DARLINGTON RACEWAY NEWS ARCHIVE

  • Darlington Raceway could keep tax money if seats are widened: A bill that could allow Darlington Raceway to watch out for both its fans' bottoms and the track's bottom line is headed to the South Carolina Senate. The Senate Finance Committee passed a proposal Tuesday that would allow the track to keep its 5 percent tax on tickets even if the speedway's capacity falls below 60,000 – in the event bigger seats are one day needed to accommodate fans. Darlington Raceway currently seats 62,000. But track president Chris Browning says the speedway is considering widening its 18-inch wide seats as an amenity for the crowds. "One of the things a lot of stadiums are doing is widening seats to make fans more comfortable," he explained. But he said reducing seating capacity because of bigger seats has tax implications. The bill before lawmakers would delete the reference to the track's 60,000 fans while allowing it to keep the tax proceeds as a NASCAR sanctioned motor speedway that plays host to at least one race a year of the preeminent NASCAR racing series.(Associated Press/Augusta Chronicle)(4-11-2013)

  • Paige Duke will serve as "Lady in Black" at Darlington: 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. Besides her role serving as Miss Sprint Cup in 2010-11, Duke is the national spokesperson for Kruger Farms, an online outdoor outfitter in Minnesota, and was cast in the CMT hit show Sweet Home Alabama for two seasons in 2011 and 2012. She is also a model for various national campaigns and works as a veterinary technician in Lancaster.(Darlington Raceway)(4-6-2013)

  • Sport Clips, VFW return as Darlington Nationwide race sponsors: Longtime partners, Sport Clips Haircuts and the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW), announce the return of the VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200 Nationwide Series event at Darlington Raceway on Friday, May 10, 2013. It is the second consecutive year the two organizations have partnered to sponsor the Nationwide Series event at Darlington. Sport Clips and the VFW will continue to use their NASCAR partnership to raise awareness about the struggles many military families are facing and the VFW's mission to support active-duty military, veterans and their families. As the "Official Haircutter" of the VFW, Sport Clips has donated almost $2 million to the organization's Operation Uplink free call days program through its annual "Help a Hero" campaign. Since the first contribution of more than $80,000 was made in 2007, Sport Clips' donations have increased annually. The company's most recent donation of a record-breaking $500,000 was presented to the VFW at the national headquarters on December 10, 2012.(Darlington Raceway)(3-29-2013)

  • South Carolina Education Lottery issues NASCAR ticket: The South's love affair with racing is now celebrated on an instant ticket from the South Carolina Education Lottery. FAN-tastic!, an officially licensed NASCAR game, is on sale at lottery retailers statewide. FAN-tastic!, with a top prize of $100,000, offers racing fans a second-chance opportunity to win Special Insider trips to Darlington Raceway or the Biggest Race in NASCAR. Tickets are $5. It's fitting for the Lottery to launch a racing-themed ticket and pay homage to Darlington Raceway, a part of the racing landscape of this state for more than six decades. An iconic image of cars racing out of the turn at the track known as "Too Tough to Tame" is the artwork for the FAN-tastic! ticket.(Darlington Raceway)(3-28-2013)

  • Darlington offers new hospitality option: A new turn-key hospitality option is available for race fans wanting a VIP experience when they attend either the NASCAR Nationwide Series 200 on May 10 or the Bojangles' Southern 500 on May 11 at Darlington Raceway. The Champions Club, housed in the former President's Suite in turn 3 of the Darlington infield, provides an all-inclusive experience for fans. Each Champions Club package consists of one VIP access pass, COLD garage access (Saturday only), a pass to attend pre-race driver introductions (Saturday only), catered meal and snacks, unlimited non-alcoholic Coke beverages and water, cash bar including beer, wine and mixed beverages, a souvenir program, Darlington Raceway branded gift and a lanyard. One Champions Club parking pass will also be provided for package orders of four or more. The Champions Club hospitality package is available for $110 per person on Friday or $185 per person on Saturday.(Darlington Raceway)(3-11-2013)

  • Darlington releases mobile app: With the ever-changing world of communication through technology, Darlington Raceway is giving its race fans more convenient and enhanced ways to obtain information about the track Too Tough To Tame with the launch of its new mobile app and redesigned DarlingtonRaceway.com website. The free mobile app, available for both iOS and Android users, will give fans the most up-to-date information on the track, which includes news, maps, social media, event information and more. Visit the iTunes App Store or Google Play to download the free app today using keyword search "Darlington Raceway". The new and improved DarlingtonRaceway.com will offer a more streamlined format that is easier to navigate and also feature Facebook and Twitter RSS feeds, showing the most up to date posts from the track.(Darlington Raceway)(3-9-2013)

  • Outshyne to perform prerace concert at Darlington: Pre-race entertainment for the May 11 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway just got kicked up a notch with the addition of a pre-race concert. Millstar Nashville recording artist, Outshyne, will perform at Darlington Raceway prior to driver introductions for the Bojangles' Southern 500 on May 11. The pre-race concert will begin at approximately 5 p.m. Outshyne's lead singer Waylon Owings will also perform the national anthem for the Bojangles' Southern 500. The latest album by Outshyne, "Startin' Over" debuted at #11 on the iTunes charts and the band's latest single "Dirt Road Romance" has been climbing the charts at a rapid pace. The South Carolina-based band is expected to take off in 2013 for greater heights in the country music industry.(Darlington Raceway)(3-7-2013)

  • Speeds up at Darlington tire test: #99-Carl Edwards and several other Sprint Cup stars gave the new, faster Gen-6 race car a thumbs-up after a Goodyear tire test Tuesday at Darlington Raceway. Edwards said the digital speedometer on his Ford Fusion hit 193 mph right before entering turn three, a typically unheard of speed at the ultra-tricky track. "Each time down, you want to watch and see what you're doing," he said. "But the fastest point is the point where the track needs your attention and your eyes are not supposed to be on that monitor. I saw 193 or something, but I can't look at it any longer before I have to look into the corner." #11-Denny Hamlin, #56-Martin Truex Jr., #27-Paul Menard and #42-Juan Pablo Montoya were also at Darlington for the daylong session. NASCAR teams have previously tested the car at Daytona International Speedway and Charlotte Motor Speedway. Edwards found the new machine to be faster and racers should expect better handling and tighter racing when the circuit returns to NASCAR's oldest superspeedway for the Southern 500 on May 11. A few laps around the track "Too Tough To Tame" in the new car and Truex was confident someone would shatter Darlington's record qualifying speed of 181.254 mph set by Kasey Kahne at the 2011 race.(Associated Press)(2-6-2013)

  • ISC reports dip in profits: International Speedway Corp. saw a year-over-year decline in both its 2012 fourth-quarter and full-year earnings and revenues, but the narrowing of the revenue decline for its core business operations to less than 1 percent has company officials encouraged. "We experienced leading signs of revenue stabilization this year," stated Lesa France Kennedy, ISC's chief executive officer, in both a news release and Thursday morning conference call with stock analysts. ISC, which operates Daytona International Speedway and a dozen other tracks around that country that host NASCAR races and other motorsports events, generated a net profit of roughly $54.6 million for its fiscal year, which ended Nov. 30, down from $69.4 million in fiscal 2011, and a fourth-quarter net profit of about $24.7 million, down from $26.5 million the same period the previous year. Its revenues totaled $612.3 million in 2012, down from $629.7 million in 2011, and in the fourth quarter it generated $189.4 million in sales, down from $191.9 million the same period the previous year. Kennedy said ISC had year-over-year increases in both revenues from broadcast fees, corporate sponsorships and food, beverage and merchandise sales at races, but "we continue to experience modest headwinds with admissions, not to the degree experienced in 2011, but enough to know we still have further inroads to make with our consumer."(full article at the Daytona Beach News-Journal)(1-25-2013)

  • Darlington Goodyear Tire test open to public: On Tuesday, Feb. 5, Darlington RAceway will host a Goodyear Tire Test, which will feature the Gen-6 racecar. Participating in the test will be NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers #99-Carl Edwards, #11-Denny Hamlin, #56-Martin Truex Jr., #27-Paul Menard and #42-Juan Pablo Montoya. The test, which will be held from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., is FREE and open to the public. Darlington Raceway will open two sections of the Colvin Grandstand on the backstretch of the track for fans to watch the test throughout the day and witness the first laps of the Gen-6 car on the high banks of the track Too Tough To Tame. If fans enjoy the new Gen-6 car testing at Darlington, they will have the opportunity to visit the Darlington ticket office that day and receive a special gift and pricing on tickets for the Bojangles' Southern 500. Fans can also get their picture taken with Darlington's new Chevy Camaro pace car, which will be located next to the ticket office. The Darlington gift shop and stock car museum will be open from 10 a.m – 5 p.m. that day. An adult admission price for the museum will be just $3 for that day only. Fans need to use the Gate 6 entrance to the track off of Highway 151. The parking lot is located next to the track's administration building and certain sections of the Colvin Grandstand on the backstretch will be open for public viewing. Times of the test are subject to change by Goodyear. A rain date of Wednesday, Feb. 6 has been scheduled if there is a postponement due to inclement weather. Tickets to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 on May 11 and Nationwide Series 200 on Friday, May 10 are on sale now! Remember, kids 12 and under are half off for the Bojangles' Southern 500 and FREE for the Nationwide Series 200 in general admission sections. Visit www.DarlingtonRaceway.com or call 866-459-7223 for tickets.(Darlington Raceway)(1-24-2013)

  • Darlington Raceway's Toy Drive Generates over $3000: With the generosity of its fans and community supporters, Darlington Raceway's Toys for Tots Fundraiser & Toy Drive raised over $3,000 worth of toys and cash donations, guaranteeing many children in the Pee Dee area will have a gift to open on Christmas Day this year. The Toys for Tots Fundraiser & Toy Drive at Darlington Raceway is the largest single-day collection event in the Pee Dee area and has raised more than $12,000 for the local U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots program since 2010.(Darlington Raceway)(11-20-2012)

  • Tickets in sale for May races at Darlington: Tickets for Darlington Raceway's NASCAR Nationwide Series 200 and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 on May 10-11, 2013, are on sale to the public. Darlington will continue to offer great pricing for all of its events in 2013 with adult tickets to the Bojangles' Southern 500 starting at just $35. The track Too Tough to Tame will also continue its youth and military ticket programs:
    · Youth Tickets – Darlington Raceway will continue to offer tickets for our fans age 12 and under at half-price in all reserved grandstands at each of our NASCAR events in 2013. Youth 12 and under are admitted FREE in Wallace Grandstand for the NASCAR Nationwide Series 200 (wristband required).
    · Military Tickets – Military members with an active duty or retired military ID will pay just half-price for grandstand seating at all Darlington events. During the Bojangles' Southern 500 pre-race ceremonies, military members will be encouraged to stand so that they can be honored and recognized by Darlington Raceway.
    Also on sale are two all-inclusive hospitality options, the Darlington Stripe Zone (Bojangles' Southern 500 race day) and T4 Zone (NASCAR Nationwide Series 200 race day). Each hospitality package will give fans a VIP experience when they visit Darlington. Fans that would like to camp during the Bojangles' Southern 500 weekend can purchase a tent or RV site in one of Darlington's seven campgrounds. Additional admissions for any of the infield camping areas can be purchased for $100 each while youth 12 and under are admitted for free with an adult. Tickets to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 on May 11 and NASCAR Nationwide Series 200 on Friday, May 10 are on sale. Fans can purchase tickets to both events by visiting www.DarlingtonRaceway.com or by calling 866-459-7223.(Darlington Raceway)(11-17-2012)

  • Darlington to host NASCAR race for 64th year: Darlington Raceway has announced that the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series will return to the track Too Tough to Tame on Mother's Day weekend, May 10-11, 2013. The 2013 Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 will mark the 64th consecutive year of NASCAR racing at the Lady in Black, dating back to 1950. Tickets for 2013 events will go on sale to the public beginning Friday, Nov. 16, with prices as low as $35 for the Bojangles' Southern 500. Kids 12 and under are free in general admission on Friday and half-price for any reserved seat on either event day.(Darlington Raceway)(9-24-2012)

  • Bridget Holloman celebrates 30 years at Darlington Raceway: Anytime a person can have a 30-year anniversary in life, it's worth noting. Bridget Holloman, the longtime Darlington Raceway executive assistant, did just that on Thursday, Aug. 9, by celebrating 30 years at the track Too Tough to Tame. Holloman has many memories at Darlington Raceway since her first day as a full-time employee in 1982. The Darlington native and current Hartsville, S.C. resident has witnessed many great NASCAR moments at the Lady in Black, most notably local favorite Cale Yarborough winning his fifth Southern 500 in 1982, Bill Elliott capturing the Winston Million by winning the 1985 Southern 500, Ricky Craven beating out Kurt Busch to win the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 by .002 seconds in 2003, and the track celebrating its 60th year of racing in 2009, to name a few. She has worked for six different presidents while at Darlington (Barney Wallace 1982; Red Tyler 1983-1991; Woody McKay 1991-1993; Jim Hunter 1993-2001; Andrew Gurtis 2001-2004; Chris Browning 2004-present). She also serves as the executive secretary for the National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA), a position she has held since 1991 (Darlington Raceway)(8-10-2012)

  • Cargill to Host "Darlington Signature Burger Event" Darlington Raceway and Cargill Beef are asking fans to submit recipes for the "Track Too Tough to Tame's" new signature hamburger. Fans will submit their favorite and most unique hamburger recipes, with the selected entries being prepared by Miss Sprint at an old fashioned race-day cook out on Saturday at the track prior to the Bojangles' Southern 500. The burgers will then be judged and a winner chosen by track president Chris Browning. "I'm excited for the opportunity to select the winner of this contest and see what kind of hamburger recipes our fans come up with," Browning said. "A hamburger is a staple with any camping or tailgating experience at a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race weekend at Darlington. As we all know, there are many different styles and varieties of hamburgers that are unique so it will be fun to see on Saturday what our fans can bring to the table." Fans can submit recipes to burgers@keystonemarketing.net. The winners will receive a family four-pack tailgate package at either next year's Darlington race, or the fall race at Martinsville Speedway on October 28, 2012. On Friday, May 11 the top-20 recipes from the submissions will be selected and sent to Cargill to narrow down to the final four. Then on Saturday, May 12 at 12:30pm, Miss Sprint will prepare the top-four burger recipes for the judges and the winner will become the new "signature hamburger" of Darlington Raceway. The event will take place in the infield behind the west concession stand, just inside Gate 11B.(Darlington Raceway)(5-9-2012)

  • Darlington Week in South Carolina: The week of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 has once again been named "Darlington Raceway Week in South Carolina" after the South Carolina House of Representatives and Senate passed a concurrent Resolution. "This is a tremendous honor for everyone at Darlington Raceway," said Darlington Raceway President Chris Browning. "The Bojangles' Southern 500 brings people to South Carolina from all 50 states and several foreign countries and it is a great time to showcase our state with a worldwide television audience watching." The famed track's 63-year history is a major reason that the South Carolina Senate and House of Representatives passed the concurrent Resolution, led by state Senator Gerald Malloy, D-Hartsville.(Darlington Raceway)(5-6-2012)

  • Casey Weston to perform National Anthem at Darlington: Casey Weston, Nashville-based recording artist and former finalist on the popular TV show, "The Voice," will perform the National Anthem for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway on Saturday, May 12. Weston, originally from Naples, Fla., began her performing career six years ago with both original songs and covers. Both originals and covers were well received and her audiences continue to grow. In 2009, Weston released her first album, 10 songs on the self-titled "Casey Weston." Following the successful release of her first album, Weston auditioned on the popular show "The Voice" and was one of eight finalists in the inaugural season for the TV show sensation. Following her success on the "The Voice" Weston continues to stay in touch with her friend and coach Adam Levine, front man for Maroon 5. Tickets to the upcoming NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 on May 12 and Nationwide Series VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200 on Friday, May 11 can be purchased by calling 866-459-7223 or by visiting DarlingtonRaceway.com. Remember, kids 17 and under are half off for the Bojangles' Southern 500 and FREE for the VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200.(Darlington Raceway)(5-2-2012)

  • A Taste of Darlington: A Taste of Darlington will return to Darlington Raceway on Thursday evening, April 19 from 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series garage area. The annual culinary event benefits the Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association (DDRA) and features some of the best cooks in the Darlington area. The event is usually attended by 500-700 local community members that enjoy great food and beverage at the annual festivities. For more than 20 years A Taste of Darlington has been a marquee event on the social calendar in the community. This year's event will feature 15 grillers preparing main courses and over 15 stations featuring hors d'oeuvres and desserts. Walk-up tickets are available the day of the event for $30 each. The event is only open for guests 21 years of age or older. You can keep up with all of the latest news from Darlington Raceway at DarlingtonRaceway.com. Tickets for events at Darlington can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway)(4-19-2012)

  • Darlington Raceway to honor Yarborough: With Cale Yarborough now having been inducted into the third class of the NASCAR's Hall of Fame, Darlington Raceway will celebrate and honor his achievements during the upcoming Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 race weekend on May 11-12. Darlington and the NASCAR Hall of Fame are partnering on a special ticket offer for fans, which will include an exclusive meet-and-greet and autograph session with the NASCAR legend and hometown hero from Timmonsville, S.C. For $59, each fan will receive a ticket in the Pearson grandstand for the Bojangles' Southern 500, a ticket to the NASCAR Hall of Fame (redeemable throughout the season), a 2012 Hall of Fame Yearbook and the opportunity to get up-close-and-personal with Yarborough on race day. The package is a savings of $36 if individual tickets were purchased for each venue separately. Packages can be purchased by calling 866-459-7223 or by visiting www.DarlingtonRaceway.com/congratscale. "Congratulations to Cale on his induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Cale is very deserving of his induction and his commitment and dedication to the growth and success of NASCAR and stock car racing is unparalleled," Darlington president Chris Browning said. "To have a hometown hero like Cale have success at the sports greatest level is wonderful for our state. We are proud of the fact that he still calls his native Timmonsville home and Darlington Raceway his hometown track." Yarborough will be on hand during the Bojangles' Southern 500 race weekend participating in various activities, including being honored during pre-race ceremonies for the track's 109th Sprint Cup race. Yarborough is from Timmonsville, just 15 miles from The Lady in Black, is a local hero to race fans of all generations who call Darlington County home, where they witnessed one of the greatest stock car drivers of his time win five Southern 500 races from 1968-1982.(Darlington Raceway)(4-7-2012)

  • Darlington offers new Too Tough to Tailgate Zone: Tailgating is a big part of the culture that race fans enjoy each and every time they visit Darlington Raceway. To accommodate the ever-growing demand for tailgating prior to the track's events, the raceway is offering a new area outside turn two, the Too Tough to Tailgate Zone, specific for fans who are tailgating prior to the Bojangles' Southern 500 on Saturday, May 12. For $50 per spot, fans will receive a 20x20 space in the Tailgate Zone, big enough to accommodate one passenger vehicle, a pop-up tent, tables, chairs and a grill. There are no limitations to how many guests can tailgate at the space. Admission to the Bojangles' Southern 500 is not included in the price. Tickets to the race must be purchased when you order your tailgating spot in order to obtain admission. Additionally, the Darlington Raceway ticket office hours are changing to accommodate race fans that might not be able to purchase their tickets during normal business hours. From now until the race weekend, the ticket office will be open Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tickets to the upcoming NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 and Nationwide Series VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200 can still be purchased anytime at DarlingtonRaceway.com.(Darlington Raceway)(2-27-2012)

  • Special Drive to End Hunger Ticket at Darlington Raceway: Race fans who are interested in supporting #24-Jeff Gordon in AARP's and AARP Foundation's Drive to End Hunger campaign and in turn receive a special opportunity to participate in a 15-minute question and answer session with the popular driver, Darlington Raceway has just the ticket. Darlington Raceway is offering a special AARP Drive to End Hunger ticket package for the upcoming NASCAR Sprint Cup Bojangles' Southern 500 race on Saturday, May 12. For a special price of $124, each package will include a ticket to the Bojangles' Southern 500, hospitality in the Drive to End Hunger tent, which includes food and beverage, and the opportunity to participate in the 15-minute Q&A session with Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports. Packages can be purchased by visiting DarlingtonRaceway.com/drivetoendhunger or by calling 866-459-7223. Darlington and Americrown will donate to local food banks on behalf of Drive to End Hunger. AARP Foundation will work with Harvest Hope to receive the donations, which are expected to include bread, produce and other food items.(Darlington Raceway)(3-23-2012)

  • Bojangles to Sponsor Southern 500: Officials for Darlington Raceway and Bojangles announced a five-year deal Thursday at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, N.C for Bojangles to sponsor the Southern 500. The agreement means Bojangles will be offered at concession stands at the Darlington Raceway. Bojangles' menu is also available at four other tracks owned by International Speedway Corp. -- Daytona International Speedway, Talladega Motor Speedway, Martinsville Raceway and Richmond International Raceway. Darlington president Chris Browning says the agreement brings together two longtime Southern brands. The race had been sponsored by Showtime the past two years. The Bojangles' Southern 500 takes place Saturday, May 12. The Nationwide Series will race at Darlington on Friday, May 11.(wltx.com)(3-15-2012)

  • Darlington Raceway launches mobile web site: With nearly 95 percent of its race fans utilizing a cell phone for personal use, Darlington Raceway has launched its mobile web site, designed to keep fans updated with year-round news and race information for its upcoming NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Southern 500 race weekend on May 11-12. The mobile web site can be viewed by visiting DarlingtonRaceway.com from your Sprint Smartphone or other mobile devices including the iPhone and Blackberry. The new mobile web site gives fans access to the latest Darlington Raceway news and also provides the most recent race weekend information, including schedules, race day traffic and ticket information. Fans who are traveling to Darlington on race day can utilize the directions feature, which will map their route to the track with GPS navigation. The site also features a history section for fans to learn about the over 60 years of historical significance the track has played in NASCAR and to the state of South Carolina. Entry lists and starting lineups for the Southern 500 and Nationwide Series VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200 will also be posted on the mobile web site the week of the race.(Darlington Raceway)(3-6-2012)

  • Darlington and California security teams receive award: One of the top priorities for Darlington Raceway each year is to make sure its race fans, competitors, media and others attending the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Southern 500 race weekend every May have a safe and enjoyable experience when they visit the track "Too Tough to Tame." That priority did not go unnoticed by NASCAR as Darlington Raceway, and its security director Mike Richardson, were honored by receiving the sanctioning bodies "Excellence in Service Award" for its top notch security efforts for the 2011 season. Darlington was one of two tracks to accept NASCAR's highest honor for its security efforts along with Auto Club Speedway in California.(Darlington Raceway)(1-20-2012)

  • Darlington Raceway event help Toys for Tots: Fans of Darlington Raceway were in a giving mood this holiday season with several hundred participants donating a toy or $20 donation during the track’s Toys for Tots Drive recently. The event, which gave fans the opportunity to take their personal vehicles for laps around the historic Darlington Raceway for a donation, generated over $5,000 worth of toy and cash donations for the local U.S. Marines Toys for Tots program just in time for the holidays. The collection, the largest for the area’s U.S. Marines Toys for Tots program, will benefit five local counties surrounding the track, including Darlington, Dillon, Florence, Marion and Williamsburg, respectively.(Darlington Raceway)(12-19-2011)

  • Dennis Worden named Dir. Of Public Relations at Darlington: Darlington Raceway President Chris Browning announced the hiring of Dennis Worden as the track's Director of Public Relations. Worden begins his position immediately and will be responsible for coordinating all media relations efforts for NASCAR's original superspeedway. Worden spent the last 6 ½ years as the manager of public relations for Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Mich. He coordinated the media relations efforts for MIS, as well as maintaining the track's website and its video and photography needs, among other duties. Overall, he brings nearly 12 years of media relations experience to Darlington Raceway with past stops at Hillsdale College (Mich.), Wayne State University in Detroit, Mich. and the University of Texas in Austin. In addition to the hiring of Worden, Browning has also announced the promotion of Sarah Hill as the track's new Consumer Marketing Coordinator. Hill will serve in the track's public relations department overseeing all social media initiatives and coordinating marketing and e-mail campaigns, among other duties.(Darlington Raceway)(12-10-2011)

  • Southern 500 tickets on sale: Tickets for the 2012 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway go on sale to the general public beginning at 9:00 am on Friday, November 11. The NASCAR Nationwide Series and Sprint Cup Series are set to make their way to Darlington Raceway on Mother’s Day weekend, May 11-12, for their annual dance with the Lady in Black. Fans will notice several enhancements this year when ordering their tickets to Darlington Raceway, here are just a few:
    · Special Youth Pricing – Darlington Raceway will offer half-price reserved seats at each event for youths 17 and under. All general admission seating at the NASCAR Nationwide Series Darlington 200 will be free for youths age 17 and under.
    · Expanded Family Section Seating – Darlington Raceway has expanded its Family Section (alcohol and tobacco free seating) to include sections in all grandstands at the facility.
    · Special Military Discount – Military members will pay just half price for grandstand seating at all events. Military members taking advantage of the half-price seating offer for the Southern 500 will also receive a special camouflage Darlington Raceway t-shirt that they are encouraged to wear on race day. Military members will be asked to stand in their seating area during pre-race ceremonies and be recognized by the crowd.
    Tickets for events at Darlington can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway)(11-10-2011)

  • Darlington cancels plans for historic car festival: Darlington Raceway has cancelled plans for its historic fall racing festival. Track spokesman Jake Harris said a lack of entrants led Darlington officials to call off this year's event. The raceway has held the gathering at the track for the past three years with former prominent NASCAR personalities like Harry Gant, Ned Jarrett, David Pearson and Darrell Waltrip taking part. Those attending heard panel discussions from past NASCAR greats and had autograph sessions. Entrants also got to drive parade laps around the track. Harris said the track had generally gotten between 100 and 135 car entries during the first three years, but had only a little more than 40 so far this year. Harris said track leaders plan to regroup and return with the festival in 2012.(The Item)(8-20-2011)

  • ICS tracks to donate unused foods: Jeff Gordon, International Speedway Corporation's Chief Executive Officer Lesa France Kennedy and Darlington Raceway President Chris Browning announced that, on behalf of Drive to End Hunger, Americrown, ISC's food and beverage concessions operator, will donate all extra food items from the Sprint Cup Series races it services to the local food bank that serves the race track area. Drive to End Hunger is AARP and AARP Foundation's national effort to end hunger for older Americans. Donations are expected to include breads, produce and other food items and will be prepared for delivery by Americrown on Mondays following ISC's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races. The announcement follows ISC's donations at Daytona International Speedway of more than 7,000 pounds of excess food to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida following the 2011 Daytona 500; Talladega Superspeedway, which donated the extra food from its Aaron's Dream Weekend to the Community Food Bank of Central Alabama; and Richmond International Raceway Central which donated to the Central Virginia Food Bank.(ISC)(5-7-2011)

  • Ned Jarrett added to Darlington Legends Walk: Just days before his induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame, Ned Jarrett has been added to the Darlington Legends walk on the grounds of the famed 1.366-mile egg-shaped oval. "Ned Jarrett is known throughout NASCAR as one of the nicest and most talented drivers to ever compete on the Cup circuit," said Darlington Raceway President, Chris Browning. "Ned's two NASCAR Cup championships are an impressive feat as is his 14-lap victory in the 1965 Southern 500." Keeping with the historic racing theme present throughout the Darlington Raceway facility, each of the Darlington Legends Walk monuments resembles a Goodyear racing tire and old style pit board. Each monument is made of solid granite and marble and weighs nearly 2,300 pounds.(Darlington Raceway)(5-7-2011)

  • Bring-a-kid program celebrates 25 years at Darlington: Tommy DeWitt didn't quite know what he was getting himself into 25 years ago when he walked into the office of Red Tyler, then Darlington Raceway President, with a bold idea. DeWitt, who counted the track as a client of his pest control business, had an idea to fill the stands during the track's NASCAR Nationwide Series events. The idea: offer Nationwide race tickets and Christian fellowship to families through Darlington Raceway Ministries and the Welsh Neck Baptist Association. Tyler's response was immediate, "Let's do it." The program began small and grew, quickly. Managed by Tommy and his wife Linda since its inception in 1987, Bring-A-Kid has brought over 150,000 youths to Darlington Raceway for fellowship and racing. Each package includes a Nationwide Series race ticket, hot-dog, soda and a Christian themed program prior to the race. "Bring-A-Kid has grown to levels we could never have imagined back in 1987," said Linda Dewitt. "Tommy and I love being a part of this program and enjoy being a part of the kid's lives at Darlington Raceway."
    "Tommy and Linda have poured so much of their heart and souls into this program at Darlington Raceway," said track President, Chris Browning. "Each year when they call to place their ticket order we are amazed at the number of youth they are bringing to the track." The DeWitts will be honored during the pre-race ceremonies of the upcoming Royal Purple 200 at Darlington Raceway. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway)(5-5-2011)

  • Traveling Vietnam Memorial Wall on display at Darlington: Veterans and active members of America's armed services travel great distances and make great sacrifices to preserve and protect freedom and liberty and now race fans can honor these service men and women during the SHOWTIME Southern 500 weekend at Darlington Raceway. The American Veterans Traveling Tribute (AVTT) Traveling Wall will visit Darlington Raceway on Friday, May 6 from 9:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, May 7 from 10:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Fans are invited to attend a special wreath laying ceremony at the Wall at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, May 6. The Traveling Wall is an 80 percent scale version of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington D.C. Across its 370-foot length the wall contains every single name etched on the original. At its apex the memorial is an impressive eight-feet tall. The traveling wall was completed in early 1998 and began traveling that year. AVTT's traveling wall is the largest Wall replica traveling the United States. Race fans are encouraged to visit the display located in the display/vendor area behind the Tyler Tower grandstand. AVTT staff will be onsite and can assist fans in finding names of loved ones honored on the Traveling Wall display.(Darlington PR)(5-5-2011)

