Toyota is honored to partner with such a successful event that will benefit many families and children in need,” said Les Unger, Toyota National Motorsports Manager. “Martin and Sherry Pollex do a tremendous job of giving back to the community with the Martin Truex Jr. Foundation, and this Catwalk for a Cause fundraiser in particular.  We are excited to be a part of this event.”

Truex drives the No. 56 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota for Michael Waltrip Racing (MWR) in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. He is in his fourth season driving a Camry for MWR.

The night’s pinnacle event is a New York style runway show with fashions provided by Lavendar, Avalilly’s and Fresh Boutiques, featuring the hottest designer labels for spring.   

Concord, N.C. (March 15, 2013) – Fans headed to the April 4-7 Food Lion AutoFair are in for a real treat as Charlotte Motor Speedway and Levy Restaurants have partnered to create the Elvis-themed Jailhouse Rock Café. The café features an eight-item menu highlighted by one of Elvis’ favorites, a grilled peanut butter and banana sandwich, fittingly named The King.

The menu features several foods named after the legendary singer’s top songs and serves as a complement to the Elvis display in the Showcase Pavilion. The display contains Elvis’ 1956 Lincoln Continental Mark II and several artifacts from his 1968 movie “Speedway,” which was filmed partly at CMS.

CONCORD, N.C. (March 15, 2013) – Construction is underway on six additional pit road suites at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Crews have begun pouring the concrete pylons which will support the new structure along pit road.

The suites are 11 feet above pit road and are as close as fans can get to the action, overlooking the race team pit boxes. 

The original suites, built in 2012, were sold out prior to last year’s NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race. The open-air, covered seating areas can accommodate up to 15 people and include exclusive access to the Winner’s Circle Lounge located adjacent to Victory Circle. The lounge includes a bar, meeting room, seating areas, televisions and restrooms.  

“Our goal is to bring fans to the 50-yard line of racing. The suites are at the epicenter of all of the excitement of the race and provide a place to sit and enjoy the experience, with easy access to the amenities of the Winner’s Circle Lounge,” said Dan Farrell, senior VP of corporate sales for CMS. “It’s like having a seat on the sidelines of an NFL game. These suites provide a bird’s eye view of all of the action on pit road.”

The new suites will be added on to the existing structure toward the Turn 1 end of pit road. Suite holders receive 15 tickets to each of eight NASCAR events and have the option to purchase catering for the suite. Farrell says four of the six new suites are already sold, and he expects a complete sellout within the next few weeks before the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race on May 18.

Rockingham, N.C. (March 13, 2013) - When Rockingham Speedway president Andy Hillenburg started making plans for April 14's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series North Carolina Education Lottery 200 at The Rock presented by Cheerwine, he was consumed with one thought.

"We started planning last April for this event," said Hillenburg, "and the one overriding theme was to find ways to make this year's race better for our fans. The entire staff, our sponsors and the competitors did a great job at last year's inaugural event, but we weren't content. It had to bigger and better in 2013."

To that end, the City of Rockingham and the speedway have brought in three bands instead of one to perform at the track on Saturday, April 13.

Kernersville, N.C.-based Chris Lane Band will take the stage at 6 p.m. following the UARA and Frank Kimmel Street Stock Nationals races. Ty Brown will follow at approximately 7:40 p.m. Headliner Hoss Howard Band will perform at approximately 9:15 p.m.

Admission is free to ticket holders for Saturday or Sunday's races.

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