  • Updated amenities and entertainment options at Darlington: Race fans preparing to make the trip to Darlington Raceway for the NASCAR Nationwide Series Royal Purple 200 and Showtime Southern 500 this Mother's Day weekend will have plenty of updated amenities and entertainment options to look forward too at the track Too Tough To Tame. "Ensuring that our guests have the best possible experience while they are here is our number one priority," said Darlington Raceway, Chris Browning. "Everything we do focuses on that objective and we take pride in providing a unique, southern hospitality, experience."
    Fans can look forward to the following items when they converge on Darlington Raceway this Mother's Day weekend:
    · Way-finding Signage - Signage around the facility has been updated with new 3-D maps making it easier for fans to find their way around the 400-plus acre facility. Additionally, new parking lot marker signs have been added in the Petty Boulevard parking lot making it easier for fans to locate their vehicles.
    · Redesigned Event Program - The Darlington Raceway Official Souvenir Program has been redesigned with value-minded fans in mind! Now only $5, each program features the same great content as previous year's programs but also has several money saving coupons, including $10 off a purchase at Americrown souvenir stands.
    · Larger Cooler Size - Fans will now be permitted to bring in coolers measuring 14x14x14 (2,700 cubic inches) - six times larger than the size previously permitted. These coolers can typically hold up to 36 cans of Coca-Cola or other beverages. Coolers must be soft-sided and be free of wheels or telescoping handles but may have removable plastic liners.
    · Darlington Car Hauler Parade Presented by Nationwide Insurance - The Darlington Car Hauler parade returns for its seventh run from the Florence Civic Center, through the Darlington Square, before entering Darlington Raceway. Race Fest gets underway at 4:00 p.m. at the Civic Center and the trucks depart at 7:00 p.m.
    · Extended Darlington Raceway Museum and Pit Shop Hours - The Darlington Raceway Museum and Pit Shop will feature extended hours on race week and is stocked with all of the latest NASCAR gear from your favorite driver. Coupons from the Official Souvenir Program are valid on Pit Shop purchases. Take a stroll down memory lane while you are there with a visit to the Darlington Raceway Museum and National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame. For just $5 you can see some of the most fabled cars in NASCAR's 60-plus year history.
    Darlington Raceway, or the track Too Tough To Tame as it is known to many, is where the purest of NASCAR competition meets true southern hospitality. A NASCAR staple since 1950, Darlington Raceway has seen some of motorsports most talented drivers thunder to Gatorade Victory Lane. On Mother's Day weekend, May 6-7, 2011, NASCAR's biggest stars return to battle the track Too Tough To Tame in the Sprint Cup Series Showtime Southern 500® and Nationwide Series Royal Purple 200. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway)(5-5-2011)

  • Darlington Racway rededicates infield media center in honor of Jim Hunter: Darlington Raceway officials have rededicated the facility’s media center in honor of former track President and NASCAR Vice President of Corporate Communication, Jim Hunter. As part of the rededication, a plaque featuring a photo of the late Jim Hunter will be installed near the building’s main entrance. “Darlington Raceway meant so much to Jim, he looked forward to coming back to his home track each spring,” said Ann Hunter, wife of the late Jim Hunter. “I am happy that his memory will continue to live on for years to come at the track that was so special to him.” The Jim Hunter Media Center was built in 1997 and has served as the hub of media coverage of Darlington’s race weekends ever since. Tickets for this weeks races can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway)(5-3-2011)

  • Ticket Options for Darlington: The 2011 Showtime Southern 500 weekend at Darlington Raceway will be even more fan-friendly with special ticket pricing and new seating sections geared towards families and military service men and women. The new pricing structure will include discounted youth tickets for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Showtime Southern 500 for the first time in the track’s 60-plus year history. Fan-friendly ticketing options for 2011 include:
    New Youth Pricing – All youths, 17 and under, are free in general admission seating for the NASCAR Nationwide Series Royal Purple 200 and just half price in reserved seating for the Royal Purple 200 and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Showtime Southern 500.
    Expanded Family Sections –Family Sections are now located in each grandstand and are alcohol and tobacco free.
    New Military Pricing – Active and retired service men and women can purchase tickets to any Darlington Raceway event for just half price. Each Showtime Southern 500 military ticket order will receive a free Darlington Raceway camouflage t-shirt. All military members are encouraged to wear these shirts on Showtime Southern 500 race day in order to be recognized during pre-race ceremonies.
    Experience Nationwide Race Day as a VIP: New in 2011, the T4 Zone is VIP fan hospitality for the Royal Purple 200 and includes: admission to the T4 Zone tent from 2:00 pm to 7:00 pm, pre-race pit access, full meal and snacks, unlimited soda and water until scheduled race start, two beer coupons to all guests 21 years of age and older with valid ID, Darlington-branded gift and official souvenir program.
    Earn your Stripe in the Darlington Stripe Zone: The Stripe Zone returns in 2011 and as the ultimate Showtime Southern 500 VIP fan hospitality and includes: a pre-race pit pass, appearance from a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver, full meal and snacks, unlimited soda and water until scheduled race start, four beer coupons to all guests 21 years of age and older with valid ID, Darlington-branded gift, official souvenir program and live entertainment.
    For more information on ticket packages or to purchase tickets, call the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or go online at darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway)(4-21-2011)

  • Darlington weekend has positive impact on civic groups: The arrival of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in the Pee Dee Region of South Carolina means a big economic impact on the entire area. A 2009 study estimated the annual economic impact of Darlington Raceway at $54 million across the state. In addition to that $54 million impact, local civic groups also benefit greatly from Darlington Raceway. On a Sprint Cup race weekend the track and Americrown - the official concessionaire and souvenir provider of Darlington Raceway - employ more than 40 local civic groups to staff various posts around the track including concession stands, guest service tents, parking lots and entrance gates, among other things. For their time and effort these groups each receive a donation to help support their organization. In 2010 Darlington Raceway and Americrown donations to local groups exceeded $100,000.(Darlington Raceway)(4-19-2011)

  • Darlington and NASCAR Hall of Fame partner for ticket package: Darlington Raceway and the NASCAR Hall of Fame have partnered to bring fans a special ticket package for the Showtime Southern 500, honoring 2011 Hall of Fame inductees and South Carolina natives David Pearson and Bud Moore.
    Each package includes a seat in the Pearson grandstand for the Showtime Southern 500 on Saturday, May 7, admission to aspecial Q&A session with Pearson and Moore prior to the race, admission to the NASCAR Hall of Fame and a commemorative yearbook honoring – Bill France Sr., Bill France Jr., Richard Petty, Junior Johnson and Dale Earnhardt – the members of the Inaugural 2010 NASCAR Hall of Fame class. Only 500 packages are available and can be purchased by visiting DarlingtonRaceway.com/HallofFame or calling 866-459-RACE. Adult packages can be purchased for $90 each; packages for kids 17 and under are just $50. Tickets can bepurchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway)(3-22-2011)

  • Darlington Truck tickets on sale now: With the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season underway it means that the Too Tough To Tame 200 is just around the corner, and tickets to the event are becoming one of the hottest items in town. The tough trucks of the Camping World Truck Series are set to return to the famed 1.366-mile egg-shaped oval for the Too Tough To Tame 200 on Saturday, March 12 with the green-flag scheduled for 5:00 pm. In addition to the 200-mile race, the trucks will also practice and qualify giving fans a unique opportunity to take in a one-day show at Darlington Raceway. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at http://www.darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington)(2-23-2010)

  • Darlington Raceway donated life saving equipment: Darlington Raceway recently donated life saving extrication equipment to the Darlington City Fire Department. In a ceremony on the start-finish line at the famed facility, track President Chris Browning presented Fire Chief Jim Stone and Assistant Chief Robert Garland with the new AMKUS equipment. “The new equipment will help our department train fire fighters for emergency situations they will see in the field and save lives in the community,” said Fire Chief Stone. “We are very grateful for the generosity of Darlington Raceway.”
    “The Darlington City Fire Department has been an invaluable resource at the track for many years and I am happy we were able to help them by donating this equipment,” said Browning. “I am glad that the department will be able to use this equipment to help save lives in the Darlington community.” The AMKUS equipment will be added to the city’s new pumper truck, which was recently purchased by the department. The new $275,000 truck was put into service on December 27, 2010. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway)(1-24-2011)

  • NASCAR Legends honored with Palmetto Patriot: Darlington Raceway president Chris Browning was awarded theprestigious Palmetto Patriot award by Lieutenant Governor Andre Bauer during a ceremony at the famed track on Friday. In addition to Browning, NASCAR legends David Pearson, Bud Moore, Cale Yarborough and Cotton Owens – all South Carolina natives – were also honored along with former Darlington track president and NASCAR Executive, the late Jim Hunter and his wife Ann. “I am humbled and honored to accept the Palmetto Patriot award on behalf of Darlington Raceway,” said Browning. “Darlington Raceway has played an integral role in the growth and popularity of NASCAR racing and is one of our state’s most treasured assets.” The Palmetto Patriot Program recognizes individuals who have made outstanding contributions to their fellow citizens and the State of South Carolina. The Palmetto Patriot Award is given for one's commitment to public service within their state and community. The award is the highest the Lieutenant Governor can bestow. Tickets for all Darlington races / events can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway)(12-17-2010)

  • Ticket Price Changes at Darlington: Preparations are already underway for the 2011 NASCAR season at Darlington Raceway. With a schedule featuring all three NASCAR National Touring Series, 2011 is sure to be an unforgettable year at the track Too Tough To Tame. It was announced in August that the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series would return for the Too Tough To Tame 200 on Saturday, March 12 while the NASCAR Nationwide Series and Sprint Cup Series will return on Mother’s Day weekend, May 6-7, for the Royal Purple 200 and SHOWTIME Southern 500. Also new in 2011, military members will pay just half price for all seating including grandstand seating for the Sprint Cup Series SHOWTIME Southern 500. Military members taking advantage of the half price seating offer for the SHOWTIME Southern 500 will also receive a special camouflage Darlington Raceway t-shirt that they are encouraged to wear on race day. Military members will be asked to stand in their seating area during pre-race ceremonies and be recognized by the crowd. Tickets for the 2011 season at Darlington Raceway are on-sale to the general public. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway)(12-4-2010)

  • Southern 500 Tickets on sale: Tickets for the 2011 season at Darlington Raceway wnet on-sale to the general public Saturday, November 13. The 2011 season at Darlington Raceway will get underway on Saturday, March 12 when the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series makes its return for the Too Tough To Tame 200 for the second consecutive year. The NASCAR Nationwide Series and Sprint Cup Series are set to make their way to Darlington Raceway on Mother’s Day weekend, May 6-7, for their annual dance with the Lady in Black.
    Fans will notice several enhancements this year when ordering their tickets to Darlington Raceway, here are just a few:
    · New Youth Pricing – For the first time in the track’s storied history Darlington Raceway will offer half-price reserved seats at each event for youths 17 and under. All general admission seating at the Too Tough To Tame 200 and Royal Purple 200 will be free for youths age 17 and under.
    · Expanded Family Section Seating – Darlington Raceway has expanded its Family Section (alcohol and tobacco free seating) to include sections in all grandstands at the facility.
    · New Cooler Policy – Darlington Raceway has increased the size allowance for personal coolers being brought into the facility. Fans can now carry in a 14 x 14 x 14 soft-sided cooler with removable hard liner. The new cooler size gives fans six times more storage for food and beverage than under the previous policy.
    · Special Military Discount – Military members will pay just half price for grandstand seating at all events. Military members taking advantage of the half price seating offer for the SHOWTIME Southern 500 will also receive a special camouflage Darlington Raceway t-shirt that they are encouraged to wear on race day. Military members will be asked to stand in their seating area during pre-race ceremonies and be recognized by the crowd.
    · Special Military NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Offer – A special military package is being offered for the Too Tough ToTame 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race for just $7 that includes a general admission seat and pre-race pit pass.
    Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(11-14-2010)

  • GEICO partners with ISC tracks on camping areas: International Speedway Corporation announced an unprecedented partnership with GEICO Insurance at seven of its premier racing facilities nationwide. Beginning in 2011, the five year deal will provide GEICO with promotional and entitlement rights for camping areas at: Daytona International Speedway; Darlington Raceway; Chicagoland Speedway; Homestead-Miami Speedway; Phoenix International Raceway; Talladega Superspeedway; and Watkins Glen International. Under the terms of the agreement, GEICO will receive on-site signage and branding.(ICS)(11-2-2010)

  • Southern 500 returns on Mother's Day weekend: The mother of all races, the SHOWTIME Southern 500, will once again be run under the lights at Darlington Raceway on Mother’s Day weekend, May 7, 2011. The 62nd running of NASCAR’s most storied event will take the green-flag at approximately 7:30 pm. The May NASCAR weekend at Darlington will kick off with a full day of Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series action on Friday, May 6 capped off with the NASCAR Nationwide Series Royal Purple 200 that evening. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will also return to Darlington in 2011 for the second consecutive year. The Too Tough To Tame 200 is scheduled for Saturday, March 12, 2011 and will be the only NASCAR National Series event that weekend. Ticket renewal information will be sent to current ticket holders soon with a ticket on sale date expected late this fall. Seat request orders are being taken now for fans not eligible for renewals. To place a seat request order visit DarlingtonRaceway.com or call 866-459-RACE.(Darlington Raceway)(8-19-2010)

  • Midnight Blue performing concert before Darlington truck race: Local rock group Midway Blue has signed on to perform a pre-race concert prior to the Too Tough To Tame 200 at Darlington Raceway on August 14. After first coming together in late 2008, Midway Blue began touring throughout South Carolina and recently won the top prize on the SPEED program Fast Track To Fame. The pre-race concert is free of charge and will begin at 6:00 pm and will take place on the driver introduction stage at the start finish line.(Darlington Raceway)(8-13-2010)

  • Darlington Truck Race Tix for sale: With the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series set to make its return to Darlington Raceway in just over a month, tickets to the event are becoming one of the hottest items in town. The tough trucks of the Camping World Truck Series are set to return to the famed 1.366-mile egg-shaped oval for the Too Tough To Tame 200 on Saturday, August 14 at 7:30 pm. In addition to the 200-mile race the trucks will also practice and qualify giving fans a unique opportunity to take in a one-day show at Darlington Raceway. Tickets for the event include practice and qualifying as well as the race and can be purchased for just $25 while children 12 and under are admitted for free with a paying adult. Pre-race pit passes can also be purchased for an additional $15 per adult or $5 for children 17 and under. All pre-race pit passes include an autograph session on pit road with the drivers participating in the Too Tough To Tame 200. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway)(7-14-2010)

  • Darlington's NASCAR agreement is late: Darlington Raceway president Chris Browning isn’t sure how possible changes to next year’s Sprint Cup schedule would affect the track’s race date. The track’s Cup date has been Mother’s Day weekend since 2005 and the track has had success with it. The first four races sold out. “I feel like the date has worked very well for us,” Browning said. “And we don’t have reason to believe the date will be changed, but those kind of decisions are made over my head.” Browning said he hasn’t received the sanctioning agreements, which say when the track’s date will be. In the past, Browning usually has had them by now. NASCAR president Brian France said last week International Speedway Corporation, Darlington’s parent company, and Speedway Motorsports Inc. both have petitioned NAS-CAR to have dates realigned. ISC wants a second date for Kansas Speedway and SMI has wanted a Cup date for Kentucky the last few years. The company also wants a second date for Las Vegas. The schedule is likely to be released sometime near Labor Day. Browning said he hopes to stay with the Mother’s Day weekend date, but would prepare to promote whatever date is given to the track.(Morning News)(7-11-2010)

  • Denny Hamlin wins at Darlington: #11-Denny Hamlin won the Showtime Southern 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Darlington Raceway for his 3rd race of 2010 and 11th of his career. He also won the Nationwide race Friday night. It was his first weekend sweep in Nationwide and Cup. Pole sitter #1-Jamie McMurray finished 2nd, followed by #2-Busch, #24-Gordon, #42-Montoya, #29-Harvick, #18-Busch, #31-Burton, #39-Newman, and #83-Vickers. Harvick extended his points lead to 110 over #48-Johnson, who was involved in a wreck with #43-Allmendinger midway through the race and finished 36th. There were 20 lead changes among 11 drivers and 11 cautions for 56 yellow flag laps.
    See race results, awards, laps led and more on Jayski's Darlington Race Results/Awards page
    See Drivers Championship Points standings on Jayski's Drivers Points Standings page.(5-8-2010)

  • Inside NASCAR hosts to be Darlington grand marshalls: The hosts of the new SHOWTIME Sports series Inside NASCAR will be literally all over Darlington Raceway for the SHOWTIME Southern 500 weekend serving as Grand Marshalls and participating in numerous pre-race festivities. Plus, legendary mixed martial arts pioneer Frank Shamrock and world-ranked heavyweight contender Brett Rogers will be on hand to experience NASCAR Sprint Cup racing at its best and to represent Strikeforce, one of the world's leading MMA promoters. The Inside NASCAR cast of Michael Waltrip, Randy Pemberton, Chris Myers and Brad Daugherty will meet fans, participate in Q&A sessions and sign autographs at the SHOWTIME display area on Saturday at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. for one hour each session. Shamrock and Rogers also will meet fans and sign autographs at the SHOWTIME Sports display area on Saturday from 3 p.m. As Grand Marshalls, Waltrip, Pemberton and Daugherty will introduce the mothers of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers to give the command to start their engines prior to the SHOWTIME Southern 500. Pemberton will then make his way to the flag stand to wave the green-flag to start 500-miles of heart-pounding racing under the lights at the track "Too Tough To Tame."(Darlington PR)(5-6-2010)

  • Facility improvements hightlight Darlington race weekend: Fans attending the 2010 SHOWTIME Southern 500 this weekend will notice several facility improvements around Darlington Raceway. Many of the improvements are a direct result of feedback received from Darlington's passionate fans. When the green-flag drops on the Royal Purple 200 presented by O'Reilly Auto Parts on Friday and the SHOWTIME Southern 500 on Saturday it will be from a new illuminated flag stand. The new flag stand, installed during the off-season, features illuminated signage to showcase Darlington Raceway sponsors. Fans sitting in the Pearson grandstand in turn four will notice new and improved restroom facilities that will help decrease wait times during this weekend's events. The facilities are also equipped with water-saving technology to reduce the number of gallons of water used in the track's restrooms. New parking lot signage has been added to the track's lots at Gate 40 off of Highway 151 that will make finding cars easier after a long night of racing at the track "Too Tough To Tame." The signs all feature legendary NASCAR drivers including South Carolina natives, Cale Yarborough and David Pearson. Finally, Darlington Raceway expanded its family section seating to include sections on the frontstretch and backstretch. Each Family Section offers a non-smoking, non-drinking, family friendly atmosphere for the 2010 events at Darlington Raceway.(Darlington PR)(5-5-2010)

  • ETV Profiles "The Lady in Black" on May 6th: On Thursday, May 6 at 9:00pm/et, just one day before drivers once again take to the track "Too Tough To Tame," ETV premieres its newest "Carolina Stories" documentary, "The Lady in Black." Encore broadcasts will air on Sunday, May 9 at 4:00pm/et on ETV and Monday, May 10 at 9:00pm/et on the South Carolina Channel. Using a blend of original and NASCAR footage from the archives, this fast-paced program tracks the history of the Darlington Raceway, as told by the true legends of the sport, including Cale Yarborough, Cotton Owens, Junior Johnson, and David Pearson as well as some of today's biggest names, such as Jeff Gordon, Jeff Burton, Mark Martin, Richard Childress, and the "Iron Man" of the Nationwide Series, Jason Keller. And thanks to Baker Curb Racing, ETV gives fans a rare opportunity to go behind-the-scenes, riding along in the big rig as the #27 car is brought through the tunnel, and then prepared for the big race. Keller was driving for Baker Curb Racing in 2009 when the documentary was shot, and this year the Greenville native is closing in on his 500th start, which very well might take place at Darlington. Interviews with everyone from track officials to fans who have been returning to camp in the infield year after year, help define what makes Darlington so unique, and has become the single biggest weekend event in the Palmetto State. ETV is South Carolina’s statewide network with 11 television stations, eight radio stations and a closed-circuit educational telecommunications system in more than 2000 schools, colleges, businesses, and government agencies.(PR)(5-4-2010)

  • Tickets available for Darlington races: The 2010 Showtime Southern 500 is only days away and time is dwindling for fans who have not yet purchased their tickets to see NASCAR’s oldest tradition live. Tickets remain available for the event which has hosted a capacity crowd four of the last five years. During the offseason Darlington Raceway officials reduced prices on over 40,000 seats making the 2010 event the most affordable on record. Tickets can be purchased by calling 866-459-RACE, online at Darlington Raceway.com or by visiting the ticket office at the track “Too Tough To Tame.” Phones are open from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm, the ticket office at the track will be open from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm and fans can purchase online 24 hours-a-day.(Darlington Raceway)(5-4-2010)

  • Petty & Earnhardt added to Darlington Legends Walk: Just days before their induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame, Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt have both been added to the Darlington Legends walk on the grounds of the famed 1.366-mile egg-shaped oval. “Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt were obvious choices when we looked at who should be added to the Legends Walk,” said Darlington Raceway President, Chris Browning. “Petty was one of the pioneers of NASCAR and paved the way for the fan-driver interaction we know today. Earnhardt certainly left his mark on NASCAR and is still second on the all-time Darlington victory list with nine victories. Both drivers loved racing here and we are happy to honor them.” Keeping with the historic racing theme present throughout the Darlington Raceway facility, each of the Darlington Legends Walk monuments resembles a Goodyear racing tire and old style pit board. Each monument is made of solid granite and marble and weighs nearly 2,300 pounds. This is the third consecutive year new monuments have been added and the track plans to continue adding new monuments each year. “This is a great way for Darlington to put some of the history of NASCAR and our track on display for fans to enjoy,” said Browning. “The history of Darlington Raceway is so rich and we are going to do everything we can to preserve it for many generations to come.” Darlington Raceway Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway)(5-4-2010)

  • Showtime Southern 500 week declared: The week of the Showtime Southern 500 has once again been named Darlington Raceway week in South Carolina. The South Carolina Senate and House of Representatives recently passed a Concurrent Resolution decaling race week “Darlington Raceway Week in South Carolina, a week ‘Too Tough To Tame.’” The famed track’s 60 year history is a major reason that the South Carolina Senate and House of Representatives passed this Concurrent Resolution. The Resolution outlines the historical significance of Darlington Raceway and addresses the role the track played in building the foundation of what has become the number one spectator sport in the country. The Showtime Southern 500 week will shift into high-gear on Thursday with the sixth annual Car Hauler Parade making its way from the Florence Civic Center through the Darlington Square and finishing at the track. The racing action will rev up on Friday with a full day of on-track activity scheduled including practice and qualifying for the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series and the NASCAR Nationwide Series Royal Purple 200 presented by O’Reilly Auto Parts on Friday night. Saturday the Showtime Southern 500 will take the green-flag at 7:30 pm [actually around 7:44pm/et]. with NASCAR’s biggest stars battling for the Johnny Mantz Showtime Southern 500 trophy under the lights. Tickets for both Friday and Saturday are still available and can be purchased by calling 866-459-RACE or at the track’s website, DarlingtonRaceway.com.(Darlington Raceway)(5-3-2010)

  • Darlington ticket office open on weekends: The Darlington Raceway ticket office will open during the weekend to make ticket purchases more convenient and accessible for race fans. The ticket office will be open every Saturday and Sunday leading up to the SHOWTIME Southern 500 on May 8, 2010. Beginning Saturday, April 10, the ticket office will be open for fans to purchase their tickets. The weekend hours will be 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. on Saturdays and 1 p.m. - 5 p.m. on Sundays. The track's normal business hours of 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. will continue Monday through Friday. Tickets can also be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at http://www.darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington PR)(4-10-2010)

  • Darlington racing green: The green flag will be greener than ever as it signals the start of the Darlington 200 and Southern 500 races at Darlington Raceway May 7-8. For the first time, all the electrical needs of these NASCAR races will be met with 100 percent Green Power. The raceway dubbed “Too Tough To Tame” goes green that weekend with the help of Santee Cooper and Pee Dee Electric Cooperative. Darlington Raceway has purchased Green-e Energy Certified Green Power blocks and tags offered by Pee Dee Electric Cooperative and Santee Cooper. Toy Nettles, president and CEO of Pee Dee Electric Cooperative, said, “Pee Dee Electric Cooperative is extremely proud to partner with Darlington Raceway in providing 100% Green Power for the entire NASCAR weekend, including the Darlington 200 and the fan favorite Southern 500. These races will be run under the glow of the “Green-e” logo and all the rigorous standards it represents.” Santee Cooper has over 21 megawatts of clean, renewable Green Power from sources including landfill biogas and solar power. In fact, Santee Cooper is the only utility generating Green Power in South Carolina, and Pee Dee Electric Cooperative promotes Green Power sales to its 30,000 customers. Green-e Marketplace provides forward-thinking organizations with a simple, nationally recognized logo they can use to communicate their commitment to renewable energy to their customers and shareholders. The Green-e logo is the nation’s leading symbol of renewable energy excellence and distinguishes Green-e Marketplace participants as environmental leaders. Green-e is a program of Center for Resource Solutions, a nonprofit that creates policy and market solutions to advance sustainable energy. To learn more, visit Center for Resource Solutions and Green-e Marketplace. Incorporated in 1939, Pee Dee Electric Cooperative serves parts of six counties in northeastern South Carolina. The 30,000-plus members of the electric distribution co-op live in Darlington, Marion, Florence, Lee, Dillon and Chesterfield counties.(Darlington Raceway)(4-5-2010)

  • Showtime to sponsor Southern 500: Showtime Networks Inc., the home of popular cable series like "Dexter" and "Weeds," agreed to a multiyear deal to become the title sponsor for Darlington Raceway's Southern 500. "I think they bring a lot to the table," track president Chris Browning told The Associated Press, ahead of an official announcement expected later Monday. This is a first for Showtime, which launched its "Inside NASCAR" program in February. Ken Hershman, executive vice president and general manager of Showtime Sports, said the sponsorship is the next step in linking the network with one of the country's most popular sports. The May 8 race will be known as the Showtime Southern 500. Like many sporting events, Darlington Raceway has struggled to find corporate backing in a floundering economy. Showtime will be Darlington's third title sponsor in the past three races, after a five-year deal with the Carolina Dodge Dealers ended in 2008. Last year, Browning signed GoDaddy.com to underwrite the event about a month before the green flag dropped. "Inside NASCAR" is a weekly highlights and analysis show along the lines of its "Inside the NFL" series. The NASCAR show is hosted by Chris Myers, Randy Pemberton, former NBA star Brad Daugherty and driver Michael Waltrip. Getting more than a one-year commitment from Showtime means both the network and the track can take full advantage of each other's resources leading up to the 2011 race. One wrinkle is a contest where a viewer can win a VIP experience to Darlington's race on Mother's Day Weekend. Showtime spokesman Chris DeBlasio said along with an up-close look at the Sprint Cup race, the winner will show up in Victory Lane and be presented a replica of the trophy that will go to the race champion. The network also expects to have a hospitality tent for fans on Darlington grounds, with perhaps some celebrities from its cable shows popping by.(AP/ESPN)
    AND: Showtime, which debuted its “Inside NASCAR” show last month, is climbing deeper into the sport by title-sponsoring the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. The sponsorship is a multiyear agreement between the network and the historic track.(Sports Business Journal)(3-30-2010)

  • Darlington Expands family section: Darlington Raceway will expand its family section seating for the 2010 Southern 500 announced track President, Chris Browning. Family sections will now be available on both straight-aways at Darlington Raceway. Wallace grandstand section V on the frontstretch and Colvin grandstand section X on the backstretch will be designated family sections. Each family section will be designated as a non-smoking, non-drinking seating option geared towards families. Family seating can be purchased today by contacting the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or visiting DarlingtonRaceway.com.(Darlington PR)(1-31-2010)

  • Darlington President wins Littlejohn Award: Darlington Raceway President, Chris Browning, was award the prestigious Joe Littlejohn award at the 2010 National Motorsport Press Association convention in Concord, N.C. Browning, who has served as Darlington Raceway President since 2004, was selected by the members of the NMPA because of his commitment and dedication to motorsports. During his tenure at Darlington, Browning has made the NMPA Hall of Fame - located in the Darlington Raceway Museum - a top priority and has overseen numerous facility improvements. The Joe Littlejohn award is given annually to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the NMPA and motorsports.(Darlington Raceway)(1-29-2010)

  • Trucks to race at Darlington? UPDATE: Sirius NASCAR Radio's Sirius Speedway with host Dave Moody is reporting that the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will compete at Darlington Raceway in August of this year, as a replacement for the now-canceled event at the Milwaukee Mile. Expect an official announcement during this week's NASCAR portion of the annual Media Tour.(Sirius Speedway PR)(1-19-2010)
    UPDATE: been told that the date of the race will be August 14, 2010.(1-20-2010)
    UPDATE: The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will make a return to the track “Too Tough to Tame” on August 14, 2010 announced. “Our fans have asked us to bring back the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series because Darlington is a perfect fit for the tough racing the series offers,” said Darlington President Chris Browning. “We are excited to be able to bring back the trucks in 2010 and look forward to putting on a memorable show for all of our fans.” The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series raced at Darlington Raceway from 2001-04. The late Bobby Hamilton won the Inaugural event in 2001 and again in 2003. Ted Musgrave raced to Victory Lane in 2002 and Sprint Cup driver Kasey Kahne took the checkered flag in 2004 – the series’ last visit to the track. General admission seating is available for only $25 and children 12 and under will be admitted free. Each admission includes all practice and qualifying sessions as well as the Too Tough to Tame 200 which is set to take the green-flag at approximately 7:30 p.m. In addition to grandstand seating, fans may also purchase a pre-race pit pass for just $15 each. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at http://www.darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway)(1-20-2010)

  • Darlington opens ticket kiosk in Myrtle Beach: Darlington Raceway has opened up a ticket kiosk location in the popular Tanger Outlet center located on Highway 17 in Myrtle Beach, S.C. The kiosk opened the week of Thanksgiving and will remain open for the remainder of the year. Fans taking advantage of the opportunity to purchase tickets at the Tanger Outlet kiosk location will receive a DVD copy of the 2009 Southern 500. The race, won by fan favorite Mark Martin, was the marquee event during Darlington Raceway's 60th Season of Racing. Tickets to the 2010 Southern 500, as well as the NASCAR Nationwide Series Darlington 200 are on-sale now. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at http://www.darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington PR)(12-11-2009)

  • Darlington Raceway receives Landscape Design Award: Darlington Raceway has received the prestigious Landscape Design Award from the Landscape Critics Council of South Carolina. The award is given annually to a business in the state of South Carolina that exhibits well manicured and unique landscape displays. The award is voted on by members of the Landscape Critics Council of South Carolina. Darlington’s new tunnel entrance, infield camping areas, hospitality village and main administration entrance played a large role in swaying voters to select Darlington Raceway as the Landscape Design Award winner. Tickets to the 2010 Southern 500, as well as the NASCAR Nationwide Series Darlington 200 are on-sale now. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway)(10-26-2009)

  • Darlington reduces price on 40,000 seats: Tickets for the 2010 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway go on-sale to the public this Saturday, October 10. The famed 500-mile race will once again take place on Saturday night of Mother's Day weekend and will be preceded by the Diamond Hill Plywood 200 on Friday evening. Fans purchasing tickets for the 2010 installment of the Southern 500 will notice new, lower prices in nearly every grandstand at Darlington Raceway. Officials at Darlington reduced ticket prices on over 40,000 seats during the off-season making attending the Southern 500 more affordable than ever. With ticket prices starting as low as $35 night-racing at Darlington is the best value on the Sprint Cup Circuit. Tickets for both events and the Darlington Stripe Zone can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at http://www.darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway PR)(10-8-2009)

  • Darlington Raceway slashes prices for 2010:: Ticket renewals for the 2010 Southern 500 [scheduled for May 8, 2010] are underway with prices reduced in nearly every grandstand making it more affordable than ever to attend the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race there. “We are always looking at ways to make attending a race at Darlington more affordable for our fans,” said track President, Chris Browning. “The new pricing structure makes the 2010 Southern 500 an even better value for NASCAR fans who love to see fender-banging, side-by-side racing and non-stop action.” The new ticket pricing, being rolled out with ticket renewals, is sure to be a hit among NASCAR fans. The new pricing model reduces ticket prices in four of the track’s five grandstands. The new pricing is as follows:
    Grandstand, 2009 Price, 2010 Price, Savings
    Wallace (Rows 3-6), $85, $59, $26
    Colvin (Rows 15-21), $70, $59, $11
    Pearson, $95, $90, $5
    Brasington, $95, $90, $5
    Additionally, fans that renew by the renewal deadline of September 18, 2009 will save an extra $5 per ticket purchased. The popular Darlington Raceway Premium Payment Plan also returns in 2010. Fans can choose the Darlington Raceway Premium Payment Plan which allows them to spread the cost of their tickets over four equal monthly payments when they use their Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover card to purchase their tickets. All renewal incentives are open to fans that purchased tickets in 2009 and wish to do so in 2010. To renew fans can go online to darlingtonraceway.com/renewals, call the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or mail in the renewal order form that they received in the mail. Fans that wish to purchase tickets for the 2010 Southern 500 but are not eligible for renewals may put in a seat request at DarlingtonRaceway.com or by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE.
    Don’t miss the 2009 Darlington Historic Racing Festival presented by O’Reilly Auto Parts on Saturday September 26, 2009. The event will feature something for the entire family. Tickets for the event are $15 per day or $25 for the entire weekend, kids age 12 and under will be admitted free and each admission includes access to the garage and infield area. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 843-395-8802 or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway)(8-8-2009)

  • Commemorative Darlington 60th Season DVD available: Darlington Raceway has worked with NASCAR Media Group to produce a special commemorative DVD of the 2009 Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com. Each DVD includes:
    · Full broadcast length version of the 60th running of the Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com
    · Downloadable screen savers for PC or MAC users
    · Free 5X7 print from Officially licensed artist Stephen Balok
    · Coupon from NASCAR.com
    DVD’s can be purchased by visiting the track’s website, DarlingtonRaceway.com, for only $9.99 plus tax and shipping and handling.(Darlington Raceway)(6-1-2009)

  • Darlington has about 5,000 tickets left: It could take nice weather and motivated NASCAR fans to continue a string of sellouts at Darlington. Darlington Raceway spokesman Jake Harris said in an e-mail Thursday there were fewer than 5,000 seats available for Saturday night's Southern 500. Darlington leaders are hopeful they can sell out their fifth straight Mother's Day weekend race. Darlington seats about 62,000. The track had gone several races without selling out until 2005, when it first began holding a Saturday race under its newly installed lights. Darlington has sold out each season since. In January, Darlington officials cut prices on some tickets by $10. The track also recently announced price cuts at concessions for the upcoming race.(Associated Press)(5-8-2009)

  • Yarborough and Waltrip added to Darlington Legends Walk: Fans attending the Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com this weekend will be able to take a trip down memory lane at Darlington Raceway. Monuments honoring the careers of Cale Yarborough and Darrell Waltrip have been added to the Darlington Legends Walk behind the Tyler tower grandstand behind the frontstretch. Each marker is made of granite and marble, resembles a Goodyear racing tire and old style pit board and weighs nearly 2,300 pounds. “Adding Cale and Darrell to the Darlington Legends Walk is the perfect way to honor their respective careers at Darlington Raceway,” said track president Chris Browning. “We hope fans enjoy reading about Cale and Darrell’s careers at Darlington Raceway and reminiscing about their place in history at Darlington.” Tickets to the Southern 500 and Nationwide Series race can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(5-7-2009)

  • Darlington hoping for another sellout: Several times a day, Darlington Raceway president Chris Browning walks over to the track's ticket office to get a progress report on sales. Recently, he's liked what he's seen. Even so, a fifth consecutive sellout for the historic facility is far from certain as Darlington gears up for Saturday night's revival of the Southern 500. "We're slightly behind where we were this point last year. If we sell it out, it's going to come down to the wire," Browning said Monday. "We're still optimistic we've got a shot at it. We had a great week last week. About the last probably two and half, three weeks, our daily sales have beaten the daily sales of the previous year. That's all positive." Darlington has sold out four consecutive races since its lone event was moved to the Saturday of Mother's Day weekend prior to the 2005 season. This year the track is bringing back a Southern 500 race name that was a fixture at the South Carolina facility from its founding in 1950 until 2004, when it was phased out. With a seating capacity of roughly 62,000, Darlington is one of the smaller facilities on the Cup Series tour. Yet the track is bidding to become only the third venue this season -- along with Daytona and Bristol -- to announce a sellout. In past years, Darlington sold out a week or more in advance. That was before the current economic recession, which has made it very difficult for many tracks to sell tickets. "We have a shot at it, but everything's going to have to line up perfectly for us to do it. But we still do have a shot at it," Browning said. "I know that if we sell it out, it will probably end up being on race day."(NASCAR.com)(5-6-2009)

  • Darlington welcomes Car Hauler Parade: The Darlington Car Hauler Parade and Festival will be 4 to 7:30pm Thursday, May 7th at the Florence [SC] Civic Center with entertainment and live music performed by Southern rock and country band Southern Blue. NASCAR transporters and take pictures next to your favorite team’s haulers. Meet the hauler drivers and get autographs plus free give-a-ways from vendors. Kids can enjoy the multiple inflatable rides and games throughout the fun-filled festival. Fans, join in on the exciting Silent Auction full of great NASCAR items and more to benefit the American Red Cross. At 7pm the parade of Sprint Cup Series haulers begins to make its way along the 12-mile route to Darlington Square, where the anticipating crowd celebrates with added live entertainment and the fireworks of Race Fest. Florence welcomes NASCAR to the Darlington Race track that’s “Too Tough to Tame” for the Mother’s Day weekend races.(Florence Civic Center)(5-6-2009)

  • Darlington lowers concession prices: In an effort to reduce costs for fans attending the 2009 Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com Darlington Raceway and Americrown, the track’s concessionaire, have reduced prices on some food and beverage items and added value meals to the menu. Highlights of the new menu include:
    · Reduced price on regular all-beef hot dog to $3, a 25% savings
    · Hot dog and fry combo meal for $5 – a $2 savings
    · Cheeseburger and fry combo meal for $7 – a $2 savings
    · Kids Value Meal with peanut butter and jelly sandwich, cookie, fruit roll-up and half pint of milk for $4
    · Reduced price on Dasani bottled water to $3, a 25% savings
    In addition to the reduced prices fans will also notice two new signature Darlington items on the menu, the Darlington Super Slaw Dog and the Carolina Pulled Pork BBQ Sandwich with Coleslaw. Priced at $5, the Darlington Super Slaw Dog is 1/3 pound, all beef hot dog served with coleslaw and other hot dog condiments. Also new for 2009 in the Carolina pulled pork BBQ sandwich with coleslaw served on a Kaiser roll with a choice of mustard style BBQ, vinegar style BBQ or Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ and is priced at $6.
    Be a part of history when Darlington Raceway celebrates 60 years of racing in 2009. Tickets to the 2009 Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com, as well as the NASCAR Nationwide Series Diamond Hill Plywood 200 are on-sale now. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(5-4-2009)

  • Yarborough to serve as Darlington Pace Car Driver: As part of the celebration of 60 Years of Racing at Darlington Raceway, Cale Yarborough will serve as the honorary pace car driver to start the 2009 Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com announced track President Chris Browning. “We couldn’t be more excited to have Cale pace the field for the Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com,” said Browning. “Cale’s record of five Southern 500 wins makes him the perfect candidate to pace the field for the return of the Southern 500.” Yarborough, a native of nearby Timmonsville, S.C., is tied with Jeff Gordon for the most wins in the Southern 500 with five. In addition to Cale Yarborough several other former Darlington Raceway winners will be honored during pre-race ceremonies prior to the Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com. All-time Darlington victory leader David Pearson, Richard Petty, Ned Jarrett, Buddy Baker and Sterling Marlin will also be honored along with all active Darlington winners. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(4-25-2009)

  • Darlington walls go retro for Southern 500: When spectators and competitors arrive at Darlington Raceway for the May 9th Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com everyone will notice one distinct difference – red and white retaining walls surrounding the track “Too Tough to Tame.” “Giving the most famous walls on the NASCAR circuit a retro facelift seemed very fitting as part of our 60th celebration,” said track President, Chris Browning. “This is the first time since 1989 that the walls have been painted anything but white and it certainly reminds me of the early days of NASCAR racing.” The walls are painted in 40-foot sections alternating red and white and took nearly 50 hours and 315 gallons of paint to complete. In addition to the red and white paint scheme, a retro font was used for the Darlington Raceway signage at the start/finish line. Tickets to the 2009 Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com, as well as the NASCAR Nationwide Series Diamond Hill Plywood 200 are on-sale now. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at http://www.darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway PR)(4-20-2009)

  • Darlington Raceway Tix Office Extends Hours: In an effort to make it easier for race fans to purchase tickets the Darlington Raceway ticket office will now be open every Saturday and Sunday through the Southern 500 on May 9 track President Chris Browning announced today. In addition to the normal operating hours of 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday the ticket office will now be open from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. on Saturdays and 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. on Sundays. “We know it can be tough for our fans to get out of work and get to the ticket office by 5:00 p.m. on weekdays,” said Browning. “Opening on the weekends and extending our hours during the week is something we wanted to do to make it easier for our fans to purchase tickets.” Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(4-18-2009)

  • Darlington Unveils Johnny Mantz Trophy: The winner of the 2009 Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com will be the recipient of a very special piece of hardware - the Johnny Mantz Southern 500 trophy. Named after Inaugural Southern 500 winner Johnny Mantz, the new trophy replaces the crystal palmetto tree that was used since Darlington began running on Mother's Day weekend in 2005. The four-tiered trophy stands approximately three feet tall, weighs nearly 40 pounds and features engraved photos of all 43 past Darlington Raceway winners. Longtime Darlington Raceway ticket holder, Kent Lewis, came up with the design concept for the trophy. The trophy was created by American Trophy in Florence, S.C. and following the 2009 Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com will be placed in the Darlington Raceway Museum year-round for fans to view.(Darlington Raceway PR)(4-16-2009)

  • GoDaddy.com to be presenting sponsor of Southern 500: GoDaddy.com, the world's dominant Web hosting domain registrar, has signed on to become the presenting sponsor of the 2009 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway, track president Chris Browning announced. The Southern 500 presented by GoDaddy.com will be run on May 9, 2009. Be a part of history when Darlington Raceway celebrates 60 years of racing in 2009. Tickets to the 2009 Southern 500® presented by GoDaddy.com, as well as the NASCAR Nationwide Series Diamond Hill Plywood 200 are on-sale now. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at http://www.darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway PR)(4-13-2009)

  • Pre-Race Concert at Darlington: Fans attending the 2009 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway are in for an extra special treat this year. As part of the celebration of 60 Years of Racing at Darlington Raceway Vault will be hosting an exclusive pre-race concert by Mercury Nashville Recording artist Billy Currington on the frontstretch during the 2009 Southern 500 pre-race show. In addition to a pre-race concert, Currington will also perform the National Anthem prior to the Southern 500. Be a part of history when Darlington Raceway celebrates 60 years of racing in 2009. Tickets to the 2009 Southern 500, as well as the NASCAR Nationwide Series Diamond Hill Plywood 200 are on-sale now. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway)(4-7-2009)

  • South Carolina declares Darlington Raceway Week: The week of the Southern 500 will take on an even more important meaning in 2009. The South Carolina Senate and House of Representatives passed a Concurrent Resolution declaring race week Darlington Raceway Week in South Carolina, a week “Too Tough to Tame.” Darlington Raceway president Chris Browning took part in the announcement at the State House. In addition to the announcement of the Concurrent Resolution, Darlington Raceway officials also unveiled the findings of a recently completed economic impact study conducted by Washington Economics Group, Inc. Darlington Raceway or the track “Too Tough to Tame” as it is known to many, is where the purest of NASCAR competition meets true southern hospitality. A NASCAR staple since 1950, Darlington Raceway has seen some of motorsports most talented drivers thunder to Victory Lane. In 2009 a NASCAR tradition, the Southern 500, will return as Darlington Raceway celebrates 60 Seasons of Racing. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(4-1-2009)

  • Darlington Raceway generates #54 million for area: A study by the Washington Economics Group, Inc. has found that Darlington Raceway generates an annual economic benefit of $54 million for the Pee Dee region and state of South Carolina, including the creation of 874 jobs in the region. The economic impact study was conducted over a period of several months and utilized the IMPLAN model, which quantifies the direct and indirect benefits of economic activity. In addition to identifying the total economic impact of $54 million, the study also found that:
    · NASCAR events and other activities throughout the year at Darlington Raceway result in $19 million of labor income for workers throughout South Carolina annually, benefiting workers in all sectors of the state’s economy.
    · These activities are also an important source of fiscal revenues. Each year these activities produce over $7.9 million for federal, state and local governments. Of this total, $3.4 million flow directly to state and local governments.
    · Year round track operations contribute $30 million annually toward South Carolina’s gross state product. Referred to by economists as “value added,” this is the portion of business revenues that provides compensation to workers and capital income. Value added is also the principle source of income to households and a key measure of Darlington Raceway’s ongoing contributions to the South Carolina economy. Darlington Raceway hosts two major NASCAR races a year, the Southern 500 and the Diamond Hill Plywood 200. Additionally, the track “Too Tough to Tame” also hosts the Darlington Historic Racing Festival each September celebrating the history of oval track racing. During the 2008 Southern 500, Darlington Raceway hosted fans from all 50 states and more than 7 different countries.(Darlington Raceway PR)(3-30-2009)

  • All You Can Eat Tix Package returns at Darlington: The immensely popular all-you-can-eat Colvin Grill ticket package will return for the 2009 Southern 500. Ticket packages start at $50 and can be purchased by calling 1-866-459-RACE or logging onto DarlingtonRaceway.com. Each package includes seating in the Colvin grandstand and unlimited hamburgers, hot dogs, potato chips and soft drinks in the Colvin Grill. “The Colvin Grill all-you-can-eat ticket package was a tremendous success in 2008,” said Browning. “This ticket package is a way to reward our loyal fans with a low cost option to attend the 2009 Southern 500 during our 60th Season of Racing.” Additionally, fans who have already purchased tickets for the 2009 Southern 500 or plan to purchase tickets in a grandstand other than Colvin may add the all-you-can-eat package to their existing ticket for only $15 per person. Each fan who takes advantage of this unique offer will receive a special wristband valid for admission to the Colvin Grill adjacent to the Colvin grandstand outside of turn 2 at Darlington Raceway. The grill will open at 5:00 p.m. on May 9th and will close at 7:00 p.m. Fans are encouraged to act quickly as only a limited number of Colvin Grill ticket packages are available. Be a part of history when Darlington Raceway celebrates 60 years of racing in 2009. Tickets to the 2009 Southern 500, as well as the NASCAR Nationwide Series Diamond Hill Plywood 200 are on-sale now. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(3-10-2009)

  • Fans can vote for Darlington Raceway Top Moment: Fans of Darlington Raceway are being put to the ultimate test – voting on the most memorable moment in the 60 year history of the track “Too Tough to Tame.” Online voting begins today on the track’s website – DarlingtonRaceway.com.
    Fans will be able to select one of the following moments as the top moment in Darlington Raceway history:
    · 1950, Inaugural Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway.
    · 1965, Ned Jarrett wins Southern 500 by largest margin in NASCAR history, 14 laps.
    · 1967, Richard Petty records his 55th career victory at Darlington, pushing him past his father Lee on the all-time wins list.
    · 1968, South Carolina natives David Pearson and Cale Yarborough record their first Darlington victories. Pearson goes on to win a total of 10 races at the Lady in Black while Yarborough wins a record five Southern 500’s in his career.
    · 1977, Darrell Waltrip wins his first Superspeedway race beating Bobby Allison, Richard Petty and David Pearson in dramatic fashion.
    · 1980, David Pearson wins his 10th and final race at Darlington Raceway. It was Pearson’s 105th and final career victory.
    · 1982, Dale Earnhardt breaks his 39 race winless streak and wins the Rebel 500. It was Earnhardt’s first of nine Darlington wins.
    · 1985, Bill Elliott wins the first ever Winston Million in the Southern 500.
    · 1995, Jeff Gordon wins his first race at Darlington Raceway in the Southern 500.
    · 1999, Jeff Burton wins the historic 50th running of the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway.
    · 2003, In the 100th Sprint Cup race at Darlington Raceway Ricky Craven beats Kurt Busch in dramatic fashion. Craven’s margin of victory is .002 second and is a NASCAR record that still stands today.
    · 2005 – 2006, Greg Biffle wins back-to-back events at the track “Too Tough to Tame.”
    Fans are encouraged to check DarlingtonRaceway.com often to keep up with the poll results. The top Darlington Raceway Moment will be announced prior to the 2009 Southern 500. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-23-2009)

  • Darlington Historic Racing Festival Returns: After a successful Inaugural event, the Darlington Historic Racing Festival is set to return in 2009, announced Darlington Raceway President, Chris Browning. The event will once again be run on a Saturday and Sunday, September 26-27. The event was moved from its original Labor Day weekend date to help accommodate more entries in 2009. The 2008 festival was highlighted with appearances by some of NASCAR’s all-time greats including: David Pearson, Junior Johnson, Darrell Waltrip, Buddy Baker, Bobby and Donnie Allison, Marvin Panch and many more. There was plenty for fans to see and do at the festival throughout the weekend. In addition to question and answer and autograph sessions with the NASCAR legends, over 125 cars were on display at the event with nearly 100 of the cars turning laps on the historic 1.366-mile egg-shaped oval. The two-day festival is slated to take place on September 26 and 27 with single day tickets available for $15 or two-day tickets for $25. Children 12 and under will once again be admitted for free. More info at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(1-29-2009)

  • Tix prices reduced for Southern 500 at Darlington: In an effort to help race fans during these difficult economic times, Darlington Raceway is reducing ticket prices on nearly 9,000 seats for the 2009 Southern 500, track president Chris Browning announced. All seats in rows 3-14 in the Colvin grandstand will now be only $35, a $10 discount off the original price. “We are celebrating a historic milestone in 2009 with the 60th Season of Racing at Darlington Raceway and we want to make sure that our fans can be here for this special event,” said Browning. “We recognize that economic times are tough for everyone right now and want to do our part to help reduce the cost of attending an event at Darlington Raceway.” Since moving to Mother’s Day weekend in 2005, Darlington Raceway has sold out four consecutive Sprint Cup Series events. To purchase tickets for the 2009 Southern 500 contact the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 843-395-8802 or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(1-8-2009)

  • 2009 Southern 500 tix on sale Saturday: After many long months of waiting, tickets for the 2009 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway go on-sale to the public this Saturday, September 20. Darlington Raceway will celebrate 60 years of racing in 2009 and the celebration will begin with the Nationwide Series Diamond Hill Plywood 200 on Friday, May 8. On Saturday, May 9, one of NASCAR’s most revered races returns to Darlington Raceway – the Southern 500. The Southern 500, known by many as NASCAR’s greatest annual challenge, will be run under the lights for the first time ever at the track “Too Tough to Tame.” Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.(Darlington Raceway PR)(9-18-2008)

  • Southern 500 returns to Darlington: Old and new traditions will unite during the 60th season of racing at Darlington Raceway when the Southern 500 name returns to the track "Too Tough to Tame" on Mother's Day weekend in 2009, track president Chris Browning announced today. In 2009 the annual Sprint Cup Series race at Darlington Raceway is sure to be an even bigger spectacle as the race will once again be known as the Southern 500. A track rich in tradition, Darlington Raceway ran the first Southern 500 on September 4, 1950. Californian Johnny Mantz drove to victory that day after starting in the back of a 75-car field. The tradition continued for 54 years with Jimmie Johnson winning the last Southern 500 in 2004. Beginning in 2005 a new tradition began at Darlington Raceway: Saturday night racing on Mother's Day weekend. Fans have turned out in full force to see the stars of NASCAR dance with the "Lady in Black" under the lights. The event has quickly become one of the most difficult tickets to get on the NASCAR schedule and has sold out for four consecutive years. Ticket renewal orders are being accepted now for fans that purchased tickets to the Sprint Cup Series event in 2008 more info at 866-459-RACE or online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(8-14-2008)

  • Darlington Ticket Renewal Underway: After four consecutive sellouts tickets to the Sprint Cup Series event at Darlington Raceway are becoming some of the most coveted tickets on the NASCAR circuit. Fans that purchased tickets to the 2008 Dodge Challenger 500 at Darlington Raceway can begin renewing their seats now for the 2009 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event weekend at Darlington Raceway. 2009 marks the 60th season of racing at the track "Too Tough to Tame" and customers that renew their seats before the deadline of August 18, 2008 are being offered several renewal incentives. All incentives are open to fans that purchased tickets in 2008 and wish to do so in 2009. To renew fans can go online to http://www.darlingtonraceway.com/renewals, call the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or mail in the renewal order form that they received in the mail.(Darlington Raceway PR)(7-15-2008)

  • No talks, but Darlington president wouldn't be opposed to date change: MORE: While the Mother's Day date has worked for Darlington Raceway, raceway president Chris Browning said he wouldn't be opposed to moving it back to Labor Day weekend if an opportunity ever came up. The track hosted the Southern 500 on Labor Day weekend from 1950-2003. The final Southern 500 was run in November of 2004. "We wouldn't be opposed to it at all," Browning said. "Nothing in the sport is ever set in stone." Browning said there haven't been any talks on the subject, but attendance in California, which got the Labor Day weekend date, has been down since the first year. There were various Internet rumors earlier this year that California might swap its date with Atlanta. And Browning said if California's date would change, he would like first crack at it. "We would hope (NASCAR) would come talk to us," he said.(Florence [SC] Morning News)(5-10-2008)
    UPDATE: The romantic in Jim Hunter would love to see the Southern 500 back at his beloved Darlington Raceway. The pragmatist in NASCAR's chief spokesman is certain why it shouldn't. Seemingly ever since the Southern 500 left this country track for California Speedway on Labor Day weekend after 2004, whispers have abounded about a triumphant return to South Carolina where the race was run for 54 years. Hunter doesn't expect more changes."We could sell 55 to 58 thousand tickets here on Labor Day five years ago," Hunter said Saturday. "We moved it to California and they sell 90 or 92 (thousand) or something. From a business standpoint, that is a no-brainer."(Associated Press)(5-11-2008)

  • Sprint Cup race at Darlington Sold Out: For the fourth consecutive time since the race moved to Mother's Day weekend in May 2005, reserved grandstand seating for the 2008 Dodge Challenger 500 is a sellout, Darlington Raceway President Chris Browning announced today. "The staff at Darlington Raceway has worked harder than ever to reach a sellout crowd for the 2008 Dodge Challenger 500," said Browning. "Four consecutive sellout crowds for the Dodge Challenger 500 shows the overwhelming support we receive from NASCAR fans in South Carolina, the United States and around the world." Race tickets have been sold in 50 states, including Alaska and Hawaii, and the District of Columbia as well as several countries around the world. Infield admissions for Saturday's Dodge Challenger 500 are still available and can be purchased by calling 866-459-RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(5-9-2008)

  • Mother's Day tribute at Darlington: The mothers of the Sprint Cup drivers will join their sons during Saturday's prerace festivities at Darlington Raceway. The mothers will be introduced with their sons during driver introductions. They also will give the command for their sons to start their engines and begin the 500-mile race.(Delaware News Journal)(5-8-2008)

  • Tix still available at Darlington; Dilner to grand marshal hauler parade: Economic times are tough and tough times call for a trip to the track "Too Tough to Tame." Race fans looking for ways to spend their economic stimulus payments from the federal government need look no further than the Dodge Challenger 500 race weekend, May 8-10 at Darlington Raceway. Fans who wish to spend some of their stimulus money at Darlington Raceway have plenty of options:
    * Tickets to the Dodge Challenger 500: Ticket prices start as low as $45 and great seats on the frontstretch are still available. Tickets to the mother of all race tracks make a great Mother's Day gift.
    * Tickets to the Diamond Hill Plywood 200: Ticket prices start as low as $30 and get you admission for a full day of on-track activity. Each Friday ticket includes Sprint Cup Series practice, Sprint Cup and Nationwide qualifying and the excitement of Nationwide Series racing under the lights at Darlington - an amazing deal, all for only $30.
    * Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and NMPA Hall of Fame: Are you an old school NASCAR fan? We have got the answer for you; a trip to the Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA) Hall of Fame. The Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and NMPA are located just behind the Colvin grandstands at Darlington Raceway. Fans who tour the museum will be treated to some of the most legendary cars of NASCAR's yesteryear, including the Plymouth Johnny Mantz drove to victory in the first Southern 500 in 1950. Fans can see all of this and much more for only $5.40.
    * Driver Gear: Still trying to get your wardrobe up-to-date with your driver's new colors for 2008? Look no further than the gift shop at Darlington Raceway. The gift shop at Darlington Raceway can help get you outfitted in the latest driver apparel for your favorite driver. Located behind the Colvin grandstand, the Darlington Raceway gift shop carries all of the latest in driver apparel, die-cast and other novelty items to help you show your support for your favorite driver.
    * Darlington Stripe Zone: For fans looking for the ultimate Darlington Raceway experience look no further than the Darlington Stripe Zone. The pre-race Stripe Zone package includes: appearances by current Sprint Cup Series stars Clint Bowyer and Kasey Kahne, pre-race pit passes, a premium parking pass with each order, pre-race food and beverage, track souvenir, live entertainment, and additional giveaways. This package can be added to any grandstand ticket for the Dodge Challenger 500 for only $140.
    AND SPEED television personality Bob Dillner will serve as Grand Marshal for the fourth annual Darlington Hauler Parade on Wednesday, May 7. Dillner is best known for his work covering NASCAR racing on various SPEED network programs including: NASCAR Victory Lane, NASCAR Live and The SPEED Report. In addition to covering racing, Dillner is also an owner/driver in various forms of Super Late Model racing, the Pro Challenge Series and Legends Car racing with drivers Zach Stroupe and his daughter Meghan. Don't miss your chance to see another incredible finish at Darlington Raceway when the stars of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series take on the track "Too Tough to Tame" in the Dodge Challenger 500 on May 10, 2008. The racing action kicks off with the Nationwide Series Diamond Hill Plywood 200 on May 9th. Order your tickets now by calling 1-866-459-RACE.(Darlington Raceway)(5-1-2008)

  • Darlington National Anthem singer announced: South Carolina native and Mercury Recording artist, Julie Roberts, will perform the National Anthem prior to the 2008 Dodge Challenger 500 at Darlington Raceway. Roberts, the daughter of an engineer and an accountant, grew up singing country in Lancaster, S.C. Order tickets by calling 1-866-459-RACE.(Darlington Raceway)(4-16-2008)

  • Have Mom wave the green flag at Darlington: Looking for that perfect Mother's Day gift for your mom? Dodge Boys Racing has got a great suggestion for you! Simply visit www.dodgeboysracing.com and enter the Wave the Green Flag contest. Your mother (and three guests) could win an all-expense-paid travel package to the Dodge Challenger 500 Sprint Cup race at Darlington Raceway over Mother's Day weekend. Then, on Saturday, May 10, 2008, she could Wave the Green Flag to start the race! Simply fill out the required information-including your 100-words-or-fewer essay on why your mother should be declared the best NASCAR mom-and click on the Submit button. Or, if you're a mom and you want to enter your own name, go right ahead. But you have to hurry. Entries must be received by April 10, 2008. Visit www.dodgeboysracing.com and nominate your mom today to Wave the Green Flag at Darlington. Don't miss your chance to see another incredible finish at Darlington Raceway when the stars of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series take on the track "Too Tough to Tame" in the Dodge Challenger 500 on May 10, 2008. The racing action kicks off with the NASCAR Nationwide Series Diamond Hill Plywood 200 on May 9th. Order your tickets now by calling 1-866-459-RACE(Darlington Raceway PR)(4-1-2008)

  • 200 mph at Darlington: What a difference a paving makes: 200 miles per hour. That's how fast the Sprint Cup Series cars ran during Goodyear tire tests earlier this week at historic Darlington Raceway. That's not a miss-print. The Chevrolet of Jeff Gordon, the Ford of Greg Biffle and the Dodge of Daytona 500 winner Ryan Newman were all clocked unofficially at 200 mph at the end of this old track's smooth, newly re-paved backstretch. Darlington Raceway President Chris Browning almost couldn't believe it himself. "We had some of the telemetry numbers from the teams and I couldn't believe it when they told me they were hitting 200 mph at the end of the backstretch," said Browning. "That's incredible!" Jeff Gordon, a seven-time winner on the tricky, treacherous, 1.366-mile, egg-shaped oval, said the track was fast and smooth. "The old humps and bumps are gone," said Gordon. "It's still Darlington. It's just a lot smoother and a lot faster." Order tickts now by calling 1-866-459-RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(3-14-2008)

  • Paving Complete at Darlington: Paving of the racing surface at Darlington Raceway has been completed, track President Chris Browning announced today. "This begins a new chapter in the history books at Darlington Raceway," said Browning. "We are very excited to be finished with the paving so that we can now focus on preparing for the upcoming Dodge Challenger 500 race weekend, May 8-10." Paving at Darlington Raceway began in mid-January, took nearly 15,000 tons of asphalt to complete and replaced a surface that was laid in 1994. Construction crews utilized 4 million reference points around the legendary track to ensure that the transitions in the corners and banking stayed true to the track's original design. The new racing surface was part of a $10 million capital improvement project that also included an infield access tunnel large enough to accommodate car haulers, motor homes and emergency vehicles and the addition of SAFER barrier walls to interior concrete walls on the frontstretch and backstretch. "All of the upgrades that we have completed during this capital improvement project will play a vital role in the future of Darlington Raceway," said Browning. Next up at the track "Too Tough to Tame" is a Goodyear tire test on March 10 and 11. The two-day test session will be the first time race cars have been on the new pavement and will include seven-time Darlington winner, Jeff Gordon, two-time Darlington winner, Greg Biffle and 2008 Daytona 500 champion, Ryan Newman. The test will be closed to the public, but fans can logon to darlingtonraceway.com for updates. Order tickets and Colvin Grill all-you-can-eat package now by calling 1-866-459-RACE(Darlington Raceway PR)(3-5-2008)

  • Burton 1st driver to see new surface at Darlington: Construction crews working to repave Darlington Raceway received a visit from Sprint Cup Series driver Jeff Burton on Wednesday. Burton, driver of the #31 AT&T Mobility Richard Childress Racing entry, spent time talking with the crew working on the project and then went to work himself, driving a milling machine in turn 3. "I have never driven so slow at Darlington," joked Burton after he finished milling the asphalt in turn 3. "A project of this magnitude shows a commitment to Darlington Raceway, and that is something that race fans everywhere should be very pleased with." Burton, winner of the 50th Southern 500 (August 22, 1999), was also presented with a historic piece of the start-finish line by Darlington Raceway President, Chris Browning. Order your tickets and Colvin Grill all-you-can-eat package now by calling 1-866-459-RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-24-2008)

  • Darlington Raceway Wall under assembly: The infamous wall that has dashed so many Darlington dreams and caused countless "Darlington Stripes" began to take shape on Monday as crews re-assembled the outer SAFER barrier wall at Darlington Raceway. Paving began at the track "Too Tough to Tame" in the mid January and with the outer groove of the track complete, construction crews are now focusing on finishing the racing surface and infield access tunnel in advance of the 2008 Dodge Challenger 500. The new asphalt surface at Darlington Raceway is part of a $10 million dollar capital improvement project that began following the 2007 Dodge Avenger 500. In addition to the new racing surface, work is also underway to complete a new infield access tunnel large enough to accommodate race car haulers, motorcoaches and emergency vehicles. Order your tickets and Colvin Grill all-you-can-eat package now by calling 1-866-459-RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-5-2008)

  • New All-You-Can-Eat Ticket Package available at Darlington: Fans still in search of tickets for the May 10th Sprint Cup Series Dodge Challenger 500 at Darlington Raceway can now purchase an all-you-can-eat food and beverage ticket package to the new Colvin Grill. Ticket packages start at $60 for adults and $55 for children age 12 and under and can be purchased by calling 1-866-459-RACE. Each package includes seating in the Colvin grandstand and unlimited hamburgers, hot dogs, snack items and soft drinks in the Colvin Grill. Additionally, fans who have already purchased tickets for the 2008 Dodge Challenger 500 or plan to purchase tickets in a grandstand other than Colvin may add the all-you-can-eat package to their existing ticket for only $15 per adult and $10 per child under 12. Each fan who takes advantage of this unique offer will receive a special wristband valid for admission to the Colvin Grill adjacent to the Colvin grandstand outside of turn 2 at Darlington Raceway. The grill will open two-hours prior to the scheduled start of the Dodge Challenger 500 on May 10th and will close at the scheduled start time of the race. Fans are encouraged to act quickly as only a limited number of Colvin Grill ticket packages are available.(Darlington Raceway PR)(1-29-2008)

  • Paving begins at Darlington Raceway: Engine noise could be heard coming from historic Darlington Raceway on Monday well in advance of the 2008 Dodge Challenger 500. The engine noise came not from race cars, but from construction equipment being used to lay the first of two layers of new asphalt at the track "Too Tough to Tame." The new asphalt surface at Darlington Raceway is part of a $10 million dollar capital improvement project that began following the 2007 Dodge Avenger 500. In addition to the new racing surface work is also underway to complete a new infield access tunnel large enough to accommodate race car haulers, motorcoaches and emergency vehicles. Order tickets now by calling 1-866-459-RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(1-15-2008) Conversation

  • Race Cars return to Darlington on Labor Day Weekend: Darlington Raceway officials announced the thundering roar of racing engines will once again resonate around the legendary 1.366-mile oval on Labor Day weekend next year with the inaugural Darlington Historic Racing Festival August 30-31, 2008. The Darlington Historic Racing Festival will feature legendary cars and drivers from a variety of racing series, including NASCAR and Indy Car, from the 1950’s through the 1970’s. The festival will offer both the young and seasoned race fan a chance to meet the drivers and see the machines that made auto racing the hugely popular sport it is today. Racing personalities who have already agreed to participate include legendary driver and car owner Junior Johnson, Daytona 500 winner Buddy Baker, three-time NASCAR Cup champion Darrell Waltrip, ten-time Darlington Raceway winner David Pearson, championship car owner Bud Moore and former driver Cotton Owens. The Darlington Historic Racing Festival will offer fans two days of excitement featuring question and answer sessions with the legends, exhibition laps by the historic race cars, autograph sessions, a large display and vendor area, car carousels, and a variety of other activities. Tickets for the event are $15 per day or $25 for the entire weekend, kids age 12 and under will be admitted free. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(12-20-2007)

  • Craven helping out with removing Darlington S/F line: Ricky Craven is set to visit Darlington Raceway on Wednesday, December 5th at noon to lend a hand in extracting the current start/finish line. A section of the start/finish line will be donated to the NASCAR Hall of Fame as part of an exhibit which will include Craven's winning car in the 2003 Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 race, the closest finish in NASCAR history.(Darlington Raceway PR)(12-1-2007)

  • Darlington starts milling work on track: Construction crews at Darlington Raceway began milling the legendary track's surface last week. The milling process consists of grinding the existing asphalt surface an average of three-inches, and in some areas up to eight-inches, in preparation for the installation of the new surface. The milling process will be completed in approximately two-weeks.(Darlington Raceway PR)(11-30-2007)

  • Darlington starts repaving: Another historical moment took place last week on the hallowed grounds of legendary Darlington Raceway as paving crews began the intimidating challenge of repaving NASCAR's first paved superspeedway. The $10-million repaving project includes new asphalt around the entire 1.366-mile oval, concrete pit stalls and a new infield access tunnel underneath turn three. All construction will be completed in time for the Dodge Challenger 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekend, May 8 - 10, 2008.(Darlington Raceway PR)(11-6-2007)

  • Tickets for 2008 Darlington Races On-Sale Sept. 22: Darlington Raceway announced that tickets for the 2008 Dodge Challenger 500 weekend scheduled for May 9-10, will go on sale Saturday, September 22. This will be the first race on the recently repaved 1.366-mile high-banked egg-shaped oval known as the track "Too Tough To Tame". The Dodge Challenger 500, which has sold-out the past three consecutive years, will get the green flag under the lights at 7:00pm/et on Saturday night May 10th. Call the Darlington Raceway Ticket Office for more information or to order at 1-866-459-7223.(Darlington Raceway PR)(9-18-2007)

  • Check out Darlington Paving Project: Fans can now keep up with the progress of Darlington Raceway's repaving and tunnel construction project online, thanks to a new link on the track's website featuring both photo and video galleries of the work in progress. Along with still photographs, short videos are also included on the page. The videos, in addition to giving fans a look at the actual work under way, will also feature comments from engineers involved with the project, Raceway staff members, and other special guests. To access the paving page, simply log on to www.darlingtonraceway.com and click the link in the right-hand rail. The 2008 Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 weekend at Darlington is currently scheduled to include practice and qualifying for the Busch and Cup Series on Friday, May 9, followed by the Diamond Hill Plywood 200 that evening. On Saturday night, May 10, Darlington Raceway will host Cup Series racing for the 59th consecutive year when the green flag waves to signal the start of the Carolina Dodge Dealers 500. Jeff Gordon, a seven-time winner at Darlington, is the defending champion. Seat requests are now available for all events. For tickets or more information, call toll-free at 866.459.RACE (7223).(Darlington Raceway PR)(8-6-2007)

  • 2008 Darlington Raceway Renewal Process Currently Under Way: Renewal letters for next year's Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 weekend at Darlington Raceway were mailed on Friday, July 6. The renewal deadline is August 20. The track "Too Tough To Tame" is currently being repaved. The last time the track was repaved, in 1995, Ward Burton made fast work of the old record by posting a qualifying speed of 173.797 mph, a record that stands to this day. Fans renewing by the August 20 deadline will get the opportunity to drive paced laps on Darlington's brand-new asphalt on their choice of the following dates - March 29, April 5, or April 12, 2008. The 2008 Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 weekend is currently scheduled to include practice and qualifying for the Busch and Sprint Cup Series on Friday, May 9, followed by the Diamond Hill Plywood 200 that evening. On Saturday night, May 10, Darlington Raceway will host Cup Series racing for the 59th consecutive year when the green flag waves to signal the start of the Carolina Dodge Dealers 500. For tickets or more information, call toll-free at 866.459.RACE (7223).(Darlington Raceway PR)(7-12-2007)

  • Darlington repaving starts: Sometimes, it is necessary to tear down before building up. To that end, Darlington Raceway's repaving project began on June 18 with the removal of the track's SAFER barriers. Darlington's SAFER (Steel and Foam Energy Reduction) barriers were installed in February 2004 and saw their first competition during the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 weekend in March of that year. The summer solstice dawned on Darlington Raceway with a sense of déjà vu; the track's walls are currently concrete only. After completing Turns 3 and 4 earlier in the week, work on the retaining walls was finished on Wednesday afternoon, leaving the track looking rather like a special report on "The Weather Channel", featuring "hailstones the size of SAFER barriers." Scheduled completion date for the repaving project is November 30.(Darlington Speedway PR)(6-22-2007)

  • National Anthem at Darlington: Multi-platinum MCA recording artist and South Carolina native Josh Turner will perform the national anthem for the 2007 Dodge Avenger 500 at Darlington Raceway. Turner is best known for his big, deep baritone singing voice. Turner's recent accomplishments and accolades include back-to back multi-week number one hits on country radio with the singles "Would You Go With Me" and "Your Man." His current single "Me & God", a duet with music legend Dr. Ralph Stanley and members of Diamond Rio, was recently a #1 song in the Christian format and received an Academy of Country Music nomination for Vocal Event of the Tear.(Darlington Raceway PR)(5-9-2007)

  • NASCAR Mom's to give the command at Darlington: In 2005, Mother's Day weekend gave birth to a new tradition at NASCAR's most historic track. Collectively serving as grand marshal for the Dodge Charger 500 was a group of women well accustomed to giving commands to Nextel Cup Series drivers - their moms. The participating mothers walked across the pre-race stage and were introduced to the fans along with their sons. Then, as a group, they uttered the most famous words in motorsports, with a bit of a twist - "Sons and gentleman, start your engines!" The inclusion of the drivers' mothers in pre-race activities proved to be so popular with fans that the track decided to make their participation an annual event, in honor of Mother's Day. The list of mothers who will serve as grand marshals for the 2007 Dodge Avenger 500 includes (so far):
    * Carol Bickford (Jeff Gordon)
    * Mary Lou Hamlin (Denny Hamlin)
    * Ramona Vickers (Brian Vickers)
    * Marline Gordon (Robby Gordon)
    * Carol Mears (Casey Mears)
    * Linda Reutimann (David Reutimann)
    * Meredith Bowman (Jeff Burton, Ward Burton)
    * Becky Sorenson (Reed Sorenson)
    * Sue McMurray (Jamie McMurray)
    * Pam Boas (Tony Stewart)
    * Judy Gordon (Jeremy Mayfield)
    * Jana Bowyer (Clint Bowyer)
    * Martha Nemechek (Joe Nemechek)
    * Gaye Busch (Kurt and Kyle Busch)
    * Bell Sadler (Elliott Sadler)
    * Diane Newman (Ryan Newman)
    (Darlington Raceway PR)(5-8-2007)

  • Dodge Avenger 500 at Darlington sold out: Reserved grandstand seats for the 2007 Dodge Avenger 500, the 106th Nextel Cup Series race at Darlington Raceway, are sold out, track officials announced today. It is the third consecutive sellout since the race moved to Mother's Day weekend in May 2005. A very geographically diverse group of fans will watch the action at the track "Too Tough To Tame" on Saturday evening, May 12. Race tickets have been sold in 48 states, including Alaska and Hawaii, and the District of Columbia. International guests are traveling from Australia, Bermuda, England, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Norway, and the United Kingdom. "We are thrilled at the continuing excitement surrounding Darlington's Mother's Day weekend race date," said Raceway president Chris Browning. "The fans' enthusiasm and support has been truly overwhelming. The Car of Tomorrow will face its toughest test so far, the USAC Series is returning after more than 50 years, and our guests will see the final race run at Darlington before we begin our repaving project this summer. It's shaping up to be quite an eventful and historic weekend." Scheduled start time for the Dodge Avenger 500 is 7:30pm/et on Saturday evening, May 12. Infield admission tickets are still available for purchase. Tickets for the Diamond Hill Plywood 200 NASCAR Busch Series race on Friday evening, May 11, are also available. Tickets for all events on Thursday and Friday, as well as infield admission tickets for Saturday, are still available. For more information, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(5-7-2007)

  • Race weekend at Darlington has expanded its borders to become nearly a full week of activity, offering fans plenty of entertainment options when there is no action on the track. The week's highlights include the following:
    What: The Budweiser Clydesdales
    When: Tuesday through Saturday, May 8-12
    Where: Darlington Raceway, at the intersection of Hwy 151 and Racetrack Road (behind Turn 2)
    Info: Two legendary brands of horsepower will join forces on Mother's Day weekend as the world famous Budweiser Clydesdales, the symbol of quality and tradition for Anheuser-Busch since 1933, temporarily make their home in Darlington as part of Dodge Avenger 500 race week activities. The "Gentle Giants," as they are often called, will participate in the race festivities on Saturday, May 13 by making a pre-race parade lap around the track "Too Tough To Tame." The Clydesdales will be stabled at the track beginning Tuesday, May 8, and the public is welcome to stop by for a visit.
    Admission: Free

    What: A Taste of Darlington
    When: Tuesday, May 8, 7-9 p.m.
    Where: The Wachovia Hospitality Village, located at Darlington Raceway
    Info: This open-house style event, sponsored by the Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association, showcases the best of local cuisine. Highlights include grilling stations, dessert tables and over 100 varieties of hors d'oeurves.
    Admission: $30 per person, which includes all you can eat and an open bar. Tickets are available at the gate. Guests must be 21 or older.

    What: Darlington Car Hauler Parade
    When: Wednesday, May 9. Gates open at 4 p.m.
    Where: Florence Civic Center, located at the intersection of I-20 and I-95.
    Info: You've seen the cars travel around the track; now you can see how they travel around the country. In addition to the opportunity to see the haulers and meet the hauler drivers, Paradefest events include a kids' zone; food vendors; live entertainment; a silent charity auction; and the Budweiser Clydesdales. At 8:30 p.m., the haulers will leave the Civic Center and travel through downtown Florence on their way to Darlington. NASCAR VP of Corporate Communications Jim Hunter is the grand marshal for this year's parade.
    Admission: Free

    What: Racefest on the Square
    When: Wednesday, May 9. Activities begin at 6:30 p.m.
    Where: The Public Square in downtown Darlington.
    Info: After leaving the Florence Civic Center, the Car Hauler Parade will conclude in downtown Darlington with a street party-style race festival. Activities include live entertainment from the award-winning Coastline band, featuring Jim Quick; a car show; food, beverage and merchandise vendors; and a fireworks display sponsored by the Nucor Steel Corporation.
    Admission: Free
    Of special note: The post-race fireworks display at Darlington Raceway immediately following the Dodge Avenger 500 is also sponsored by Nucor. Nucor's bar mill opened in Darlington in 1969. The first of several regional bar mills, it became the prototype for today's vast mini-mill industry and launched Nuclear Corp. into a wide range of steel businesses.(5-4-2007)

  • Track Repaving, New Tunnel Top List of Projects at Darlington: Track officials announced that the Board of Directors of International Speedway Corporation (ISC) has approved more than $10 million in funding for capital projects at Darlington Raceway. Total estimated spending for the projects represents the largest one-time capital investment in the 58-year history of the storied facility. Scheduled projects include repaving of the racing surface and aprons, and the addition of concrete pit stalls. A new infield access tunnel, large enough to accommodate race car haulers as well as motorcoaches, will be constructed at the west end of the track. Projects also include suite renovations and the creation of additional fan parking areas. The track solicited input on the upcoming repaving project from several current drivers, along with team owners and engineers and representatives from NASCAR and the Goodyear Tire Company. Work will begin in the summer of 2007, following the Dodge Avenger 500 weekend May 10-12. On Saturday, May 12, Darlington will host Cup Series racing for the 58th consecutive season. The Dodge Avenger 500 will be run under the lights in its entirety. Tickets for all events are on sale now. For more information, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(4-5-2007)

  • Latest on Darlington repaving: Darlington Raceway president Chris Browning hopes to begin resurfacing NASCAR's oldest superspeedway shortly after the Mother's Day event in May. Although many drivers say resurfacing the track is a mistake, Browning said he has no choice. "It is beyond repair," he said.(ESPN.com)(3-31-2007)

  • Darlington could be repaved for 2008: Subject to approval of its board of directors, Darlington Raceway could join the growing list of speedways with new surfaces this year. Darlington President Chris Browning said officials at the raceway consulted with drivers and representatives of Goodyear during tire tests with the Car of Tomorrow at Darlington earlier this week. They wanted to get a feel for differences between the handling of the COT and the current car and how that might affect resurfacing of the track. Board approval could come as early as a month from now, Browning said. The year between the May 12 Nextel Cup race at Darlington and the 2008 event would provide ample time to complete the resurfacing.(source: Akron Beacon Journal)(3-17-2007)

  • Oh Say, Can You Sing? at Darlington: If you have always dreamed of having the opportunity to sing the national anthem at Darlington Raceway, your chance may have arrived. The track "Too Tough To Tame" is hosting a national anthem singing contest during the month of March. The winner will perform the anthem prior to the start of the "Silver Crown Showdown at Darlington" USAC race on Thursday evening, May 10. Aspiring singers can submit their performances by emailing an mp3 file to Darlington Raceway, or by mailing a CD or cassette recording. Email submissions may be sent to celliott@darlingtonraceway.com; CDs and cassettes should be mailed to Darlington Raceway, Attn: Cathy Elliott, PO Box 500, Darlington, SC 29540. Deadline for entry is Friday, March 30. All entries must include complete contact information. Finalists must be able to travel to Darlington on Wednesday, April 11. There is no age limit for entry, but in the event that a minor child wins the competition, he or she must be accompanied at all times by a parent or legal guardian. After reviewing the submitted anthems, track officials will narrow the field to three finalists, who will be invited to Darlington for the Dodge Avenger 500 Media Day in April. All three will perform the anthem at Media Day, and visiting driver Kasey Kahne will select the winner. All three finalists will receive tickets to the "Silver Crown Showdown at Darlington" on Thursday, May 10 and the Diamond Hill Plywood NASCAR Busch Series race on Friday, May 11. The grand prize winner, in addition to performing the anthem on May 10, will also receive tickets and pre-race pit passes for the Dodge Avenger 500 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race on Saturday evening, May 12. Tickets for all events are on sale now. For more information, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR/site)(3-14-2007)

  • Darlington Raceway receives SC Governor's Cup Award: Darlington Raceway has been awarded the state of South Carolina's prestigious 2007 Governor's Cup Award. The announcement was made on February 6th during the 42nd annual Governor's Conference on Tourism and Travel, the state's largest annual gathering of tourism industry leaders. The 2007 conference was held in Spartanburg, SC. The Governor's Cup Award is presented annually by SCPRT to an outstanding organization that has demonstrated a significant tourism-related impact on the state and local community, and which has markedly improved the quality of life for South After being nominated by the Darlington County Tourism office, the track was required to complete and submit a comprehensive project summary which included the following categories: Overview; Impact/Results; Community Service; Innovation; Creativity; and Unique Character. For more information on the Governor's Conference on Tourism and Travel, visit www.scgovcon.com. For more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, including the Dodge Avenger 500 weekend, May 11-12, call toll-free at 866.459.RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-17-2007)

  • Rock n' Roll and Racing at Darlington: Since 1950, race fans have annually flocked to South Carolina to experience the legendary 500-mile thrill ride known as Darlington Raceway. Soon, visitors will be able to get a similar adrenaline rush year-round thanks to the construction of the world's first rock and roll theme park in nearby Myrtle Beach. The Hard Rock Park is scheduled to open in the spring of 2008. Darlington Raceway and Hard Rock Park will work together to promote the Park during the 2007 Dodge Avenger 500 weekend, May 11-12, and to promote the Raceway at the HRP visitor's preview center, which will welcome guests at its grand opening on April 18th. For more information on the Hard Rock Park, visit www.hrpsua.com. The 2007 Dodge Avenger 500 weekend will include practice and qualifying for the Nextel Cup and Busch Series on Friday, May 11, followed by the Diamond Hill Plywood 200 NASCAR Busch Series race under the lights that evening. Denny Hamlin is the defending champion. On Saturday, May 12, Darlington will host Cup Series racing for the 58th consecutive season as Greg Biffle attempts to join the short list of drivers to win three events in a row at NASCAR's most historic venue. The 2007 Dodge Avenger 500 will be run under the lights in its entirety. Tickets for all events are on sale now. For more information, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-11-2007)

  • Open Wheelers at Darlington? Officials with the U.S. Auto Club [USAC] and Darlington Speedway's parent company, International Speedway Corp., are in discussions that could bring a USAC Silver Crown event to the 1.366-mile oval next year. "We've just had discussions, and that's as far as it's gone. We haven't talked about scheduling or anything yet," USAC president Rollie Helmling said from his Indian-apolis office. "But if the opportunity were to present itself and the fans at Darlington Raceway would like to see some open-wheel racing, we'd be honored to be there." The first step is a test, likely sometime this fall, to ensure the circuit's upright cars and Hoosier tires are compatible with Darlington's notoriously abrasive track surface. Then it's a matter of finding a place on Darlington's schedule, likely on the same Mother's Day weekend the Nextel Cup cars are scheduled to compete. "I think that's what they're talking about trying to do, tie it in to the Cup weekend," said Darlington president Chris Browning. "I wasn't really involved in the initial meetings, but I think that's what their wishes would be, and I think that would be the best way to tie it in given the fact that we've already got a large number of people here." One hitch: Darlington's Friday schedule is already packed, with qualifying and practice sessions for both Busch and Nextel Cup, and a Busch race that night. That could force the track to look at holding an event on Thursday night, Browning said. The Nextel Cup cars race on Saturday night.(Charleston Post and Courier)(10-3-2006)

  • No major changes at Darlington: After wrangling around $10 million out of parent company International Speedway Corp. for a lighting system and a new grandstand, Darlington Raceway was allotted money only for moderate improvements at an ISC board meeting last week. According to track president Chris Browning, Daytona Beach-based ISC approved a little less than $1 million for the Pee Dee facility to add a second television broadcast booth, expand the television compound, and buy some safety equipment. "It's still a substantial investment. But it's not the things we were hoping to get this time around," Browning said Monday. "But we did pretty well last year, so we'll just keep moving forward." Last year, Darlington was awarded $6 million by ISC to build the Brasington Tower, the track's new 6,225-seat grandstand in Turn 1. That came two years after ISC spent $4 million to install a lighting system at NASCAR's oldest major speedway. This year, Browning's wish list included new restrooms for two grandstands and the camping area, a place for motorcycle parking, and other cosmetic improvements. "It was disappointing, I'm not going to lie to you. But at the same time, and everybody here knows this, there are 11 racetracks competing for a certain piece of the pie. And last year, $6 million was a pretty big piece," Browning said. Browning said ticket sales for the track's 2007 event are 1,000 ahead of this time last year, and that renewal rates are also up. Darlington's last Nextel Cup event, held on the Saturday of Mother's Day weekend, sold out two weeks early and helped ISC turn a $30.7 million second-quarter profit.
    Darlington didn't submit a request to revamp its aging garage stalls, partly because Browning was advised to get a firmer estimate of such a high-dollar project. And looming within the next two to three years is a repaving of Darlington's 1.366-mile racing surface, an estimated $5 million undertaking that Browning believes might have led ISC to put other things on hold. Darlington's next chance at securing improvement funds could come at an ISC meeting in April, if the parent company hears capital improvement requests at that time. If not, Browning will have to wait until next September.(Charleston Post and Courier)(9-27-2006)

  • Tix for Darlington Cup race go on sale Sept 16th: Racing under the lights will return to Darlington Raceway on Mother's Day weekend 2007. The Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 on Saturday evening, May 12, will once again feature flag-to-flag NEXTEL Cup Series night racing at NASCAR's most historic speedway. Tickets will go on sale to the general public on Saturday, September 16. The 2007 Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 weekend will include practice for the Nextel Cup and Busch Series, qualifying for both series, and the Diamond Hill Plywood 200 NASCAR Busch Series race, all on Friday, May 11. On Saturday, May 12, the track "Too Tough To Tame" will host Cup Series racing for the 58th consecutive year. The 2007 Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 will be run under the lights in its entirety. Greg Biffle is the defending champion. Tickets go on sale Saturday morning, September 16. For tickets or more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(9-13-2006)

  • Renew your seats now for 2007 Cup Series racing at Darlington: Ticket renewal forms for the 2007 Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 at Darlington Raceway were mailed out on July 7. Race weekend is May 11-12, 2007. Fans who attended the 2006 Nextel Cup Series event at Darlington have the opportunity to renew their seats and request upgrades before tickets go on sale to the general public. Seats can be renewed by phone, by mail or online. The renewal deadline is August 21. Two payment options are available. Fans can choose either to pay in full at the time of renewal, or may select the 50/50 payment plan, with half the balance due on renewal and the remaining amount due on October 23. Those who have not received their renewal forms in the mail should call the Raceway ticket office toll-free at 866.459.RACE (7223). On Saturday, May 12, Darlington Raceway will host Cup Series racing for the 58th consecutive year. The 2007 Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 will be run under the lights in its entirety. Greg Biffle has won the event two years running. The deadline for ticket renewals is August 21. Any remaining tickets will go on sale to the general public on September 16. For more information, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE,(Darlington Raceway PR)(7-20-2006)

  • Darlington race safe for 2007: Darlington Raceway's place on next year's Nextel Cup schedule was all but secured last week, when track officials received a preliminary sanctioning agreement from NASCAR. Track president Chris Browning said he has received a "redline summary," which is a preliminary sanctioning agreement for next year with any changes outlined in red for quick reference. It's a precursor to a final sanctioning agreement, which Darlington should receive sometime this summer, and once signed will lock the Pee Dee track into a place on the 2007 schedule. "It's just part of the normal process," Browning said Thursday. "It's the same thing we go through every year."(Charleston Post and Courier)(5-13-2006)

  • Luke Perry named honorary starter for the Dodge Charger 500: Actor Luke Perry will wave the green flag to officially begin the Dodge Charger 500 on Saturday evening, May 13 at Darlington Raceway. In June 2006, Perry's latest project will make its debut. The one-hour drama "Windfall" follows 20 lottery winners after their unexpected good fortune, focusing on a close-knit foursome who have known each other since college. Perry stars as devoted husband and father of two Peter Schaefer. The series also stars Lana Parrilla and Jason Gedrick ("Boomtown"), and Sarah Wynter ("24").
    Although grandstand tickets for the Dodge Charger 500 are sold out, infield admission tickets are available. To be placed on the Dodge Charger 500 waiting list, or to purchase tickets for events on Friday or infield admission tickets for Saturday, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE, or purchase online at darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(5-10-2006)

  • Billy Dean to perform national anthem at Darlington: Curb Records recording artist Billy Dean will sing the national anthem prior to the start of the Dodge Charger 500 on May 13 at Darlington Raceway. He will also perform an acoustic pre-race concert on the main stage at approximately 5:30pm/et.(Darlington Raceway)(5-9-2006)

  • Darlington....Sons and gentlemen, start your engines! In 2005, Mother's Day weekend gave birth to a new tradition at NASCAR's most historic track. Collectively serving as grand marshal for the Dodge Charger 500 was a group of women well accustomed to giving commands to NEXTEL Cup Series drivers - their moms. The participating mothers walked across the stage and were introduced to the fans along with their sons. Then, as a group, they uttered the most famous words in motorsports, with a bit of a twist - "Sons and gentleman, start your engines!" The inclusion of the drivers' mothers in pre-race activities proved to be so popular with fans that the track decided to make their participation an annual event, in honor of Mother's Day. "Mother's Day weekend is a time to celebrate families," said Darlington Raceway president Chris Browning. "NASCAR is frequently described as a family sport, so it just seems natural to include everyone and to create one very special weekend at Darlington Raceway. We are excited about continuing to make the Mother's Day event at Darlington a marquee weekend, and one of the most popular stops on the circuit."
    The list of mothers who will serve as grand marshals for the Dodge Charger 500 includes:
    Carol Bickford (Jeff Gordon); Ramona Vickers (Brian Vickers); Becky Sorenson (Reed Sorenson); Martha Labonte (Terry and Bobby Labonte); Nancy Sterling (Carl Edwards); Gaye Busch (Kurt and Kyle Busch); Diane Newman (Ryan Newman); Mary Lou Hamlin (Denny Hamlin); Linda Truex (Martin Truex, Jr.); Bell Sadler (Hermie and Elliott Sadler); Margaret Waltrip (Michael Waltrip); Meredith Bowman (Jeff Burton); Jana Bowyer (Clint Bowyer); Joan Wimmer (Scott Wimmer); Susie Nolff (Scott Riggs); and Pam Boas (Tony Stewart). For tickets or more information, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE.(Darlington Raceway PR)(5-8-2006)

  • Darlington Cup Race Sells Out: Darlington Raceway has sold its last grandstand ticket for the Dodge Charger 500, a full two weeks before the Nextel Cup series visits the legendary Pee Dee track. Raceway officials announced Saturday night that the recently expanded 63,000-seat facility is sold out for the May 13 race. It's the earliest sellout in the 56-year history of the track, which once so struggled to sell tickets that its future as a NASCAR venue was constantly in question. "We had a lot of folks who weren't able to get tickets last year, and I think they called earlier this year," track president Chris Browning said.Even with 3,000 more seats to sell, Darlington sold out a full week earlier than it did last year, which had been the track's first sellout since the final Southern 500 in 2003. Prior to that, it hadn't sold out since expanding to 60,000 seats in 1997, and parent company International Speedway Corp. shipped one of its two dates out to Phoenix. Yet the move from a pair of afternoon races to one night event on the Saturday before Mother's Day proved the boost the track needed. Sales the last two years have Darlington and ISC thinking about more expansion on top of the new Turn 1 grandstand added this year.(Charleston Post and Courier)(4-30-2006)

  • Less than 8,000 seats left for Darlington race...expansion in the works?: Fewer than 8,000 seats remain for the Dodge Charger 500 and the strong sales have Darlington Raceway leaders thinking of expanding faster than they had imagined. Track president Chris Browning expects remaining tickets for the Nextel Cup event to be gone in two weeks. The steady run on tickets - Darlington remains around 8,000 tickets sold ahead of last year - got Browning and officials considering adding even more seats in time for a 2007 race. Browning says construction on a new, 6,300-seat grandstand in turn one should be complete by next week, more than a month ahead of the Dodge Charger 500 on Saturday night, May 13. Browning had figured the track would working on selling its increased tickets for a week or two. But demand for this year’s race has him itching to spring forward. “We’ve been running so far ahead for so long,” Browning said. “It’s got us considering and looking at our options.” Any additional construction would take place in the available area between the new grandstand and an access road behind turns one and two, Browning said. The additional seats bring the capacity at NASCAR’s oldest superspeeday to about 63,000. Browning hopes to revive discussions to return the Craftsman Truck series to Darlington and, with the Nextel and Busch races, create a triple-header weekend for fans.(Florence Morning News/AP)(3-30-2006)

  • Two classic cars added to museum collection: The Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum recently welcomed two additions to its classic car collection. The cars, both sporting the number 11, are on loan from legendary driver and car owner Junior Johnson. Cale Yarborough drove the #11 Busch Chevrolet to Victory Lane at Bristol in 1978, while Terry Labonte won two races in the 1985 #11 Budweiser Chevy. Johnson and Darlington Raceway president Chris Browning took time out from their unloading duties for a photo before the cars were moved into the museum, where they are currently displayed. The museum, which is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., is also home to the National Motorsports Press Association's Hall of Fame.(Darlington Raceway PR)(3-28-2006)

  • Bruton willing to buy Darlington - to move race back to Labor Day weekend: [Speedway Motorsports CEO Bruton] Smith said he would be willing to buy a track with an existing Nextel Cup date, for "$200 million to $250 million, something like that," to bring that date to Las Vegas [Motor Speedway]. And he said he was "trying every week" to make just such a purchase. "What we need to do is buy a speedway ... and I'm hoping one day somebody will give me a phone call or knock on the door, and within 15 minutes the deal will be done," Smith said. "They know I'm here and willing and can write a check." Smith also said he would be interested in buying Darlington Raceway, and picked a $100 million price tag - but not to move the date here, rather he said to return the Southern 500 to its historic Labor Day weekend, to "get it back where it belongs." Smith said his Speedway Motorsports operation is "six to seven years behind this sport. And we are going to work like hell to catch up.(Winston Salem Journal)(3-11-2006)

  • Darlington to get repaved: Darlington Raceway is slated to receive a new coat of asphalt sometime within the next two to four years. A centerpiece of Darlington's renaissance will be a repaving job, sorely needed for a grainy, worn surface marked by unsightly patches. But for track president Chris Browning, the challenge is to reinvigorate the old racetrack without changing its character; after all, the slick, slippery, tire-eating surface is a large part of Darlington's wicked reputation, and a large reason why so many drivers see it as the ultimate challenge on the NASCAR tour. "One of the things I've talked about with our asphalt and paving gurus down in Daytona, and one of the things I've challenged them with is, 'Look, guys, we've got a real racy place here. How can we repave this place and still keep it racy like it is now?' " said Browning, whose facility is owned by International Speedway Co., a company based in Daytona Beach, Fla., that operates 12 Nextel Cup venues. The repaving job, Browning said, will happen sometime in the next two to four years. There are no plans to alter the track's banking, which varies from 23 degrees in the narrow end to 25 degrees in the wider end. Repaving is but one part of an ongoing $6 million renovation project, which includes a new grandstand in Turn 1 that will increase Darlington's seating capacity by about 3,000 for the May 13 Dodge Charger 500. The infield tunnels have been refurbished, and plans are on the table to widen them when the track gets ripped up for repaving. Money has been set aside to improve the track's rest rooms, a project that may be completed before the 2007 race.(Charleston Post and Courier)(3-5-2006)

  • A Darlington deal for the Daytona 500 The 2006 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series season has finally arrived. On Sunday, February 19, the eyes of race fans all over the world will be focused on the state of Florida and racing's premier event, the Daytona 500. Darlington Raceway is offering a special one-day-only deal to celebrate the opening of the season at Daytona. Fans who purchase any grandstand ticket to the 2006 Dodge Charger 500, coming up Saturday, May 13 at the track "Too Tough To Tame," will receive a free pre-race pit pass. The pre-race pit pass allows access to the pit road area until one hour before the start of the race. This offer is valid only on Sunday, February 19 - race day at Daytona. Ticket prices for the Dodge Charger 500 start at $45. Fans can purchase their tickets and receive their free pre-race pit passes by calling toll-free at 866.459.RACE (7223), or by visiting www.racetickets.com, on Sunday, February 19.(Darlington Raceway)(2-18-2006)

  • Darlington Raceway grandstand progressing: The construction of a new 6,100-seat grandstand outside Turn 1 at Darlington Raceway is progressing according to schedule, according to the Elrod Corporation, the construction company which is overseeing the project. Estimated completion date for the tower, which has yet to be named, is early to mid-April. Seats in the new tower for the Dodge Charger 500 weekend, May 12-13, are now available by calling 866.459.RACE (7223).(Darlington Raceway)(2-9-2006)

  • New hospitality area added to Darlington infield: In the early days of racing, women were prohibited from entering the pit road area. To allow women some proximity to their loved ones during events, Darlington Raceway constructed a special seating area during the 1960s in the track's infield. Located inside Turn 2, this structure came to be known as the "Wives' Grandstand." As Darlington Raceway continues expansion and renovation projects, there is no longer any need for the Wives' Grandstand. The structure was recently removed to make way for the addition of Carolina Place, a new infield corporate hospitality area, which will be completed in time for the Raceway's Mother's Day weekend activities. The 2006 Dodge Charger 500 weekend will include practice and qualifying for the NEXTEL Cup and Busch Series on Friday, May 12, followed by the Diamond Hill Plywood 200 Busch Series race under the lights that evening. On Saturday, May 13, Darlington will host Cup Series racing for the 57th consecutive year. The 2006 Dodge Charger 500 will be run under the lights in its entirety. Greg Biffle is the defending champion. Tickets for all event are on sale now. For more information, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE (7223).(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-3-2006)

  • Darlington tickets part of Smithsonian collection: The Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum was the recipient of a valuable addition to its memorabilia collection on Wednesday, January 11. Fayetteville Christian School presented Raceway president Chris Browning with a complete set of original tickets from all three races run in Darlington during the track's 1950 inaugural season, including an AMA motorcycle race, a "Big Car" (later Indy car) race, and the legendary Southern 500 stock car event. More than 100 FCS middle-schoolers attended the press conference, prompting Browning to remark that the day represented a textbook blending of racing's past and its future. "It is so gratifying to look around the museum today and see what a valuable role Darlington Raceway has played, and will continue to play, in the evolution of NASCAR," he said. A matching set of Darlington Raceway tickets was presented to the Smithsonian Institution in the fall of 2005, where they reside as part of the museum's American History collection. Curator Ellen Hughes said the Smithsonian was thrilled to receive what she described as "valuable memorabilia from a sport that has grown from southern heritage to widespread national prominence." The Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and NMPA Hall of Fame are open daily from 9 am to 5 pm. Tickets for all events, icluding the Dodge Charger 500 on May 13th, are on sale now. For tickets or more information, contact the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE, or visit racetickets.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(1-15-2006)

  • Darlinton hires another Taylor: Darlington Raceway officials announced that Jeff Taylor has joined the full-time staff in the position of marketing director. Taylor, a Texas native, attended the University of Texas at Arlington, and served as a US Army intelligence analyst from 1992-98. In May of 1998, he joined the staff of Pikes Peak International Raceway/Pro Sports Management, where he worked as a senior sales executive until October 2005. "Jeff brings years of valuable experience in motorsports marketing to Darlington," said Raceway president Chris Browning. "We look forward to the opportunity of working with him and drawing on that experience as the track continues to expand and make improvements for the future." Taylor has four children - Megan, 13; Gabreal, 7, Caleb, 4; and Noah, 3.He lives in Hartsville, SC.(Darlington Raceway PR)(1-6-2006)

  • Darlington Raceway gets new Track Superintendent: H. Lee Taylor has joined the staff of Darlington Raceway in the position of Track Superintendent. Taylor replaces Sammie Yarborough, who retired in December after 15 years of service at the track. Taylor, who holds a degree from the Carolina College of Commerce, worked with Edens Enterprises, a trucking company in Columbia, SC, for 25 years before accepting a position as general manager for the Darlington County Water Department. After nine years with Darlington County, Taylor was named general manager of the Richland County (S.C.) Public Service District. "Lee has been a valuable worker at all of our race events for a number of years," said Raceway president Chris Browning. "He brings a strong knowledge of the track to this position, and we are thrilled to have him join the staff in a full-time capacity." Taylor and his wife Jean live in Darlington. They have three daughters; Reagan, Kristen and Keri.(Darlington Raceway PR)(1-5-2006)

  • Meet the stars of "Driver X" January 11 at Darlington Raceway: Fans can meet their favorite "Driver X" stars before the series finale airs in February at a special fan meet-and-greet event hosted by Darlington Raceway. As the series (airing Mondays at 8:00pm/et on Discovery Channel) enters its final episodes, the action now takes place in Darlington.
    Jack Roush and his team of judges pored over 1,700 applications and narrowed it down to a list of 25 drivers from across the United States, Canada and New Zealand in search of the best drivers to take part in this exclusive competition. After beginning the competition [known as the Gong Show] at Martinsville Speedway, 12 semi-finalists were then whittled down to four during summer 2005 filming at the track "Too Tough To Tame." The grueling three-week contest consisted of a battery of rapid-succession tests that challenged the competitors' physical and mental strengths as well as their media savvy and fan appeal.
    Fans will have an opportunity to meet several of the 12 semi-finalists, including Erik Darnell; Jason Hogan; Travis Kittleson; Danny O'Quinn; and David Ragan, at Darlington Raceway's "Driver X" fan event. The five drivers will visit the Raceway ticket office from 10 to 11:30 am on Wednesday, January 11, where they will be available to talk with fans by phone, meet them in person, and sign autographs.
    The identity of the winner will be revealed during the series' final episode on February 6. The winner will receive a contract for the 2006 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season with Roush Racing. The public is invited to attend. There is no charge for this event.
    NEXTEL Cup Series racing under the lights returns to Darlington on Mother's Day weekend 2006. Tickets for the Dodge Charger 500 on Saturday evening, May 13 are on sale now. The weekend also features qualifying for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup and Busch Series, plus the Diamond Hill Plywood 200 NASCAR Busch Series race under the lights, on Friday, May 12. For tickets or more information, contact the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE, or visit racetickets.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(1-5-2006)

  • New audio CD features great Darlington finishes: Holiday advertisements spotlighting the 2006 Dodge Charger 500, coming up May 13 at Darlington Raceway, describe race tickets as "the ultimate gift * 500 miles of excitement at NASCAR's most historic speedway." Now, fans who invest in future excitement at the track "Too Tough To Tame" can also experience eight unique pieces of its past. The new "Great Darlington Finishes" CD, a collection of eight audio segments featuring the Motor Racing Network's broadcasts of Darlington races dating back to 1985, will be given to fans free of charge with any Dodge Charger 500 ticket order placed November 24 through December 23. Produced by MRN, "Great Darlington Finishes" is narrated by award-winning broadcaster Eli Gold and showcases the contemporary era of Cup Series racing at NASCAR's original superspeedway. Running time is approximately 30 minutes. For tickets or more information, contact the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE, or visit racetickets.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(11-30-2005)

  • Darlington Grandstand removed: Darlington Raceway's ongoing renovation projects continued recently with the removal of the Brasington Grandstand from Turn 2. Brasington, constructed in 1965, was one of the last remaining covered grandstands in racing until the roof was removed in 2004 to accommodate the addition of lights at the track. The 3,300-seat grandstand bore the name of Harold Brasington, the Darlington developer whose vision of a race track designed specifically for stock cars ultimately became NASCAR's most historic venue. Additional seating for 6,300 fans will be erected in Turn 1, and will be completed in time for the Dodge Charger 500 in May 2006.(Darlington Raceway PR)(11-29-2005)

  • Darlington add seats and plans $6 million in improvements: On September 22, Darlington Raceway announced plans to commence work on an ambitious, $6 million capital improvement plan, which includes the addition of a 6,300-seat grandstand in Turn 1 and the removal of the Brasington Grandstand from Turn 2, for a net gain of approximately 3,000 seats at the historic facility. Construction will begin before the end of the year. The Turn 1 grandstand will be completed in time for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 weekend, May 11-13, 2006. In addition to the Turn 1 grandstand project, the corporate tower suites located outside Turn 3, as well as the infield suites in Turn 2, will be renovated and upgraded. Electrical service for 48 motorhomes will be installed in the competitors' parking area, giving every infield competitors' motorcoach parking spot at Darlington access to power. Other capital improvement projects at Darlington include rehabilitation of the east and west infield tunnels and relocation of all remaining overhead power lines to underground locations. For information up upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE, or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(9-23-2005)

  • Darlington's "Laps for Relief raises over $15k: On September 17, Darlington Raceway offered fans a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity * the chance to drive on NASCAR's original superspeedway. The event, called "Laps for Relief," was held in conjunction with the American Red Cross in response to Talladega Superspeedway's call to action to all its sister tracks in International Speedway Corporation (ISC) in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. According to figures released by the American Red Cross, the five-hour event raised over $15,000 in donations from race fans, who traveled from as far away as Kentucky, Ohio and Indiana for the chance to take five paced laps on the track "Too Tough To Tame."(Darlington Raceway PR)(9-23-2005)

  • Darlington Tix on sale Saturday: Tickets will go on sale to the general public on Saturday, September 10 for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 on Saturday evening, May 13 at Darlington Raceway. The inaugural Mother's Day weekend race at Darlington, in May 2005, was sold out. The 2005 Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 weekend will include practice for the NEXTEL Cup and Busch Series on Thursday, May 11. Friday, May 12 will feature a full day of race action, beginning with qualifying for both the Busch Series and NEXTEL Cup Series. The Busch Series drivers will follow up their qualifying efforts on Friday evening in the Diamond Hill Plywood 200. Matt Kenseth is the defending champion. On Saturday, May 13, the track will host springtime Cup Series racing for the 50th consecutive year. The 2006 Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 will be run under the lights in its entirety, a new Darlington tradition. Tickets for this exciting weekend go on sale Saturday morning, September 10. For tickets or more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE (7223), or log onto www.racetickets.com.(DR PR)(9-9-2005)

  • "Laps for Relief" at Darlington: For the first time in more than a quarter century, Darlington Raceway will open her gates and invite the public to take a drive on NASCAR's most historic track. "Laps for Relief" on Saturday, September 17, will raise money to lend support to millions of residents in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama affected by Hurricane Katrina. From noon to 5 p.m. on September 17, the public is encouraged to visit Darlington Raceway and, with any on-site monetary donation, will be allowed to drive five paced laps around the track "Too Tough To Tame" in their personal vehicles or on their motorcycles, led by the official pace car. All proceeds from the event will be given to the American Red Cross. Donations for Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief can also be made at www.racefanshelp.com, a new website launched last week by Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega, AL. As the track located closest to the areas affected by Katrina, Talladega is spearheading ISC's company-wide fundraising efforts. Beginning at Richmond International Raceway's Chevy Rock & Roll weekend September 8-10, ISC-owned tracks will begin facilitating the collection of monetary donations from race fans to the Red Cross in support of the Hurricane Katrina efforts.(Darlington PR)(9-7-2005)

  • Darlington tix on sale Sept. 10 for 2006: Racing under the lights will return to Darlington Raceway on Mother's Day weekend 2006. The Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 on Saturday evening, May 13, 2006, will once again feature flag-to-flag NEXTEL Cup Series night racing at NASCAR's most historic speedway. Tickets will go on sale to the general public on Saturday, September 10. Order your tickets online [darlingtonraceway.com] or call 866.459.RACE.(8-25-2005)

  • Darlington going after the Gong Show: Darlington Raceway does not have a second date this season, but that doesn’t mean the track will not be used. Track president Chris Browning said he is working on details of a deal to play host to the speed test for Roush Racing’s “Gong Show,” a driver discovery program that is being turned into reality television show for the Discovery Channel this fall. “It looks very positive,” he said. Geoff Smith, the president of Roush Racing, said Darlington’s unique egg shape would make it “fabulous place” to test a driver’s speed because few if any of the 25 finalists will have experience on the track. “We don’t want to give anybody an edge for experience,” he said, noting Greenville-Pickens Speedway is a candidate for the short track test. Browning said he also is exploring the possibility of building a karting track in the infield of NASCAR’s oldest superspeedway. By the end of the month, he hopes to sign the sanctioning agreement that will solidify next year’s Nextel Cup race on the Saturday night before Mother’s Day.(The State)(6-17-2005)

  • Darlington set for 2006...and 5 more years? UPDATE: Darlington Raceway, the oldest superspeedway on the NASCAR schedule and a track rumored to be losing its Nextel Cup date, apparently still has a future as well as a past. The venerable South Carolina speedway has gotten its NASCAR sanctioning agreement for 2006, officials close to the situation confirmed Thursday. It is “99 percent certain” that Darlington will keep its current date, on the night before Mother’s Day, for 2006, the sources said. Better yet, perhaps, Darlington’s parent company, International Speedway Corp., has committed to a five-year, multi-million-dollar plan to refurbish the track, which opened in 1950, sources said.(Speed Channel)(5-27-2005)
    UPDATE: Darlington Raceway officials have received a preliminary 2006 sanctioning agreement from NASCAR, a step that virtually ensures the South Carolina track will have a place on the Nextel Cup schedule next year. Sources told The Post and Courier on Friday that Darlington has received what is referred to as a "redline summary," a sanctioning agreement with the changes for next season outlined in red for quick reference. The next step is signing a final sanctioning agreement that would lock Darlington into a place on the 2006 schedule. NASCAR is in the process of negotiating prize winnings and other issues with its tracks for next year. Once those stipulations are agreed to, a sanctioning agreement is signed and the track has a race. Receiving a redline summary, according to one source, is a formality within that process. Darlington, which lost its fall race to Phoenix last season in a realignment of the Nextel Cup schedule, is coming off one of the best weekends in its 56-year history. The Pee Dee track sold out its 60,000 grandstand seats nearly a week before its first night race, which was held May 7. Since then, track officials have received only positive signs about their status for 2006. NASCAR officials have said nothing to shake the belief that Darlington will be on next year's schedule when it is finalized in a few weeks. "I think Darlington will be on the schedule next year," NASCAR vice president Jim Hunter said Friday at Lowe's Motor Speedway, site of Sunday's 5:30 p.m. Coca-Cola 600. Earlier this year, parent company International Speedway Corp. granted Darlington officials permission to explore capital improvements such as tunnel widening and restroom renovation. Track president Chris Browning was also given the go-ahead to formulate a five-year plan for larger undertakings such as grandstand expansion.(Charleston Post and Courier)(5-28-2005)

  • Darlington's start time to change? NASCAR Chairman Brian France hinted that there could be changes to the Darlington race next year because of its late finish last week. France made the comments to XM Satellite and a transcript was posted on nascar.com. Asked if something might be done because the Darlington raced finished after 11:30pm/et last week, France said: "I think they had 11 or 12 cautions and it was longer than anticipated and that may have us re-think, should it start half an hour earlier or something, I'm not sure. Of course, remember it finished later than we'd like, but that's a benefit to the West Coast people who were coming home from dinner or whatever the case is. But it doesn't matter, we have to finish it at a reasonable time and we'll adjust that if we have to."(Roanoke Times)(5-16-2005)

  • A Good Sign for Darlington 2006? on Darlington Raceway's website: "Darlington Raceway is currently taking deposits for the return of NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series action in 2006, don't miss out, get yours before they are gone" NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series returns to Darlington Raceway for another heart-pounding 500 miles around the "Track Too Tough To Tame!" The 2005 event was a compete sell out, so don't miss out again...get your tickets before they are gone!(5-8-2005)

  • Some interesting tidbits about Darlington Raceway: Harold King's title at Darlington Raceway is senior adviser to the track president. But the 81-year-old King, a volunteer at the track's first Southern 500 in 1950, is better known as ''Mr. Darlington.'' He estimates he has been to 95% of Darlington's NASCAR races since 1950, including years when he was an ambulance assistant. King's favorite trivia about NASCAR's oldest superspeedway:
    * At the first race, crews underestimated the toll the gritty surface would take on tires and went through the infield crowd buying spare tires from fans parked there.
    * The infield used to be home to ''The Blockhouse,''a cinderblock jail for drunks.
    * Infield admission to the first race was $1 a person, $5 for the vehicle. For years, fans would sneak in lumber in the back of pickups and then construct scaffolding so they could get a better view. People who slept overnight in the infield burned tires to stay warm.
    * For the first race, 5,000 were expected; at least 15,000 came. Track creator Harold Brasington put gate receipts in 5-gallon buckets.
    * With only one hotel in Darlington during the race's early years, fans came the night before and slept on the hoods of cars around the town square. Some Darlington homes took in fans, setting up cots in front rooms.
    * To put down rubber to help traction on the track, townspeople were urged to drive their cars on it in the days before the race.
    * Seats on today's backstretch used to be covered with a pavilion-like roof, but it had to be removed as cars became faster because it contained the noise.
    * In 1965, when the track was surrounded by a metal guardrail instead of today's concrete wall, NASCAR legend Cale Yarborough (from nearby Timmonsville) crashed and sailed over the railing and off the track, out of view. The crowd was silent until Yarborough, after scrambling uphill on hands and feet, came back into view and waved. For years, the car's flight was a staple of the introduction to ABC's Wide World of Sports. See full article and more tidbits at the USA Today.(5-6-2005)

  • Darlington race worth $25-$30 million to economy: The S.C. Department of Commerce estimates that each race directly contributes between $25 million and $30 million to the local economy. With only one race, and that race being held on Mother’s Day weekend, many feared that businesses would suffer. That’s why there was an all-out effort to sell out the Dodge Charger 500 on Saturday. Mother’s Day is considered to be a hindrance to ticket sales, but raceway officials turned it into a positive. “They marketed it as a weekend away for mothers,” said Dave Bailey, economic development director for Darlington County. “And since the race is on Saturday, and not actually on Mother’s Day, I think it helped them a lot.”(Morning News)(5-6-2005)

  • Dodge Charger 500 a sellout: Reserved grandstand seats for the Dodge Charger 500, the 104th NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at Darlington Raceway, are sold out, track officials have announced. The sellout is the earliest at Darlington since the 1997 Mountain Dew Southern 500, when the track had approximately 10,000 fewer seats than its current seating capacity. Infield admission tickets and reserved infield RV parking spots are still available for purchase. Fans can also be placed on the waiting list by calling the ticket office toll-free at 866.459.RACE. Good seats do remain for the events on Friday, May 6. This very full day of race action begins with qualifying for both the NASCAR Busch and NEXTEL Cup Series. The NASCAR Busch Series will follow up their qualifying efforts on Friday evening in the Diamond Hill Plywood 200.(Darlington Raceway)(5-4-2005)

  • Drivers Moms to give the command at Darlington: To celebrate the beginning of a new racing tradition at Darlington Raceway, Mother's Day weekend under the lights, the track plans to officially include the drivers' mothers in the Dodge Charger 500 pre-race ceremonies. The participating mothers will walk across the stage and be introduced along with their sons. Then, as a group, they will utter the most famous words in motorsports, with a bit of a twist - "Sons, and gentlemen, start your engines!" The list of mothers who have agreed to participate so far includes Jeff Gordon's mother, Carol Bickford; Pam Boas, Tony Stewart's mom; Diane Newman, mother of Ryan Newman; Dale Jarrett's mom, Martha Jarrett; Kyle Petty's mom, Lynda Petty; Ramona Vickers, mother of Brian Vickers; and Susie Nolff, mother of Scott Riggs. "Mother's Day weekend is a time to celebrate families," said Darlington Raceway president Chris Browning. "NASCAR itself is often referred to as a family sport, so it just seems natural to include everyone and to create one very special weekend at Darlington Raceway. We know the fans will be thrilled to meet the drivers' mothers. We're excited about all the possibilities of our new race date and look forward to making Mother's Day weekend at Darlington one of the most popular stops on the circuit."(Darlington Raceway)(5-4-2005)

  • Craig Woolard to perform national anthem at Darlington: Two of the most familiar sounds of the Southeast - stock car engines and Carolina beach music - will come together at Darlington Raceway on May 7 as Craig Woolard performs the national anthem prior to the Dodge Charger 500. Woolard, lead singer for legendary beach music band The Embers for 27 years, was named both Male Vocalist of the Year and Producer of the Year at the 2002 Carolina Beach Music Awards. He was also honored for Song of the Year in 2002 for "Love Don't Come No Stronger," the longest-charting beach music song of all time. "Love Don't Come No Stronger" is featured on "Totally Beach: For the Kids," a beach music compilation CD recorded earlier this year to benefit the Victory Junction Gang Camp. Woolard, backed by the Craig Woolard Band, will perform "Love Don't Come No Stronger" and other beach music classics during a pre-race concert on the start-finish line stage. The show is scheduled to begin at 5:45. For more information on the Victory Junction Gang Camp or the "Totally Beach: For the Kids" CD, visit www.victoryjunction.org.(Darlington Raceway)(5-3-2005)

  • Darlington Cup race sold out: Darlington Raceway was assured that NASCAR’s oldest superspeedway would have its first sellout before race day and only the second since the track expanded to 60,000 seats in 1997. 428 tickets remained for the May 7 Nextel Cup race around noon Saturday. Also the ISC board gave the track permission to develop with a five-year plan that includes expansion and facility improvements.(The State), sounds like we will have at least one Cup a year at Darlington for the near future.(5-2-2005)

  • 1800 Tix left for Darlington: NASCAR's return to Mother's Day weekend, thanks to brisk ticket sales for Darlington Raceway's upcoming Dodge Charger 500. Track Predident, Chris Browning said the track had only about 1,800 tickets remaining for the event as of Tuesday morning, raising the possibility that the 60,000-seat facility could have a sellout in the bank nearly a week before the green flag drops. Sellouts at Darlington have been rare, advance sellouts almost unheard of. The track's last sellout was in 2003, when the Southern 500 was run for the final time on its traditional Labor Day weekend spot. The final few tickets for that event weren't sold until the morning of the race. Prior to that, the track hadn't sold out since expanding to its current seating capacity in 1997. Darlington fell less than 200 tickets short of selling out the final Southern 500 last November. That race date was moved to another International Speedway Corp. facility in Phoenix, leaving Darlington with only one annual event, that on a weekend with a bad track record. Browning credits the track's new lighting system -- next week's race will be Darlington's first full night Nextel Cup event -- and a different marketing strategy with helping to accelerate ticket sales. He said officials like state Sen. Hugh Leatherman and Florence Mayor Frank Willis helped track executives meet with regional business and industry leaders, who were urged to use race tickets as incentives for employees or tokens of appreciation for customers.
    An advance sellout certainly won't hurt Darlington's chances of remaining on the Nextel Cup schedule for another year. Slow ticket sales and relatively small crowds, especially for the track's old March race, were what put Darlington on the realignment bubble in the first place. Now, the 56-year-old facility hopes for more infrastructure improvements that will ensure a long-term future in NASCAR.(Charleston Post and Courier)(4-28-2005)

  • Darlington hopes to announce sellout: Darlington Raceway officials hope to announce within the next two weeks their first sellout prior to race day since the track expanded to 60,000 seats in 1997. Only about 3,000 tickets remain for the first-ever night Nextel Cup race at Darlington on May 7. A sellout would enhance the track’s position to keep its remaining Cup date and make a case for expansion. The only other sellout since expansion came two years ago at the final running of the Southern 500 on Labor Day weekend. Track president Chris Browning is preparing a five-year plan that includes expansion for a presentation at the fall meeting of International Speedway Corporation board. Among the attractions for the upcoming race will be an appearance by Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the Dale Jr. Experience Tent in the Wachovia Hospitality Village outside Turn 3. Earnhardt will be in the tent from 3:30-5:30 p.m. on race day. A limited number of tickets will be sold for the event at $80 each. Those wishing to attend the Saturday night Cup race or the Friday night Busch Series Race can order tickets by calling the Raceway ticket hotline at (866) 459-7223.(The State)(4-23-2005)

  • Darlington Day: Darlington Day looked back on the legacy of racing in South Carolina and supports its future. Drivers like Jeremy Mayfield and Tony Stewart spent the afternoon at the Governors Mansion Tuesday. It's an effort to rev up ticket sales for the upcoming race and to look back on the tradition of racing in South Sarolina. The Southern 500 left South Carolina and it was devastating for many race fans in the Palmetto State. Stock car racing's original superspeedway will once more serve as a groundbreaker for NASCAR, inaugurating an entirely new race weekend in May. The NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series' 104th visit to Darlington Raceway will take place on Mother's Day weekend, and will be Darlington's first-ever full weekend of night racing. Racing represents much more than entertaining fans of the sport. Each of the races generates about $30 million for the state. Chad Prosser is with the state's parks and tourism, ""Absolutely. The NASCAR fans are wonderful fans, and they are a big economic base, not only for NASCAR, but for the state as a destination. We use these races not only to sell the Pee Dee area, but to sell the state as a whole." State leaders say it is important for fans to pack the stands to show NASCAR racing at Darlington won't be left in the dust. Get more information on the Dodge Charger 500 Weekend by calling (843) 395-8499.(WIStv.com Columbia, SC)(4-13-2005)

  • Darlington Expects to keep race: Darlington Raceway's Chris Browning said he's confident the France family's International Speedway Corp. will keep the legendary Sandhills speedway up and running after this May's Mother's Day weekend race. Many people in the sport fear that ISC is poised to close Darlington at the end of the season, just as it closed the Rockingham track last year (by selling it to promoter Bruton Smith), and possibly sell the Nextel Cup tour date to Smith for a second Cup event at Las Vegas. Browning points to last Wednesday's board meeting that tentatively approved a major capital improvements program: "Additional rest rooms, rebuilding the tunnels, repaving the track - a lot of things are on the drawing board, and they've given me the go-ahead to lay out a five-year plan from a capital standpoint," Browning said. However, Browning concedes a lot is riding on how well this spring's race weekend comes off. The Mother's Day weekend is seen in some quarters as the kiss of death, and the ISC has been accused of picking that weekend with the idea that a failure would provide the ammunition for the sale of the track as a non-productive facility. "I believe the ISC is firmly behind Darlington, when you look at the $3.5 million investment in the lights, and the SAFER barriers (soft walls), and the fact we just got funds approved for future construction projects. We're 7,000 tickets ahead right now from last November's race, which we were within just a couple hundred tickets of selling out. So I'm very, very happy with Mother's Day. We don't have to worry about the hurricanes we did on Labor Day. We're the first race in the Carolinas, and the weather is perfect." Browning says the track officials are talking with neighboring property owners about purchasing land. The track is severely land-locked. "They know when we build more seats we'll need more property, and they're willing to help us," Browning says. The 2006 negotiations will start in June, "And I don't anticipate knowing anything until mid-June," Browning said.(Winston Salem Journal)(4-11-2005)

  • 2006 Schedule, bidding for finale? Darlington race date to be sold? UPDATE Denied: NASCAR executives are working on the 2006 Nextel Cup tour schedule, and one suggestion from teams in the garage is for NASCAR to move the season finale to different tracks, as the Super Bowl is moved, with that date up for bids to the track owner willing to post the largest purse. But there are indications that the International Speedway Corp.[ISC] may be willing to sell Darlington Raceway and its lone remaining Cup tour date to track owner Bruton Smith, to move that tour date to Las Vegas, for a Cup event during the last 10 weeks of the 2006 season. And Smith would be willing to bid on being the host for the season finale at Las Vegas Speedway.(Winston Salem Journal)(4-4-2005)
    UPDATE: Darlington Raceway president Chris Browning got a call Tuesday that sent him scrambling: Was International Speedway Corp. contemplating a sale of the old country track to its rival? So Browning, who was displaced when North Carolina Speedway in Rockingham was sold last year, called down to the company's Daytona Beach, Fla., headquarters to find out. "They told me, 'Hey, nothing to it, buddy,' " Browning told The Associated Press. "That was good enough for me. There's absolutely no truth to the rumors whatsoever," he said. "I don't know where they got started." Smith was unavailable Tuesday and the company doesn't comment "on speculative opinions expressed by other sources outside the company," spokesman Jerry Gappens said. Smith has said previously he would "welcome the opportunity to explore additional NASCAR-sanctioned events at Las Vegas Motor Speedway," Gappens said. International Speedway Corp. spokesman David Talley said there's been no talk of selling Darlington, which has hosted NASCAR events since 1950. His company's focus, he said, is developing tracks in the New York City area and the Pacific northwest. Also, recent improvements at Darlington like its multimillion-dollar lighting system mean "you can surmise that we are very behind the track," Talley said. Browning expects to announce more capital improvements in the coming weeks that will add to the track's viability.(CNNSI/AP) AND Jim Hunter, NASCAR’s vice president for corporate communications, said that’s not the case. “Bruton said something to the affect if Darlington was for sale, he would be interested in buying it,” Hunter said. “In the liberal translation of that it has become ‘planning to buy it. But it’s not for sale. There are no plans for it to be for sale. There’s absolutely no merit to that rumor.”(The State)(4-6-2005)

  • Bruton looking to buy Darlington? UPDATE: Bruton Smith, whose Speedway Motorsports owns Atlanta Motor Speedway, is making noise over getting another Cup date for one of his tracks [Las Vegas]. Speculation has it that Smith is looking at buying Daytona Beach-based International Speedway Corporation's Darlington Speedway -- now pared to one Cup date -- closing it down and plugging its Cup date into one of his tracks, elsewhere.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(3-20-2005)
    UPDATE: The future of Darlington Raceway is again the subject of speculation - that the France family's International Speedway Corp. may sell the South Carolina track to promoter Bruton Smith so he can move Darlington's remaining Nextel Cup date to Las Vegas Speedway next season [and squash the Atlanta to Vegas runor]. The Frances were on the verge of selling Darlington to Smith last year, for just such a Cup swap, only to back off at the last moment. One reason for adding a second date in Las Vegas would be to increase the value of NASCAR's pending new TV contracts, currently under negotiation.(Winston Salem Journal)(3-21-2005)

  • Southern 500 coming back in 2006? UPDATE 3 No Plans: ESPN Magazine is reporting [Dec. 6th page 140] that Labor Day racing may return to Darlington [Raceway] as early as 2006. NASCAR were concerned at the negative reaction to the mothballing of the 54-year-old Southern 500, and that was before LA [Los Angeles] TV stations bailed on the race at Fontana, CA [California Speedway, Sept 5th on NBC], Darlington's replacement, in favor of baseball.(ESPN Magazine)(12-1-2004), been told that the NBC affilaite in LA doesn't carry baseball, so not sure of that reference.
    UPDATE: from an ESPN Insider chat with NASCAR President Mike Helton when asked about the 'return' of the Southern 500: "The 2005 schedule that has been released shows the only Darlington race being on the Saturday before Mother's Day. Since we only plan one year at a time, that is the most current answer."(ESPN.com Insider)(12-8-2004)
    UPDATE 2 - California could lose a 2nd date? Among the rumors at the Nextel Media Tour in Charlotte, N.C., is that one of California Speedway's two NASCAR dates could be in trouble. Mind you, it's strictly something said and repeated but never finding its way into print. After all, it's rather silly to even think about. Absurd is perhaps a better adjective. NASCAR, track owner International Speedway Corp. and the controlling France family went to great lengths to realign the schedule in 2004 to give Fontana its Labor Day Sunday night event. To even propose such a thought after one race is unthinkable. However, it indicates someone somewhere is concerned about whether NASCAR will ever catch on in Southern California. Apparently, selling 93,000 seats or so, not to mention another 15,000 in the infield, isn't enough for some. There have been published reports in various Southern newspapers that California Speedway is encountering problems selling tickets for the Feb. 27 Auto Club 500.(more at the Daily Bulletin)(1-28-2005)
    UPDATE 3 - No plans to return Darlington's race to Labor Day: Darlington won’t get its date back. NASCAR president Brian France said there are no plans to give Darlington Raceway back its traditional Labor Day weekend date despite published reports that the track with that date might lose a race. He also didn’t totally close the door. “That’s always possible,” he said. “But I think they want to build their equity on the Saturday night race Mother’s Day weekend, and they’re very focused on doing that.” Speculation that California Speedway might lose the Labor Day date it inherited from Darlington last year surfaced during NASCAR’s media tour in Charlotte two weeks ago.(The State)(2-11-2005)

  • the race at Darlington now the "Dodge Charger 500": The all-new Dodge Charger is expected to be in showrooms in June. To build awareness for the Charger, the Carolina Dodge Dealers and Darlington Raceway have agreed to name the May 7th Nextel Cup Series race the "Dodge Charger 500". A new race logo, designed with the Charger Hemi orange color, fuels the passion of the earlier era and bridges it to today. On Saturday, May 7, Darlington will host springtime Cup Series racing for the 49th consecutive year. The 2005 Dodge Charger 500 will be run under the lights in its entirety, opening a new chapter in Darlington's long and storied history. Jimmie Johnson won both NEXTEL Cup Series events at Darlington Raceway in 2004. Tickets for all events are on sale now. For more information, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE, or log onto to www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-2-2005)

  • Free Shuttle Servcice at Darlington: Activities at Darlington Raceway on Sunday, November 14 will begin well before the green flag waves to begin the final running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500. You won't want to miss anything, so why worry about fighting the traffic? Darlington Raceway and the Pee Dee Regional Transportation Authority (PDRTA) are offering free shuttle service to and from the track for the Mountain Dew Southern 500. Fans wishing to take advantage of this service have two options - be picked up, or park and ride. Pickups will be available at various hotels in the area beginning at 8:30 a.m. on November 14. Participating hotels include Sleep Inn; Red Roof Inn; Guesthouse Inn; Fairfield Inn; Holiday Inn and Suites; Comfort Inn; Days Inn; Suburban Extended Stay; EconoLodge; Thunderbird Inn; and Best Western.
    The park-and-ride shuttle service will also begin at 8:30 a.m. Departure point in Florence is the Florence Civic Center, located at the intersection of I-95 and I-20. Both the park-and-ride and hotel pickup shuttles are free. Return service from the track will begin immediately following the conclusion of the Mountain Dew Southern 500. For more information contact PDRTA at 843.665.2227. For tickets or more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE (7223), or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(11-11-2004)

  • Thursday admission fee waived in honor of Veterans' Day: Thursday, November 11 promises to be a busy qualifying and practice day for the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series as they prepare for the first-ever night race at Darlington, the Darlington 200, coming up on Friday evening, November 12. Since the birth of America, the US Armed Forces have diligently worked to protect and ensure its citizens' safety. On Thursday, November 11, Americans will once again celebrate Veterans' Day. The holiday was enacted by Congress in 1926 to officially recognize the end of the first global conflict -- World War 1. In honor and recognition of Veterans' Day, Darlington Raceway will waive admission fees for all guests on November 11. Fans are invited for a complimentary "sneak preview" of Friday evening's race, another landmark event in Darlington's long history. Friday will also feature qualifying for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup and Busch series, beginning at 1:30 p.m. Published start time for the Darlington 200 is 8 p.m. Bobby Hamilton is the defending champion. The weekend continues on Saturday, November 13, with the BI-LO 200 NASCAR Busch Series race. Start time for that event, won last year by Brian Vickers, is 1 p.m. Sunday, November 14 will feature the 55th, and final, running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500, the penultimate race in the Chase for the NEXTEL Cup. This legendary event was first run in 1950, but will see its inaugural checkered flag under the lights in 2004. Terry Labonte is the defending race champion. Published start time is 1:30 p.m. For tickets or more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE (7223), or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(11-8-2004)

  • ISC Plans to Keep Darlington Open: Millions of dollars in improvements and plans for future upgrades offer the best evidence that Darlington Raceway will remain a fixture on the stock-car racing scene. That is the view of Paul Phipps, vice president and chief marketing officer of Darlington’s parent company, the International Speedway Corporation. “We love Darlington and its tradition,” said Phipps, who was in Columbia [SC] on Thursday to address USC’s International Conference on Sport and Entertainment Business. “We would not have made the investments we have and then close the track.” In the past decade, ISC has built more than 30,000 new seats to boost capacity to approximately 60,000. Garage areas have been improved and officials installed “soft walls” last year. A new lighting system will be used for the first time next weekend.(The State)(11-5-2004)

  • Sad News: Erin Carleton Browning, the 10-year-old daughter of Darlington Raceway president Chris Browning, died Monday after a long battle with bone cancer. Erin was diagnosed with the disease three years ago. Her father, Chris, was named the track's president this past May to replace Andrew Gurtis. Browning had been at North Carolina Speedway at Rockingham since 1992. He assumed the new position after the track, known as "The Rock," was taken off the next year's Nextel Cup schedule. Darlington is preparing to hold the Southern 500 in two weeks, the next-to-last event in NASCAR's 10-race championship chase. Mac Josey, Darlington vice president, will run day-to-day operations while Browning is away. Funeral services for Erin will be Wednesday in High Point, N.C.
    In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations in memory of Erin Browning be made to the following:
    - Victory Junction Gang Camp, 4500 Adam's Way, Randleman, N.C., 27317.
    - Hospice and Palliative Care Center, 1100-C South Stratford Road, Winston-Salem, N.C. 27103.(ThatsRacin.com/AP and see her site at prayforerin.tripod.com)(11-2-2004)

  • The final Southern 500 to end under the lights: It is fairly common knowledge by now that the first official night race at Darlington will be the Darlington 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event on Friday evening, November 12. Some confusion remains, however, on the subject of exactly when NASCAR's premier series will see race action under the lights. To help answer those questions, the track "Too Tough To Tame" has set a date with the stars of the NEXTEL Cup Series. At 4:30pm/et on Sunday, November 14, Darlington Raceway will throw the switch and shine the lights on the Mountain Dew Southern 500 for the first time in history. "The phones have been ringing off the hook with fans asking how much of the race will actually be run under the lights," said Mac Josey, vice president of Darlington Raceway. "We hope that announcing exactly what time we will turn on the lights will clear things up. Many people have waited a long time for this moment, and we don't want them to miss it."
    Scheduled start time for the race is 1:30pm/et. Running time for last year's Mountain Dew Southern 500 was four hours, nine minutes. Night racing makes its official Darlington debut on Friday, November 12 with the Darlington 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race. Published start time for the race is 8 p.m. Bobby Hamilton is the defending champion. Friday will also feature qualifying for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup and Busch series, beginning at 1:30pm/et. The weekend continues on Saturday, November 13 with the BI-LO 200 NASCAR Busch Series race. Start time for that event, won last year by Brian Vickers, is 1:00pm/et. Sunday, November 14 will feature the 55th, and final, running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500. This legendary event was first run in 1950, but will see its checkered flag wave under the lights for the first time in 2004. Terry Labonte is the defending champion. For tickets or more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 866.459.RACE (7223), or visit darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(11-3-2004)

  • Wedding Packages at Darlington: If your idea of a perfect wedding day includes the words, "Gentleman, start your engines," that particular dream can become a reality on November 14 at Darlington Raceway. Darlington Raceway's fall 2004 wedding package includes a marriage ceremony in Gatorade Victory Lane on Sunday morning, prior to the Mountain Dew Southern 500; four pre-race pit passes; a souvenir program; a commemorative event souvenir; and embroidered Darlington Raceway caps for the bride and groom. Cost for the package is $200. Participants must be 18 years of age or older and provide photo identification and a valid South Carolina marriage license. South Carolina marriage licenses may be obtained from any Probate Court office in the state. If you are traveling to Darlington from out of state and need information on how you can obtain a South Carolina marriage license after you arrive, call the Darlington County Probate Court office at 843.398.4310. For more information or to schedule your November 14 wedding at Darlington Raceway, contact Deena Shelley in the Raceway ticket office toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE (7223). Wedding packages must be scheduled in advance; only a limited number are available. Racing under the lights comes to Darlington Raceway November 12-14. For more information on the Darlington 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race on Friday evening, November 12, the South Carolina 200 on Saturday, November 13, or the 55th running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500 on Sunday, November 14, contact the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE (7223).(Darlington Raceway PR)(9-5-2004)

  • Darlington Lights 'em up: Darlington Raceway's half-century of tradition changed in a flash Tuesday night with the debut of its multimillion dollar lighting system. Just before twilight, officials threw the seven switches that lit up exterior lights at "The Lady in Black," NASCAR's oldest superspeedway that debuted in 1950. Jeff Gordon, the Nextel Cup points leader and a six-time Darlington winner, headlined an exhibition program that also featured truck series points leader Bobby Hamilton and all-time racing greats David Pearson and Cale Yarborough. Each driver cruised 10 laps around Darlington in front an estimated 12,000 to 15,000 fans — much larger than the usual crowds for Friday qualifying and Saturday Busch races — who got in free for the night show. When he finished, Gordon stopped on the start-finish line and jumped on top of his #24 Chevrolet to wild applause.(USA Today/AP)(8-25-2004)

  • TONIGHT - Lights go on at Darlington, fans welcome: Not all of the activity at Darlington Raceway's upcoming facility lighting exhibition on Tuesday, August 24 will take place on the track. From 7 to 8 p.m., fans are invited to join Eli Gold as he hosts MRN's "NASCAR Live" program from Gatorade Victory Lane. This one-hour telephone talk show is devoted exclusively to NASCAR racing, and gives listeners an opportunity to talk directly to the superstars of the sport.
    On August 24, the show will focus on the first laps ever run under the lights at the track "Too Tough To Tame." The four participating drivers will also be Gold's guests on "NASCAR Live" - David Pearson, Darlington's all-time winner with 10 victories; Cale Yarborough, the only driver to win three consecutive Cup Series championships and tied for all-time wins in the Mountain Dew Southern 500; Bobby Hamilton, winner of two of Darlington's three NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races to date, and current win leader in the 2004 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series; and Jeff Gordon, four-time Cup Series champion. Gordon leads all active drivers in wins at Darlington Raceway (six), and is tied with Yarborough for all-time Mountain Dew Southern 500 wins (five).
    Gates will open to the public at 6 p.m. The first laps will be run at approximately 8:15 p.m. Admission is free.
    Sunday, November 14 will feature the 55th, and final, running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500. This legendary race was first run in 1950, but will see its inaugural checkered flag under the lights in 2004. Terry Labonte is the defending race champion. Published start time is 1:30 p.m. For tickets or more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE (7223), or log online.(8-24-2004)

  • Josey named Darlington Raceway VP: Track officials announced that Mac Josey has been named vice president of Darlington Raceway. Josey has served in many capacities at the track since joining the staff in 1990, including ticket office manager and director of ticketing. Most recently, he was named to the position of general manager in 2001. He will assume the title of vice president immediately. Josey is a graduate of Francis Marion University in Florence, SC, and also holds an MBA degree from Columbia University in New York City. He is a native of Darlington.(Darlington Raceway PR)(8-4-2004)

  • Hamilton added to 'Night Riders' at Darlington: Darlington Raceway's August 24 "Night Riders" event recently got a little brighter with the addition of one of the Truck Series' biggest stars. Track officials announced today that Bobby Hamilton has been added to the lineup. Hamilton has won two of the three Truck Series races run at Darlington, including the inaugural race in May of 2001. "Night Riders" offers fans an opportunity to get their first look at the track "Too Tough To Tame" under its newly-installed facility lighting system. The event is free and the public is invited. Gates will open at 6 p.m., and activity is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. with a Gatorade Victory Lane broadcast of MRN's NASCAR Live program, hosted by Eli Gold. Following a ceremonial coin toss to officially open the festivities, the first car will hit the track at approximately 8:20 p.m. Serving fans their first taste of primetime action, Darlington Raceway-style, will be David Pearson, three-time Cup Series champion and Darlington's all-time winner with 10 Cup victories; Cale Yarborough, the only driver to win three consecutive Cup Series championships, who is currently tied for all-time wins in the Mountain Dew Southern 500 (5 wins); and Jeff Gordon, four-time Cup Series champion and the most successful active driver at Darlington, tied with Cale Yarborough for all-time Mountain Dew Southern 500 wins and third on Darlington's all-time win (6 career wins) list behind Pearson (10) and Dale Earnhardt (9). The exhibition laps will be followed by question-and-answer sessions with Pearson, Yarborough, Hamilton and Gordon. The final running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500 will see its closing laps and checkered flag under the lights on Sunday, November 14, the next-to-last race of the 2004 NEXTEL Cup Series season and a pivotal event in the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup. For more information on tickets for Darlington Raceway inaugural weekend under the lights, contact the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE (7223), or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(PR)(7-31-2004)

  • New Darlington Tix Structure for 2005: Fans attending the Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 on Saturday evening, May 7, 2005 at Darlington Raceway will discover that something other than the race date is new. The first-ever NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race to be run completely under the lights at the track "Too Tough To Tame" will feature a new ticket pricing structure, as well. All seats in the Tyler and Pearson Towers, the track's premier grandstands, will be $95 each, a savings of $15 per ticket over previous years. Seats in the Wallace Grandstand, located on the track's start/finish line, will be priced at $85 each. Brasington Grandstand seats, in action-packed Turn 2, will be $70 (a savings of $10), and spots in the adjacent Colvin Grandstand are available at $45 and $70, depending on seat location. Ticket holders for the 2004 Mountain Dew Southern 500, coming up November 14 at Darlington Raceway, and those who attended the 2004 Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 in March 2004 will be offered the first chances to renew their seats for a full weekend of primetime racing in May 2005. When the renewal process is completed, tickets will go on sale to the general public. New customers may submit seat requests now by calling the toll-free Raceway ticket hotline at 866.459.RACE (7223).(Darlington Raceway Site)(7-29-2004)

  • Interesting website: darlingtonfanz.org....Fanz to Support the Darlington Racing Tradition (FSDRT) have formed a non profit organization to link all fans together. They are accepting donations to show support to keep the one race at Darlington Speedway, at the same time you will be helping various charities. All proceeds, less expenses will be donated to the 501c3 Charity of Choice of the driver who wins each year in Darlington as long as there is Cup Racing in Darlington. More at darlingtonfanz.org.(7-26-2004)

  • Darlington tests the lights: The original home of NASCAR rivalry gave the very sun itself a little friendly competition Friday when Darlington Raceway threw the switch to test its new Mirtran interior lights. The first official night race at the track "Too Tough To Tame" will be the Darlington 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race on Friday evening, November 12. The 55th Mountain Dew Southern 500 on Sunday, November 14 will end under the lights. For more information, call toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE (7223), or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(6-25-2004)

  • Guided tours of the track "Too Tough To Tame" start June 7: Beginning Monday, June 7, Darlington Raceway will offer daily track tours. The tours, which will run every hour beginning at 10 a.m., will begin at the Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum. Visitors will learn entertaining historical facts about NASCAR's original superspeedway * the origin of the "Darlington Stripe" and the reason for the track's unique egg shape, for example. The tour will also include stops in the NEXTEL Cup garage area, the start/finish line, and finally, the most coveted parking spot at Darlington Raceway * Gatorade Victory Lane. Cost for the Darlington Raceway track tour is $5; children ages 12 and under are admitted free. Tickets are available in the Darlington Raceway Gift Shop, located on Highway 151 adjacent to the Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame.
    On August 24, Darlington Raceway will give fans their first look at "Darlington After Dark" with the Night Riders, presented by BI-LO. This free event will be highlighted by exhibition laps under the lights from Darlington champions both present and past. David Pearson, Cale Yarborough and Jeff Gordon will be behind the wheels of the first cars ever driven under Darlington's brand-new facility lighting system. Sparks will fly, guaranteed.
    In November, Darlington Raceway will host the 55th running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500. The weekend includes the Darlington 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race, the track's inaugural event under the lights, on Friday evening, November 12. Published start time for the race is 8 p.m. On Saturday afternoon, November 13, the stars of the NASCAR Busch Series will test their mettle on racing's toughest track in the BI-LO 200. Brian Vickers won this event in 2003.
    Sunday, November 14 will feature the final running of NASCAR's most historic race and the penultimate event in the Chase for the NEXTEL Cup, the Mountain Dew Southern 500. Terry Labonte is the defending champion of this premier event. For tickets or more information, contact the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE (7223), or visit www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(6-7-2004)

  • Chris Browning named president of Darlington Raceway: Former North Carolina Speedway Vice President and General Manager Chris Browning has been named president of Darlington Raceway, International Speedway Corporation officials announced today. Andrew Gurtis, who has served as Raceway president for the past three years, has been named senior director, operational planning and integration for ISC. In his new position, he will act as lead assistant to Chief Operating Officer John Saunders on matters related to ongoing business unit operations and field integration. Browning, who has been executive vice president and general manager for North Carolina Speedway in Rockingham, NC since 2002, said he is excited about the move. "I look forward to helping continue the history and tradition that has earned Darlington Raceway its special position in the sport of stock car racing," he said. Browning began his tenure at North Carolina Speedway in 1992 as director of public relations. He is a graduate of Pfeiffer College with a degree in business administration.(Darlington Raceway PR)(5-19-2004)

  • Darlington Personnel Changes: International Speedway Corporation (ISC) announced several key strategic moves including naming Andrew Gurtis, who most recently served as President of Darlington Raceway, Senior Director, Operational Planning and Integration for ISC and former North Carolina Speedway President Chris Browning President of Darlington Raceway. ISC President Lesa Kennedy made the announcements today. Prior to his 3-year stint at Darlington, Gurtis served as Vice President of Administration at Daytona International Speedway for 4 years. In his new position, Gurtis will act as lead assistant to Chief Operating Officer John Saunders on matters related to ongoing business unit operations and field integration. Browning has been Executive Vice President and General Manager for North Carolina Speedway since 2002. As EVP and GM, he was responsible for all marketing, sales, public relations, operations and governmental relations. As President, he will continue those duties at Darlington. ISC is a leading promoter of motorsports activities in the United States, currently promoting more than 100 events annually.(Darlington Raceway PR)(5-19-2004)

  • In Case Ya Missed It - No more Southern 500 after 2004: Buried among all the announcements of schedule realignment and tracks being purchased this weekend was that the Southern 500 will not exist after this season. Darlington's lone Cup race will move next season to May7 and be held at night. The race will be known as the Carolina Dodge Dealers 500. "Moving this weekend to Saturday night of Mother's Day weekend, the Southern [500] name didn't necessarily feel right," said track president Andrew Gurtis. The track is billing the Nov.14 Southern 500 as the 55th and final running of the historic race. The Southern 500 was NASCAR's first 500-mile race in 1950.(Roanoke Times)(5-16-2004)

  • Darlington AND Rockingham to lose races? Alternating ONE racedate? Texas and Vegas get the dates? UPDATE 2 Darlington expects to get two dates in 2005:
    Settlement negotiations in a lawsuit over a second Nextel Cup date for Texas Motor Speedway have potentially major ramifications for two tracks in the Carolinas, The Observer has learned. A source close to talks in a suit against NASCAR by two Speedway Motorsports Inc. [SMI] shareholders said Monday a settlement could result in International Speedway Corp. selling both North Carolina Speedway in Rockingham and Darlington Raceway to SMI. If such a deal were made, two of three remaining Cup dates from Rockingham and Darlington would move – one to Texas Motor Speedway and the other to Las Vegas Motor Speedway, giving those SMI-owned tracks two dates each per season. The other date would alternate between Rockingham and Darlington, with the Nextel Cup, Busch and Truck series racing at Rockingham one year then at Darlington the next [so much for lights and SAFER]. "I am aware of the (settlement) talks," SMI chairman Bruton Smith said Monday. "I think that they have been going on for about two months, and they're further down the road than they ever have been. But there will have to be a written agreement among all of the attorneys before there's any done deal." Smith said that in his mind any settlement of the suit would have to include a second Cup date for Texas. "That's certainly the key to it, that's why it was filed," he said.(more at ThatsRacin.com), see past news about this on my lawsuit page.(3-23-2004)
    UPDATE: After attracting the largest crowd in the 45-year history of Darlington Raceway's spring Nextel Cup event, track officials are feeling good about their chances of keeping two races for 2005. How good? "I feel confident we'll host two races next year. Frankly, I can't see it any other way," raceway president Andrew Gurtis said Tuesday. "As the promoter at Darlington Raceway, look at the last two races we've had here. We've had a sellout for the Mountain Dew Southern 500, and a record crowd for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400. We have two strong sponsors on our Cup races, and great racing. Things are just stacking up." But sources have indicated to The Post and Courier that the millions of dollars ISC has spent to add the Steel and Foam Energy Reduction (SAFER) barrier and a lighting system at Darlington guarantee that the Pee Dee track will have at least one annual event on the Nextel Cup schedule.(Chareslton Post and Courier)
    BUT Could a settlement be imminent in the battle to bring a second Nextel Cup race to Texas Motor Speedway? According to several media outlets, yes. But spokesmen for the opposing camps said they are simply following court orders in a mediation process. According to The Associated Press, Samuel Cherry, the attorney for a TMS shareholder who sued NASCAR over its refusal to award a second event, said Tuesday that progress is being made in settlement talks. Cherry said the plaintiffs and NASCAR have agreed not to discuss specifics of the 2-year-old suit. Spokespersons from both racing entities contend that no settlement is about to materialize. "(The suit) is based on the false presumption that NASCAR promised Texas Motor Speedway a second date, which NASCAR did not," NASCAR vice president of communications Jim Hunter said. "No settlement has been reached, to my knowledge." Lauri Wilks, Hunter's counterpart at SMI didn't know anything more. "Not as far as I know," Wilks said. "I don't have an official word of anything." Apparently, there is no agreement -- at least not in written form -- on the table. "Obviously, as everyone knows, it's in the best interest of the sport to put this thing behind us," Hunter said. "We're not at liberty to discuss any of the particulars. There is no timeline. In the meantime, we've got to get on with the business of running the races."(in part from the Daytona Beach News Journal/AP)(3-24-2004)

  • Darlington's Race Dates Not Guaranteed: NASCAR vice president Jim Hunter says Darlington Raceway's two-race future is not guaranteed, despite stronger attendance, and the additions of lights and SAFER barriers the past year. "I don't think you can rule out any possibility for 2005 or beyond," Hunter said Sunday. NASCAR's oldest superspeedway - its first race came in 1950 - has been rumored on the way out for several years. Ex-NASCAR CEO Bill France Jr. said in January 2003 that Darlington was among tracks where unless attendance improved, they could lose one of its two Nextel Cup events.(FoxSports/AP)(3-22-2004)

  • Gordon, Pearson, Yarborough to test the Darlington lights - Aug 24th: Darlington Raceway's new lighting system won't be used for a race until November. But it will be christened this summer in an exhibition highlighted by Jeff Gordon, who has won six races at the 54-year-old track. Raceway president Andrew Gurtis announced Friday night that Gordon, all-time Darlington winner David Pearson, and area native Cale Yarborough will take laps under the lights Aug. 24 in an event designed to show off the new system. The 72 exterior light poles are already up, and crews will return after Sunday's Carolina Dodge Dealers 500 to install infield fixtures and the power system. Construction is expected to be finished by late June. The Aug. 24 exhibition promises to be similar to one held at Daytona International Speedway, when the late Dale Earnhardt took laps under the lights shortly after that track's system was installed in 1998.(Charleston Post and Courier)(3-20-2004)

  • Drivers concerned about SAFER at Darlington, could test a day earlier: Drivers have expressed concern that the newly installed SAFER barriers at Darlington, a 1.366-mile, egg-shaped oval, will eliminate the existing groove. The barrier juts out 30 inches into the track. Jeff Gordon is in favor of the SAFER barriers, but he says moving the walls before installing the barriers would have been a better option. "But I'd rather have it than not have it, so we'll just deal with it," Gordon says. "We do brush the wall there, which I don't think is a real issue. I wouldn't mind it being a little bit softer when I rub up against it." The narrower groove will make racing tighter and passing more difficult. Because the racing conditions are expected to change so dramatically, NASCAR president Mike Helton says the organization is considering allowing teams to come in a day early to test.(FoxSports/Sporting News)(3-8-2004)

  • No Testing at Darlington: Teams won't be able to test at Darlington because the track is installing SAFER barriers in time for the spring race weekend, March 19-21. Indianapolis was the first track to install the barriers. Daytona and Talladega plan to install them before their next races.(Yahoo Sports/Sporting News), gonna be a lot of Darlington 'stripes' in March.(3-1-2004)

  • Darlington to install SAFER: Darlington Raceway officials announced today that installation of SAFER barriers at the historic track is under way. A recent announcement by NASCAR stated that all facilities hosting NEXTEL Cup Series events would be equipped with the Steel and Foam Energy Reduction system by January 2005. "Our goal is to have the SAFER barrier up at every track where it's recommended by the experts by 2005,'' said Gary Nelson, NASCAR's managing director of research and development. Darlington joins Richmond, Phoenix, Homestead-Miami, New Hampshire and Indianapolis on the list of tracks with the SAFER system. Talladega Superspeedway and Daytona International Speedway have announced plans to have the barriers in place in time for their upcoming events in April and July. The SAFER barriers' installation at Darlington will be completed in time for the spring event, the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 weekend, coming up March 19-21. Dean Sicking headed the University of Nebraska team that developed the SAFER barrier, which absorbs some of the energy in a crash, lessening the impact for a driver. The barrier is made up of steel tubes and pads of hard foam and is affixed to the concrete wall. In 2003, Dr. Sicking and the University of Nebraska were honored as the recipients of NASCAR's Award of Excellence for their work. "Safety is of paramount importance in our sport, and we are pleased to be installing the SAFER barrier at Darlington Raceway," said Andrew Gurtis, president of Darlington Raceway.(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-24-2004)

  • Latest Darlington rumor: When the lights go up, the Labor Day date comes back and everyone wins. California can have Darlington's new November date -- making the big L.A. market part of the 10-race title chase -- and the Southern 500 returns to its traditional weekend. Why would they be putting up lights at Darlington for either of its two cool-weather events? It's such a perfect solution, you kinda figure it's not true.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(2-21-2004)

  • SAFER hard to install at Darlington: Darlington Raceway was built in 1949 and is considered the most peculiar track on the NASCAR circuit, an oval with one end wider than the other, a slight kink in one of the corners, and a racing groove that sometimes runs just inches from the wall. Those idiosyncrasies have endeared themselves to fans and drivers who love great racing. But they present headaches for engineers at the University of Nebraska's Midwest Roadside Safety Facility, developers of the crash-softening SAFER wall barriers NASCAR is trying to add to every track. The Steel and Foam Energy-Reduction barrier, a combination of steel tubes and polystyrene foam designed to absorb impact energy during an accident, is used at six facilities that host Nextel Cup events. Daytona International Speedway, which hosts Sunday's Daytona 500, plans to have the barrier in place before its July event. NASCAR officials want the "soft wall" system up at every track where it's practical by January of 2005. Dr. Dean Sicking, director of the Midwest Roadside Safety Facility, will admit that Darlington is problematic. But he doesn't think the implementation of the SAFER barrier at the 1.3-mile Pee Dee facility is impossible. "We're in the process of looking at all of the high-speed ovals, and that would include Darlington," Sicking said Monday from his office in Lincoln, Neb. "Darlington is quirky. It has some problems. It may not be first up. But I think it's certainly on the radar screen." Asked if Darlington had been ruled out for SAFER use, Sicking said, "Absolutely not." While Sicking wouldn't go into specific detail about the problems Darlington presents, he said the 54-year-old facility has some hurdles in common with other NASCAR venues. At some tracks, the concrete walls to be covered by the SAFER barrier are too short. At others, the part of the wall to be covered by the SAFER barrier, or the transition areas where the barrier begins and ends, may interfere with the racing line. The latter problem is particularly evident at Darlington, where cars run right up against the wall. There's also a slight kink in the wall exiting Turn 2, which cars often make contact with while coming out of the corner, lasting evidence of Brasington's primitive method of engineering. "At some tracks -- and I think Darlington would fall into this category -- the barrier is going to severely affect the racing lines, and we've got to be very careful about where we put it, and how the transitions work," Sicking said. "Because the closer you are to the racing line, the more important the transitions are. Some of the walls, the radius changes a lot, so there's not a constant radius. These are just all complications that have to be overcome, but it just makes the installation more complicated and a little more time-consuming."
    While NASCAR wants its tracks to use the system, the implementation is being left up to the individual track owners. Darlington is owned by International Speedway Corp., a track conglomerate run by the same France family that runs NASCAR. Of the six tracks that currently employ the SAFER barrier, four -- Richmond, Phoenix, Talladega and Homestead-Miami -- are owned by ISC.(Charleston Post and Courier)(2-10-2004)

  • Dodge Six-Pack is Back: The Dodge Six-Pack, one of the most popular ticket packages ever created for race fans, returns to Darlington Raceway in 2004 by popular demand. The promotion will officially kick off during the Saturday, February 7 MRN broadcast of the Budweiser Shootout, and will be available until the checkered flag falls at the Daytona 500 on Sunday, February 15, or while they last. The Dodge Six-Pack is a unique opportunity designed to offer fans an affordably-priced opportunity to attend Darlington Raceway's spring fling event, the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 on Sunday, March 21. The package includes six reserved grandstand seats for the race. Total cost for the Six-Pack is $150. The Dodge Six-Pack will get an added push from John Boy and Billy. The popular syndicated radio talk show personalities are among NASCAR's biggest supporters. Darlington Raceway president Andrew Gurtis will talk about the track "Too Tough To Tame" during a call-in interview with John Boy and Billy on February 12, and the track will sponsor on-air promotions all week long. The Dodge Six-Pack will be available February 7 through February 15 only, or while they last. Quantities are extremely limited. The package, which costs $150, includes six seats for the home of the closest finish in NASCAR history, the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, on Sunday, March 21 at Darlington Raceway.
    The Dodge Six-Pack is only available by calling the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE (7223). This offer is not available online. For more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call 843.395.8499, or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(DR PR)(2-6-2004)

  • Newman on Darlington pole ticket: Ryan Newman, driver of the #12 ALLTEL Dodge for Penske Racing is featured on the collectible pole day ticket for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 weekend, coming up March 19-21 at Darlington Raceway. Newman led all drivers by earning 11 pole positions during the 2003 racing season. In March of 2003, Newman earned the second-place starting position at Darlington behind polesitter Elliott Sadler, then returned in August to win the top starting spot for the final Labor Day running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500, his first Darlington pole position in NASCAR's premier Series. For more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, including Bud Pole qualifying for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup and Busch Series on Friday, March 19; the Diamond Hill Plywood 200 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, March 20; and the 48th running of the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 on Sunday, March 21, contact the Raceway ticket hotline at 843.395.8499, or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-3-2004)

  • Southern 500 to End Under the Lights:
    Darlington Raceway Track president Andrew Gurtis lobbied NASCAR, stock-car racing’s sanctioning body, and NBC, which will televise the Southern 500 race, for a chance to show off the lights at stock-car racing’s oldest super-speedway. The 1:30 p.m. starting time on Nov. 14 assures the track will use its newly installed light system. The 500-mile race around Darlington’s 1.366-mile layout almost always requires more than four hours to complete. The 2003 event took 4 hours, 9 minutes. Sunset on Nov. 14 is 5:16 p.m. High temperatures on Nov. 14 the past two years have been in the 60s. Fixtures outside the track for Darlington’s lighting system have been installed. Inside fixtures and the power grid will be completed this summer. The first night race is scheduled to be the in the Craftsman Truck Series on Nov. 12, which kicks off a race weekend that includes a Busch Series race on Nov. 13 and the Southern 500. Darlington’s first race weekend of 2004 features the Busch Series on March 20 and the Nextel Cup’s Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 a day later.(The State)(1-25-2004)

  • Darlington Tix on sale: Tickets for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, March 21, 2004 at Darlington Raceway, will go on sale to the general public on Friday, December 5 - just in time for the holidays. Darlington Raceway's spring event, the first of the legendary track's two annual NASCAR Nextel Cup Series weekends, is widely considered to the be the more "rough and tumble" of the two races. Friday, March 19, 2004 will feature Bud Pole Qualifying for both the NASCAR Busch and Nextel Cup Series, followed by the Diamond Hill Plywood 200 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, March 20. On Sunday, March 21, the stars of NASCAR's Nextel Cup Series will tackle the track "Too Tough To Tame" for the 102nd time in the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400. For tickets or more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call the Raceway ticket hotline at 843.395.8499, or log onto the Darlington Raceway site)(12-5-2003)

  • Darlington loses cover, gaining lights: The most tangible sign of lights coming to Darlington Raceway is the removal of the roof of the Brasington Grandstand, the second-oldest covered grandstand in Winston Cup racing behind one at Indianapolis. The roof was removed last week, and a crane has been brought in to take down the roof support. Musco Lighting, the Iowa company doing the work, had to remove the roof to ensure even lighting of the track. "The roof is so close to the racetrack that Musco cannot get light on the track from the outside," said track superintendent Sammie Yarborough, cousin to three-time Winston Cup champion Cale. "You've got to have light balanced from both sides. They tried everything they could figure and couldn't do it, so we didn't have any choice." The track will eventually be ringed by 74 light poles, including 47 exterior poles ranging from 90 to 120 feet high, and 27 more that will rise 30 to 40 feet above the grandstands. Running along the inside of the track will be 212 reflectors that will direct light onto the racing surface. It's the same setup Musco has used to light a number of other Winston Cup venues, including those in Daytona Beach and Charlotte. On Oct. 27, 22 tractor-trailers will deliver the light poles, which will assembled on the ground. Cranes will then lift them into the foundations, where the tapered poles will lock into place. Although the sponsorship agreements announced Tuesday extend into 2006 and 2008, there's no guarantee Darlington will have a spring race beyond next season. Gurtis said the realignment issue did come up during negotiations.(Charleston Post and Courier)(10-15-2003)

  • Darlington Sponsors Re-up: On Tuesday, Raceway and Carolina Dodge Dealers Association officials announced that the spring 2004 Nextel (Winston) Cup Series race will continue as the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400. The new contract runs for five years, through March 2008. The March 2004 race weekend carries a double sponsorship package. Track officials also announced today that Darlington-based company Diamond Hill Plywood will assume title sponsorship of the NASCAR Busch Series race. The Diamond Hill Plywood Co. 200 will be run on Saturday, March 20. The contract runs three years, through March 2006. Diamond Hill Plywood has sponsored Darlington's spring Busch Series event before, from 1997 to 1999. This time around, the company also plans to sponsor a golf tournament in conjunction with the race weekend. That event will be called the Diamond Hill Plywood Golf Classic. Darlington's spring race weekend kicks off on Friday, March 19, 2004 with Bud Pole qualifying for the NASCAR Nextel Cup and Busch Series. Saturday, March 20 will feature the Diamond Hill Plywood Co. 200 NASCAR Busch Series race, and Sunday, March 21 will feature the 48th running of the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 NASCAR Nextel Cup Series race. For tickets or more information on these or other upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, contact the ticket hotline at 843.395.8499, or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(10-15-2003)

  • Truck Race at Darlington to race under the lights: Sparks will literally fly at the track "Too Tough To Tame" when the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series officially christens Darlington Raceway's brand-new facility lighting system by battling it out under the lights on Friday evening, November 12, 2004. Start time for the race, which will be televised on the Speed Channel, is 7 p.m. EST. Broadcast schedules are tentative and subject to change. Darlington will host two race weekends next year, in March and November. The Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 weekend, March 19-21, will include Bud pole qualifying on Friday, March 19; the darlingtonraceway.com 200 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, March 20; and the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 NASCAR Nextel Cup Series race on Sunday, March 21. In addition to the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race on Friday, November 12, Darlington's fall race weekend also includes the South Carolina 200 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, November 13; and the 55th running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500 on Sunday, November 14. Start times for those events have not been announced.For more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, contact the Raceway ticket hotline at 843.395.8499, or visit www.darlingtonraceway.com. (Darlington Raceway)(9-25-2003)

  • Sold Out: Sunday's race was the first sellout of a Southern 500 race since 1997. It also was the first time the track had over 60,000 people in attendance since it expanded in 1998.(Morning News)(9-1-2003)

  • Darlington Problems? the Winston Salem Journal reports .....This track's yearly share of the annual $400 million in television money for the 36-race series is about $14 million. You don't have to clean your glasses to see that that none of that has been spent to upgrade Darlington. The 'historic' third-turn tunnel is ever closer to collapse. The 'covered' garage is little more than tobacco-barn roofing on rusting steel stakes. The road system surrounding the track is still chaotic and haphazard. Ticket sales have never been astounding, or even adequate, even though this is the last great beach weekend of the year, and one of the world's great beaches, with thousands of vacationers, is only 80 miles away, practically untapped. Once a major event, the France family let the Southern 500 deteriorate into just another race in a small, sandy town in the middle of nowhere. No, all of that just draws knowing chuckles from these racers. Augusta National this ain't, and they know it. So moving the Southern 500 to a cooler date is fine. In fact, a good question is why track promoters didn't move this race to the nighttime, like Bristol, long ago.(Winston Salem Journal)(8-31-2003)

  • Could Be Record Crowd at Darlington: Darlington Raceway Track president Andrew Gurtis on Thursday stopped just short of saying the Southern 500 will be sold out for the first time since before the track was expanded to about 60,000 seats in 1998. "I can say without question we'll have the largest attendance in Darlington Raceway history by a few thousand," Gurtis said. Gurtis would not say how many tickets had been sold for this weekend's race, and he wouldn't put a hard number on past attendance. In the past, Darlington crowds have reached an estimated 75,000, including infield tickets and grandstand seats.(The State)(8-29-2003)

  • Parade: The following National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA) Hall of Fame members are scheduled to participate in the Mountain Dew Southern 500 parade, to be held in downtown Darlington [SC] on Saturday morning, August 30: Sam Ard; Jerry Cook; Ned Jarrett; Jack Ingram; Dale Inman; and all-time Darlington Raceawy champion David Pearson. The parade, a 50-year tradition in Darlington, will begin at 10:00am/et.(Darlington Raceway {PR)(8-29-2003)

  • Free Shuttle Service at Darlington: Sunday morning, August 31 at Darlington Raceway is stuffed as full as a holiday turkey with pre-race activities for the 54th running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500. You won't want to miss anything, so why worry about fighting the traffic? The Pee Dee Regional Transportation Authority (PDRTA) is offering free shuttle service to and from Darlington Raceway for the Mountain Dew Southern 500. Fans wishing to take advantage of this service have two options “ be picked up, or park and ride. Pickups will be available at various hotels in the area beginning at 8:15 a.m. on August 31. Hotels on Highway 52 which offer shuttle pickup service include Holiday Inn and Suites; Motel 6; Guesthouse Inn; Comfort Inn; Econo Lodge; Microtel; Country Inn and Suites; Ramada Inn; and Sleep Inn. The following hotels on David McLeod Blvd will also have shuttle pickup service:. Fairfield Inn; Red Roof Inn; and Affordable Suites. The park-and-ride shuttle service will also begin at 8:15 a.m. Departure point in Florence is the Florence Civic Center, located at the intersection of I-95 and I-20. Both the park-and-ride and hotel pickup shuttles are free. Return service from the track will begin immediately following the conclusion of the Mountain Dew Southern 500. For more information contact PDRTA at 843.665.2227.(Darlington Raceway PR)(8-28-2003)

  • David Spade at Darlington; and with Wally: Film and television star David Spade will visit Darlington Raceway for the 54th running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500 on Sunday, August 31. The trip is part of the promotional campaign for Spade's new film for Paramount Pictures, Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star, [www.dickieroberts.com]scheduled for release on Friday, September 5. Spade, who made his television debut as a regular cast member on the NBC favorite Saturday Night Live in 1990, was nominated for an Emmy Award in 1999 for his role as Dennis Finch, the wise-cracking, power-hungry assistant on Just Shoot Me. Nominated for a Golden Globe Award in 1999 and 2000 and an American Comedy Award in 1999, also for his work on Just Shoot Me, Spade's film career continues to grow, as well. Following a Sunday morning press conference in the James H. Hunter Media Center, Spade will participate in pre-race ceremonies for the Mountain Dew Southern 500.(Darlington Raceway PR) AND Actor David Spade doing a Darlington ride-along with NBC analyst Wally Dallenbach as part of the Discover Card Countdown to Green pre-race show’s “Wally’s World” segment.(NBC PR)(8-27-2003)

  • Southern 500 Program: A 54-year tradition ends in 2003 with the final Labor Day weekend running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway, which moves to November in 2004. The first superspeedway stock car race, this historic event quickly became the NASCAR Winston Cup Series standard. Only the top drivers can succeed on the track “Too Tough to Tame.” The 2003 Mountain Dew Southern 500 Event Program will feature this on their cover, more at the Darlington Raceway site.(8-26-2003)

  • Smashmouth Concert at Darlington: Smash Mouth will bring a carefree, fun-in-the-sun attitude to Darlington Raceway on Sunday, August 31. The band will perform a pre-race concert on the track's start/finish line at approximately 11:30a,/et, prior to the 54th running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500. Smash Mouth will return to the stage to open NBC's pre-race broadcast at 12:30pm/et with a live performance of their current hit single, "You Are My Number One," from the band's latest CD, Get the Picture?. Smash Mouth's performance is included in the price of a race ticket to the Mountain Dew Southern 500. For more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, including The Pantry Pole Day on Friday, August 29, the Winn-Dixie 200 presented by PepsiCo NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, August 30, and the final Labor Day running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500 on Sunday, August 31, contact the Raceway ticket hotline at (843) 395-8499, or visit www.darlingtonraceway.com.(8-26-2003)

  • Winn Dixie to sponsor Busch race at Darlington: Winn-Dixie and PepsiCo will jointly sponsor the August 30, 2003 NASCAR Busch Series event at Darlington Raceway. The race will be called "The Winn-Dixie 200 presented by PepsiCo." PepsiCo's major brand families include Gatorade, Pepsi-cola, Tropicana, Frito-Lay and Quaker. The company has sponsored the Mountain Dew Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway since 1992. Gatorade, sponsor of the fall 2002 NASCAR Busch Series race at Darlington, the Gatorade 200, recently expanded their long-time relationship with the track to include naming rights to the track's most coveted parking spot. Gatorade Victory Lane made its Darlington debut during the spring 2003 race weekend.(Darlington Raceway PR)(8-25-2003)

  • Special Pole Ticket for Darlington: The collectible pole day ticket for the final Labor Day running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500 features two great Darlington champions with a common bond, Cale Yarborough and Jeff Gordon. When South Carolina native Cale Yarborough won an unprecedented fifth Mountain Dew Southern 500 in 1982, many thought it was a feat that would never be duplicated. The record stood for 20 years. Then, in 2002, Jeff Gordon took the checkers to earn his fifth win in NASCAR's most historic race. The most successful active driver on the Winston Cup Series circuit and the only driver to ever win four consecutive Mountain Dew Southern 500's. Eight years ago, in March of 1995, the first collectible ticket produced for pole day at Darlington Raceway featured the track's all-time winner, David Pearson. The first collectible ticket available for the Mountain Dew Southern 500 weekend, in September of that same year, showcased Yarborough. Now in its 18th version, Yarborough is once again the focal point of the pole day collectible, along with the man whose eye is set on breaking his record, Jeff Gordon. For more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, including The Pantry Pole Day on Friday, August 29, the South Carolina 200 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, August 30, and the 54th running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500 on Sunday, August 31, call the Raceway ticket hotline at 843.395.8499, or visit www.darlingtonraceway.com.(PR)(8-25-2003)

  • Lights slowly going up at Darlington: Stakes around Darlington Raceway denote the locations of 74 light poles that will eventually encircle the track. Gurtis said officials from Musco Lighting are already on site doing preliminary work, although the heavy infrastructure work will wait until the summer of 2004.(Charleston Post and Courier)(8-24-2003)

  • Lights at Darlington UPDATE: Track officials are expected to formally announce on Thursday that Darlington Raceway will install a facility lighting system for next season. The system is expected to be in place and ready for testing by early fall 2004. No information is currently available regarding specific events to be run under the lights at Darlington. NASCAR is expected to release its 2004 event schedules later this month.(Darlington Raceway PR)(8-6-2003)
    UPDATE: Darlington Raceway is expected to be equipped for night racing by fall 2004, track officials announced today. Specific event information will be forthcoming, pending NASCAR's release of its 2004 event schedules later this month. "The addition of lights dramatically expands the flexibility of our facility," said Andrew Gurtis, president of Darlington Raceway. "Inclement weather becomes less of an issue, and television audiences as well as ticket buyers are certainly always receptive to prime time racing, regardless of the event. We fully expect the first race run under the lights at Darlington to be one of the most exciting spectacles of the 2004 season." Darlington will host two race weekends next year, in March and November. Track officials estimate the lighting system will be installed and ready for testing in early fall 2004. The announcement comes on the heels of the grand re-opening of the Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA) Hall of Fame. Both attractions were opened to the public in July following a major renovation and expansion project, including the addition of several new motorsports exhibits. "We are very excited about Darlington's ˜bright" future, and about International Speedway Corporation's continued commitment to this venerable track and its place in both the past and the future of stock car racing," Gurtis said. For more information about upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, including the final Labor Day weekend running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500, August 29-31, contact the Raceway ticket hotline at (843) 395-8499, or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)

  • Six Pack at Darlington Good Until August 3rd: The Mountain Dew Six Pack, one of the most popular ticket packages ever created for race fans, returns to Darlington Raceway by popular demand. The promotion kicked off Saturday, July 26 and will be available until the checkered flag falls at the Brickyard 400 on Sunday, August 3, or while they last. The Mountain Dew Six Pack is a unique opportunity designed to offer fans an affordably-priced ticket package for the final Labor Day weekend running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500 on Sunday, August 31 at Darlington Raceway. The package includes six reserved grandstand seats for the race. Total cost for the Six Pack is only $150, a true bargain. The Mountain Dew Six-Pack will be available July 26 through August 3 only, or while they last. Quantities are extremely limited. The package, which costs $150, includes six seats for the 53rd running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500 on Sunday, August 31 at Darlington Raceway, the track "œToo Tough To Tame." The Mountain Dew Six Pack is only available by calling the Raceway ticket hotline at (843) 395-8499. This offer is NOT available online.(Darlington Raceway)(8-2-2003)

  • Special Commemorative Ticket for final Labor Day Southern 500: No, it isn't the final autumn race weekend at Darlington, but it is the finale of one of racing's most long-standing traditions. The August 31, 2003 running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500 will mark the last time that legendary event is held on Labor Day weekend. The race will move to November in 2004. To commemorate this landmark day in the history of racing, Darlington Raceway has commissioned a special commemorative ticket for the final Labor Day weekend running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500. Designed by graphic artist John O. Holmberg, the ticket pays homage to Darlington Raceway's past, and to its present. The sepia-toned background features an action shot from the inaugural Mountain Dew Southern 500 in 1950. An array of photos at the top showcases winners through the decades, from Johnny Mantz to Buck Baker to Dale Earnhardt to Jeff Gordon, and includes the slogan, "An American racing tradition since 1950." People often save their tickets from significant sporting events," said Darlington Raceway president Andrew Gurtis. "We wanted to give fans attending the final Labor Day running of this very special race a piece of memorabilia they can take home and treasure for years. Someday, fans can show this ticket to their children and say, ˜I was there." Every 2003 Mountain Dew Southern 500 ticket purchaser will receive the commemorative ticket. For information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, including the Mountain Dew Southern 500 weekend, August 29-31, 2003, contact the Raceway ticket hotline at 843.395.8499, or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(7-25-2003)

  • Darlington Raceway wedding packages sold out: Good seats are still available for the Mountain Dew Southern 500 weekend events, coming up August 29-31 at Darlington Raceway. Fans hoping to tie the knot while visiting the track "Too Tough To Tame," however, will have to wait until the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 weekend in March 2004. Darlington Raceway's wedding packages are sold out. "Every year, dozens of fans call the office before each of our two race weekends, asking about the possibility of getting married at Darlington," said Andrew Gurtis, president of Darlington Raceway. "This year, we decided to give a try. The response has been overwhelming, to put it mildly. The available wedding packages sold out in less than a week." Darlington Raceway's wedding package includes a marriage ceremony in Gatorade Victory Lane on Sunday morning, prior to the 53rd running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500; a pair of pre-race pit passes; and embroidered Darlington Raceway caps for the bride and groom. The first couple to be married at Darlington on August 31 will be Craig Norrell and Lesa Russell, from Troup, Texas. "Your wedding day is one of the most significant and memorable occasions of your life," Gurtis said. "This track obviously holds a special place in many hearts, and we are honored that so many of our guests want to exchange their vows at Darlington Raceway. We look forward to making this package even bigger and better in 2004." For more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, including the final Labor Day weekend running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500, August 29-31, contact the Raceway ticket hotline at (843) 395-8499.(Darlington Raceway PR)(7-21-2003)

  • True Music Competition 2003: Budweiser, Cumulus Broadcasting to sponsor statewide music competition at Darlington Raceway. You’ve started a band, practiced long and hard, and now your dream is to have the chance to play for thousands of enthusiastic fans during a race weekend at Darlington. A unique new promotion could make that possible. More info at the Darlington Raceway site: True Music Competition 2003 and Complete Rules.(7-21-2003)

  • Southern 500 Grand Marshal: On Sunday, August 31, Admiral Vern Clark, the Chief of Naval Operations for the United States Navy, will serve as Grand Marshal and will give the command to start engines for the final Labor Day weekend running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. Born in Sioux City, Iowa, and raised in the midwestern states of Nebraska, Missouri and Illinois, Admiral Clark graduated from Evangel College and earned a Master's Degree of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Arkansas. He attended Officer Candidate School and received his commission in August 1968. Admiral Clark has served as the Deputy and Chief of Staff, United States Atlantic Fleet; the Director of Operations (J3) and subsequently Director, of the Joint Staff. He became the 27th Chief of Naval Operations on July 21, 2000. Admiral Clark's personal decorations include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal (three awards), the Distinguished Service Medal (two awards), the Legion of Merit (three awards), the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal (four awards), the Navy Commendation Medal, and various service and campaign awards. For more information on the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500 weekend, August 29-31 at Darlington Raceway, contact the Raceway ticket hotline at 843.395.8499. (Darlington Raceway PR)(7-18-2003)

  • Darlington Raceway offers new wedding package: On Sunday morning, August 31, prior to the 53rd running of the legendary Mountain Dew Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway, Gatorade Victory Lane will be available for couples wishing to tie the knot at the track. Darlington Raceway's wedding package includes a marriage ceremony in Gatorade Victory Lane, a pair of embroidered Darlington caps, and two pre-race pit passes for the Mountain Dew Southern 500. Cost for the wedding package, which is available on Sunday morning, August 31 only, is $100. Participants must be 18 years of age or older, and provide photo identification and a valid South Carolina marriage license. South Carolina marriage licenses may be obtained from any Probate Court office in the state. If you are traveling to Darlington from out-of-state and need information on how you can obtain a South Carolina marriage license for your ceremony, call the Darlington County Probate Court office at (843) 398-4310. For more information or to schedule your August 31 wedding at Darlington Raceway, contact Deena Shelley in the Raceway ticket office at (843) 395-8499. Wedding packages must be scheduled in advance; only a limited number are available.(Darlington Raceway PR)(7-16-2003)

  • Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and NMPA Hall of Fame ribbon-cutting scheduled for July 9th: On Wednesday, July 9, Darlington Raceway will host an official grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA) Hall of Fame, located adjacent to the track on Hwy. 151 in Darlington, SC. The event will begin at 12:00noon/et. The Museum and Hall of Fame were closed for the month of June while undergoing significant expansion and renovation. The result can truly be described as a virtual transformation. While the popular exhibits formerly featured in the Museum remain “ including the Plymouth Johnny Mantz drove to victory in the inaugural Mountain Dew Southern 500 in 1950 and Bill Elliott's "Million Dollar Bird“ they have made room for some new neighbors. Mural-sized artwork on the walls guides visitors through the amazing story of racing's past, and carries them forward into the present. The NMPA Hall of Fame Theatre features state-of-the-art audio and video equipment, and a new film produced by the Motor Racing Network (MRN) and narrated by the familiar voice of award-winning broadcaster Eli Gold. New pylons and memorabilia have been added to the Hall of Fame, featuring recent inductees such as Dale Earnhardt, A.J. Foyt and Bill France, Jr. The Wednesday, July 9 ribbon-cutting is open to the public. Museum and Hall of Fame admission will be offered free of charge on that day, between the hours of 12:00noon and 2:00pm/et. For more information on the grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and NMPA Hall of Fame on Wednesday, July 9, call (843) 395-8892.(Darlington Raceway PR)(7-3-2003)

  • Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and NMPA Hall of Fame expected to re-open in July: The Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and the National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA) Hall of Fame, located at Darlington Raceway, are currently undergoing a major expansion and renovation project. Both attractions are expected to re-open in early July. The museum, originally named after Joe Weatherly, was officially dedicated on May 2, 1965. The main gallery in the new Museum will be called the Joe Weatherly Gallery, in honor and memory of the popular driver. Notable racecars in the museum collection include the 1950 Plymouth driven to victory by Johnny Mantz in the inaugural Mountain Dew Southern 500; Richard Petty's 1967 Plymouth that won more races in a single season than any car in NASCAR history, including the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 at Darlington; and the Ford Thunderbird that Bill Elliott drove to victory “ picking up the first-ever million-dollar Winston Million bonus in the process “ in the 1985 Mountain Dew Southern 500. The NMPA Hall of Fame inducted its first four members in 1965. Each year, members of the press association vote for new Hall of Fame inductees. The induction ceremony is part of Darlington Raceway's Mountain Dew Southern 500 weekend activities each year. Currently, the Hall of Fame totals 68 members. "Expanding the NMPA Hall of Fame is a major step for us," said former NMPA president David Poole. "We believe the Hall of Fame is very important to the sport, and we want it to be something our inductees, members and race fans are proud of and look forward to visiting." The new Museum and Hall of Fame facilities will nearly double their former size, and will offer visitors several new and updated exhibits. The Hall of Fame theater has also been enlarged and outfitted with a new video, produced by MRN and narrated by award-winning broadcaster Eli Gold, featuring the great personalities of stock car racing, both past and present. The track tentatively plans to host a charity fundraiser in the new facility on Tuesday, July 8, and a community ribbon-cutting and grand opening ceremony on Wednesday, July 9, with free admission during designated hours. For more information on the Museum, NMPA Hall of Fame or other events at Darlington Raceway, including the Mountain Dew Southern 500 weekend August 29-31, call (843) 395-8499.(Darlington Raceway PR)(6-18-2003)

  • Tropics Darlington Style: On Sunday, August 31, race fans can spend some time in the tropics, Darlington Raceway style. The Darlington Stripe Zone will take fans on a trip to the islands on Sunday, August 31, prior to the 54th running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500, with a "Caribbean Carolina" themed hospitality area for fans. Bobby Labonte, the 2000 NASCAR Winston Cup Series champion and winner of the Mountain Dew Southern 500 that same year, will pay a visit to the Stripe Zone for a question-and-answer session. Labonte's appearance will take place at approximately 9:30am/et. Located in the Wachovia Hospitality Village outside the track's Turn 3, the Darlington Stripe Zone gives fans an opportunity to eat, relax and interact with NASCAR personalities on race morning.
    Darlington Stripe Zone admission includes: catered lunch in a specially designated chalet tent located in the Hospitality Village (this year's menu will feature "Cheeseburgers in Paradise"); a Darlington Raceway commemorative event souvenir; live entertainment from Myrtle Beach-based band Cousin Homer; all beverages; a 2003 Mountain Dew Southern 500 souvenir program; and a question-and-answer session featuring Bobby Labonte, driver of the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Chevrolet for Joe Gibbs Racing.
    Fans in attendance can expect a few fun surprises this year. Labonte is a well-known fan of the music of Jimmy Buffett, so look for Parrothead trivia and limbo contests in addition to other unique Darlington Stripe Zone activities, all accompanied by the sounds of your favorite island tunes.
    Plus: Darlington Stripe Zone admission also includes pre-race pit passes for the Mountain Dew Southern 500, valid until noon on August 31 only. Schedules start time for the race is 1 p.m. Please note that if you choose to wear your board shorts and flip-flops to the Stripe Zone, you'll need to bring along some backup apparel. Open-toed shoes, shorts and tank tops are not allowed in the pit area. For more information on the Darlington Stripe Zone, the Mountain Dew Southern 500 weekend, coming up August 29-31, 2003, or other events at Darlington Raceway, call (843) 395-8499.
    (Scheduled driver appearances are subject to change)(Darlington Raceway PR)(6-18-2003)

  • It's OFFICIAL - California gets 2nd race, on Labor day, Darlington moves to 2nd Rockingham slot, which loses a race: Beginning in 2004, California Speedway will get a second NASCAR Winston Cup date -- Sunday night during Labor Day weekend. This first official move of the Winston Cup Series' "realignment 2004" was announced Friday. The inaugural Pop Secret 500 is scheduled to begin at 8:00pm/et on Sunday, Sept. 5th, and will be telecast live on NBC. California Speedway is touting it as the first Sunday night prime time Winston Cup event. NASCAR president Mike Helton deflected all questions about additional future changes to the schedule. In 2004, North Carolina Speedway, a 60,113-seat oval in Rockingham, NC will lose its second date on the schedule, in the fall. This season Rockingham's spring race was held Feb. 23, a date that has been weather-plagued through the years. The Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway, a 60,000-seat oval, will replace Rockingham's fall date. The Southern 500 has been held on Labor Day weekend for 53 years at Darlington, the 1.336-mile South Carolina oval. Darlington maintains its spring event, held annually in March since 1957.(NASCAR.com)(6-13-2003)

  • 2004 Schedule to be announced this coming weekend? UPDATE NO: NASCAR is expected to unveil the 2004 Winston Cup schedule this weekend, and the only major change is that California will get a second race, replacing the fall date at Rockingham. Insiders say Darlington will lose a race in 2005 to an International Speedway Corporation track. Phoenix would be the best choice, but the race probably will go to Kansas or Chicago, the circuit's newest cookie-cutter tracks. Not only is weather seldom a factor at Phoneix, the track has considerably more character than Kansas or Chicago and produces better racing.(Sporting News), it was announced last Friday on Totally NASCAR that on June 13th, the California to Labor Day and Darlington getting the 2nd Rockingham date in Nov would be announced at Michigan.(6-9-2003)
    UPDATE: International Speedway Corp.[ISC] has scheduled a news conference for 1:00pm/et on Friday, June 13th at Michigan International Speedway where officials are expected to announce ISC will move one of the Winston Cup race dates at its track in Rockingham, NC, to California Speedway in 2004. In addition, the second race at California Speedway, will be held during Labor Day weekend, traditionally the home of the Southern 500 at Darlington, SC, another ISC track. Since joining the series in 1997, California has usually hosted its Winston Cup race in April. That race will remain, sources said. Darlington's Southern 500 will take a date later in the season, but will continue to host two Winston Cup races in 2004, sources said. Reports surfaced last weekend at Pocono that NASCAR could announce the entire 2004 schedule this weekend, but NASCAR officials on Tuesday said the schedule was not completed.(ThatsRacin.com)(6-10-2003)

  • California to Labor Day in 2004: there will be an official announcement at Michigan International Speedway on June 13th that California Speedway would get a 2nd Cup race to run on Labor Day weekend in 2004, with Darlington Raceway and the Southern 500 being moved to the Rockingham spot in late 2004. Rockingham [North Carolina Speedway] will be cut down to one race in 2004, which currently is run in the last weekend in February.(Fox Sports Net's Totally NASCAR)(5-30-2003)

  • more on California to Labor Day...Darlington to Nov (brrrr): NASCAR keeps pounding out its 2004 Winston Cup tour schedule, and NASCAR sources said yesterday that Daytona officials are confirming the second California 500 will be Labor Day weekend next season.(Winston Salem Journal)(5-18-2003)

  • Kansas takes Darlington race in 2005? In 2005, the Cup series is expected to go to Kansas Speedway a second time, replacing the Darlington spring race on the schedule. NASCAR officials are not expected to release next season's schedule until late summer, so more changes could be made. NASCAR typically makes the schedule only one year in advance.(Roanoke Times)(5-18-2003)

  • 2nd California Race? On Labor Day 2004? UPDATE 4: A second Winston Cup tour 500-mile race in California is all but a certainty for next season, according a 2004 Winston Cup tour schedule currently under consideration. According to NASCAR sources, this second California 500 could be run on Labor Day weekend. That would mean that NASCAR's annual Labor Day Southern 500, a fixture on the stock-car tour since 1950, could become history, or could be moved to the current March spot in the schedule when a 400-miler is at Darlington.(Winston Salem Journal)(4-26-2003)
    UPDATE: The two dates most mentioned are Labor Day, which will steal Darlington Raceway’s tradition, or the season-ending event, which is currently run at the Homestead Motorsports Complex. Both of these potential fall dates are rumored to be affairs under the lights.(Ford Racing)(4-26-2003)
    UPDATE 2:According to top car owners, the California Speedway will be the site of a second Winston Cup event on Labor Day weekend in 2004, although it's unclear if it would be Saturday night or Sunday. And there is the possibility that Darlington, if it keeps two Cup dates next season, might have the Southern 500 moved to the November race date currently held by North Carolina Speedway at Rockingham, just an hour up the road.(Winston Salem Journal)(4-28-2003)
    UPDATE 3 - Moving for sure?: The Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway, a mainstay on the Winston Cup schedule since 1950, will not be back in 2004, an anonymous source told ESPN.com. Instead, NASCAR is moving its annual Labor Day weekend race to the California Speedway and is considering making it a night race. It's not known whether the Southern 500 title will accompany the race to Fontana, Calif. "This could be the beginning of some fairly substantial changes in the Winston Cup schedules and there could be some big surprises down the road," said the source, who is close to the NASCAR family. An official announcement is expected in the near future.(ESPN's Robin Miller)(5-15-2003)
    UPDATE 4 - just a rumor? Darlington Raceway officials were stunned Thursday by an ESPN.com report that said the Southern 500 -- one of the biggest races on the Winston Cup schedule -- will be moved to another track beginning next season. Quoting an anonymous source, the Web site said NASCAR would be moving the Labor Day classic to California Speedway for 2004, and possibly turning the event into a night race. California holds 90,000 grandstand seats and is in the coveted Los Angeles market. The facility already hosts one Winston Cup event each season. Thursday's report came as raceway officials were still waiting to find out how their track fits into the 2004 Winston Cup schedule. "We haven't even talked to NASCAR yet about our sanctioning agreements or about what our dates (for 2004) are going to be right now," said Cathy Mock, Darlington's director of public relations. "Nobody at the track knows anything about this. It's just a rumor. In Darlington's case, "none of that has happened," Mock stressed. "Our meeting with NASCAR hasn't even been scheduled yet." Jim Hunter, who served for nearly a decade as Darlington's president and is now NASCAR's vice president for corporate communications, said he was unaware of any such decisions having been made. "Not to my knowledge," he told the Web site. "I think I would know if that was going to happen, and I don't see that happening." Although the ESPN report went on to say that Darlington would keep two dates -- taking the November race from another struggling ISC track, North Carolina Speedway in Rockingham -- moving the Southern 500 would be a massive blow to Darlington's stature in the sport.(Charleston Post and Courier)(5-16-2003)

  • Two days at Darlington for only $55: On Thursday, May 15 and Friday, May 16 ONLY, fans may purchase two tickets for The Pantry Pole Day on Friday, August 29 PLUS two tickets for the South Carolina 200 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, August 30 ” a $100 value ” .for just $55. The pole day ticket is a collectible featuring Jeff Gordon and Cale Yarborough, and the South Carolina 200 ticket includes reserved seating in your choice of either the Pearson Tower or Tyler Tower grandstands. To commemorate the dominance of Gordon and Yarborough at Darlington Raceway, the track is offering a special, limited-time ticket offer for the upcoming Mountain Dew Southern 500 weekend, August 29-31. Fans may purchase two tickets for The Pantry Pole Day on Friday, August 29 and two tickets for the South Carolina 200 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, August 30, for only $55. This two-day, $55 ticket deal is available only by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket hotline at 843.395.8499 on Thursday, May 15 or Friday, May 16 and asking for the 5+5 ticket offer. Tickets are also available for the 54th running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500 on Sunday, August 31. For more information.on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway. call 843.395.8892, or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(5-12-2003)

  • Nesbitt named director of ticket operations: Norma Nesbitt has been named Director of Ticket Operations at Darlington Raceway, track officials have announced. Nesbitt has worked with the Raceway for almost two decades and in many capacities, including public relations and marketing in addition to ticketing.(Darlington Raceway)(4-3-2003)

  • Guv lends support: Mark Sanford, governor of South Carolina, and several other state leaders were here this weekend to lobby NASCAR not to take the spring race away from the track. Sanford said he will try to ''raise awareness, raise focus, with the corporate community in using this [track] as an entertainment tool, a prospecting tool in a way it's not now.'' He said the two annual Winston Cup races at Darlington bring about $50 million into the state. Darlington appeared to be at about 80% capacity yesterday. Track spokeswoman Cathy Mock said turnout surpassed last year's March event and officials were ''extremely pleased.''(Tennessean)(3-17-2003)

  • Darlington Safe? Rockingham Not? One NASCAR sergeant says the Darlington spring race will be on the schedule in 2004, and the exciting finish there last Sunday only will help. Although Rockingham can kiss its February race good-bye, Darlington apparently will get a reprieve -- at least for next year. There are whispers that the race at Homestead, last on the schedule this year, might move into Rockingham's February date and that California's race, currently in April, might move to the season finale in 2004.(Sporting News)(3-17-2003)

  • Darlington may NOT lose a 2nd Cup race UPDATE: during an interview on XM Satellite- NASCAR Radio - Subscription Required, NASCAR's Jim Hunter, says it is premature to think that Darlington Raceway will lose a Winston Cup race date [rumored to be the spring race in March].(3-14-2003)
    UPDATE: NASCAR has suggested that Darlington Raceway could lose the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 to another track next year. But there's at least one person at the sanctioning body who's not so certain that will happen. NASCAR vice president and chief spokesman Jim Hunter, who spent eight years as Darlington's president, thinks there is a good chance the Winston Cup series will be back next spring. "I think it's premature for people to assume that this place is going to lose a race next year, for example," Hunter said Friday. "I don't think that's going to happen. I would be surprised if that happened." Nothing will be determined soon, Hunter said. NASCAR is talking to all track owners to determine the best schedule for 2004. Hunter said that should be completed by late summer. "I may be wrong, but I would be surprised if this track did not have two races in 2004," Hunter said.(ThatsRacin.com/AP)(3-15-2003)

  • The Darlington Pole Trophy: When the fastest qualifier for the March 16, 2003 Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, the historic 100th NASCAR Winston Cup Series visit to Darlington Raceway, is presented his trophy during pre-race ceremonies, the award will have a different look than in years past. Following a three-week contest and three days of very difficult judging, the track has selected a new design for its pole day trophy. The winning designer is Mark McKellar of Mt. Pleasant, SC. Track staff members expected a good response following the announcement of the track's "Design Darlington Raceway's Pole Day Trophy" contest in January. What they didn't expect was to be overwhelmed. From Rock Hill to Hartsville, Myrtle Beach to Spartanburg, South Carolina residents were not the least bit hesitant to put their ideas and visual impressions of NASCAR's original superspeedway on paper, in graphics files and, in one notable case, in granite, and to submit them for consideration in the contest. Designs ranged from full-scale recreations of the track, complete with flagstand and grandstand seats, to a large number "1" emblazoned with the word "Tamed," a reference to Darlington's famous reputation for being the track "Too Tough To Tame." Several designs incorporated the palmetto, South Carolina's state tree, while others used a more traditional trophy style featuring bronzed driver figures with their arms held high in victory. In the end, judges chose a trophy which reflects Darlington's basic unpretentiousness. McKellar took the track's famous egg shape and literally turned it lengthwise, a vantage point that strongly resembles the letter "D “ for Darlington, of course. Only 12 active drivers have been pole winners at Darlington:. Kurt Busch, Jeremy Mayfield, Jeff Gordon, Dale Jarrett, Mark Martin, Bobby Labonte, Ward Burton, Ricky Craven, John Andretti, Bill Elliott, Ken Schrader and Sterling Marlin. For his winning design, McKellar “ a Johnny Benson fan “ will receive four tickets to all pole day events at Darlington Raceway through the year 2007; four tickets to the March 16 Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 at Darlington Raceway; four admissions to the "Darlington Stripe Zone" fan hospitality area on Sunday, March 16; a guided track tour; and a one-time cash award of $1,000. He will also present the new trophy to its first winner during pre-race ceremonies for the 2003 Carolina Dodge Dealers 400.(Darlington Raceway PR)(3-13-2003)



  • Superbirds at Darlington: On Sunday, March 16, The Winged Warriors, a car club devoted to the preservation, restoration and enjoyment of Dodge and Plymouth automobiles manufactured between 1962 and 1974, will take part in the pre-race parade lap as the track "Too Tough To Tame" hosts its 100th NASCAR Winston Cup Series race, the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400. The parade lap is tentatively scheduled to begin at 11:00am/et. The Dodge and Plymouth "B-Body" cars include RoadRunners, Chargers, Coronets and GTXs. In racing form, these cars were used extensively and successfully in NASCAR, USAC and ARCA events during the 1960s and 70s. The street versions were some of the hottest-selling muscle cars of that era. The Charger 500, a re-design of the 1969 Charger which Dodge.had aerodynamically improved, was the first significant breakthrough for the Chrysler Corporation in special-bodied stock cars. Testing at the proving grounds and on the racetrack proved it to be superior in smooth airflow and reduced drag, but too much rear lift made it virtually uncontrollable. During his qualifying run in his new Charger 500, where he lost control and narrowly missed crashing in the corner due to the lift, Buddy Baker pronounced it to be the most dangerous car he'd ever driven. Back to the drawing board. More revisions were made, including the addition of a rear wing and a pointed nosecone, and the famed Dodge Daytona was born. Following its debut in July 1969, it went on to win many races and set many speed records. In fact, it was the first car ever to go 200 mph on a closed course, and gave Baker his only two Darlington wins. By the end of the 1970 season, NASCAR had effectively banned the Daytona from competitive racing. One Daytona did run in the 1971 Daytona 500, but was restricted to a 350 engine that made the car a non-contender. The cars, called "Winged Warriors," continued to race in USAC and ARCA for many years, and have a rich racing heritage. Cars at Darlington will be traveling from Canada, Oregon, California, Iowa, Ohio, Indiana, Texas, Tennessee, Kentucky, New Jersey, Virginia, Florida, North Carolina, and South Carolina.(Darlington Raceway PR), a few sites dedicated to the cars at wwnboa.org and aerowarriors.com.(3-12-2003)

  • National Anthem at Darlington: Dr. Ann Benson, a professor of music at Columbia College in Columbia, SC, will perform the national anthem during opening ceremonies for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 at Darlington Raceway on March 16. Dr. Benson has been praised for her velvety soprano voice and as a committed singing actress who has captivated audiences both in the US and abroad with dynamic portrayals of operatic heroines. She made her New York operatic debut in the title role of Puccini's Tosca with New York City Opera at Lincoln Center in 1993. A skillful interpreter of art song, Dr. Benson made her 1989 New York City recital debut at Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall. A native of South Carolina, she is a graduate of Columbia College, holds a Master's degree from Indiana University and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of South Carolina. Dr. Benson is currently teaching voice at Columbia College. The 2003 Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 at Darlington Raceway marks the 100th visit of NASCAR's Winston Cup Series to racing's most historic track. For tickets or more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, please contact the Raceway ticket hotline at 843-394-8499. (Darlington Raceway)(3-10-2003)

  • Darlington/ISC Meeting after next weeks race: Darlington Raceway president Andrew Gurtis plans to meet with officials from the track's parent company, International Speedway Corp., after next week's Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 about the future of the facility's spring Winston Cup event. NASCAR is considering moving some events in a schedule realignment for 2004, and the Darlington race is a prime candidate. That issue hasn't stopped Gurtis from laying the groundwork for a spring race in 2004 and beyond. He said the track is "very close" to signing an extension with Carolina Dodge Dealers, the title sponsor of the March event. "We're going full guns ahead," he said Tuesday at the track. "Right now, NASCAR's announcement confirmed the rumors that we're on the bubble. But as far as we're concerned, we've got two dates, and we will have two dates going forward."(Charleston Post and Courier)(3-5-2003)

  • Darlington Names Grand Marshal: South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford will serve as grand marshal during opening ceremonies for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 at Darlington Raceway. The race marks the Cup Series 100th visit to the track. Race weekend at Darlington kicks off on Thursday, March 13, with Bud pole qualifying for the NASCAR Busch and Craftsman Truck Series. Friday, March 14 will feature Bud pole qualifying for the NASCAR Winston Cup Series, followed by the Craftsman 200 NASCAR Truck Series race. On Saturday, March 15, the NASCAR Busch Series returns to the track œToo Tough To Tame in the darlingtonraceway.com 200. On Sunday, March 16, Darlington Raceway will make history once again as the NASCAR Winston Cup Series runs its 100th race, the 2003 Carolina Dodge Dealers 400.(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-18-2003)

  • Dodge Six-Pack at Darlington is back - starting Feb 3rd thru 8th: The Dodge Six-Pack, one of the most popular ticket packages ever created for race fans, returns for its fourth year, by popular demand. The promotion will officially kick off during the Monday, February 3 broadcast of the syndicated Big Show, hosted by John Boy and Billy, and will run through Saturday, February 8. The Dodge Six-Pack is a unique opportunity designed to offer fans affordably-priced racing action at NASCAR's most historic facility, Darlington Raceway. The package includes six reserved grandstand seats for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, March 16 at the track "Too Tough To Tame." Total cost for the Six-Pack of NASCAR Winston Cup Series race tickets is only $150. An added bonus for fans this year is the fact that the 2003 Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 will make the NASCAR Winston Cup Series 100th visit to Darlington Raceway. The track has produced a special commemorative ticket for this historic event, so Dodge Six-Pack purchasers will get not only a great day of racing, but a unique keepsake to go along with it. The Dodge Six-Pack will get an added push from John Boy and Billy. The popular syndicated radio talk show personalities are among NASCAR's biggest supporters. Tune in nearly any Monday morning during race season and the odds are high that you=ll hear the previous day's winner discussing what it took to get him across the finish line with the show's personable hosts, who interact knowledgeably -- and humorously -- with the drivers, often asking the sorts of questions you're not likely to hear during post-race television interviews. The Dodge Six-Pack will be available beginning February 3. The promotion runs through Saturday, February 8, or while supplies last. Quantities are limited for this popular offer, and tickets go quickly, so fans are encouraged to call early. To purchase your Dodge Six-Pack, call the Raceway ticket office at (843) 395-8499.(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-3-2003)

  • Darlington Expects to keep both Cup races: Darlington Speedway president Andrew Gurtis says fans of the race track shouldn't be worried about the possibility of losing one of its races. "I am confident NASCAR will be here for two races in 2004," Gurtis said on Wednesday. "Darlington is the original superspeedway even before Daytona and our situation hasn't changed."(Florence Morning News)(1-23-2003)

  • Design Darlington Trophy Contest: Darlington Raceway is sponsoring its "Design Darlington Raceway's Pole Day Trophy" contest through January 31. The contest is open to South Carolina residents, and the winner will have the opportunity to present the new trophy to the polesitter for the 2003 Carolina Dodge Dealers 400. The grand prize also includes $1,000 cash, five years' worth of admission tickets for all pole day events at Darlington Raceway, and tickets to the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, Darlington Raceway's 100th NASCAR Winston Cup event. Designs may be submitted in a variety of ways. Hand-drawn or sculpted designs are acceptable, along with computer-generated graphic images. In keeping with her long tradition of sporting pride and Southern hospitality, Darlington's new trophy will offer tangible evidence of its winners' achievements at the toughest track in all of racing. Trophy design submissions may be mailed or sent electronically. The contest ends on January 31, and the winner will be selected and announced the following week. For tickets or Contest information visit www.darlingtonraceway.com.(1-17-2003)

  • Holidays Perfect Time to Thank Designated Drivers: This holiday season DuBard Inc. and Darlington Raceway will team with Anheuser-Busch to reward and thank designated drivers. This holiday season, that work includes communicating with adult consumers about the importance of being or using a designated driver, both to save lives and show they care about friends and family. Part of this effort involves www.designateddriver.com, a website where adult consumers can go to get information, enter for a chance to win valuable prizes (such as a Budweiser Designated Driver Thank-You gift card worth $20,000), and send a special electronic greeting card to thank their designated driver. Locally, DuBard Inc. and Darlington Raceway have teamed up this holiday season to thank designated drivers and encourage others to use a designated driver not only this holiday season but throughout the year. ""At various on-premise accounts in our area we will offer designated drivers the opportunity to win prizes which will include Budweiser Designated Driver Thank You gift cards worth $25," said Michael Singletary, Asst. VP of Operations for DuBard Inc.. Also, Darlington Raceway will reward a 'Designated Driver of the Week' for the next three weeks with a pair of race tickets to this spring's "DarlingtonRaceway.com 200". For more information, visit www.beeresponsible.com.(Darlington Raceway)(12-10-2002)

  • 100th Cup Race for Darlington in March 2003: The number 99 denotes a threshold, a precipice of sorts, the last lap before a landmark line is forever crossed. On Sunday, March 16, 2003, Darlington Raceway will mark this milestone when the track "Too Tough To Tame" hosts the NASCAR Winston Cup Series for the 100th time. The tale of how NASCAR's original superspeedway came into being is one of the most legendary stories in all of racing. Nearly everything about the track, in fact, seems shrouded in a combination of the swirling mists of legend and the gritty, shifting sands of the South Carolina lowcountry where the fabled facility makes her home. The first 'official' conversation on the subject of building a racetrack in a Darlington County peanut field was held over a Saturday night poker game in the town jail. The Raceway's entire configuration was altered to accommodate a landowner's love of fishing. The retaining wall leaves its mark not only on a driver's car, but on his very psyche. Everything about the track is unique. With one foot planted firmly in the past and the other marching forward with her characteristic flair, she is in many ways a throwback “ but one who still packs a very mean fastball. On Labor Day of 1950, an entirely new sporting event showed its stuff to a packed house of appreciative spectators, who would go on to become diehard fans of this new, never-before witnessed style of racing. Until that day, stock cars raced on dirt, on sand and on almost any other surface they could find, but never before had they come together in an organized manner to race on blacktop asphalt. Fifty-three years and 99 races later, they're still coming back for more. In 99 NASCAR Winston Cup Series races so far, only 38 different drivers have visited Victory Lane at Darlington Raceway. David Pearson, Dale Earnhardt, Sr., Jeff Gordon and Cale Yarborough alone have taken 30 of the 99 checkered flags waved over the sport's first paved superspeedway. Only 10 drivers currently active in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series are able to feature Darlington Raceway in their trophy cases. On March 16, 2003, one name will make racing history by taking its place as the 100th entry in the record books. The track rightly considers its 100th NASCAR Winston Cup Series race to be a landmark event, and plans to promote it as such. These plans include specially-designed logos; a commemorative souvenir program cover and other printed materials; a collectible event ticket; and customized merchandise prominently featuring the event. The 100th race also coincides with the scheduled gala re-opening of the newly renovated and expanded Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum and National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame. Tickets for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 on Sunday, March 16, as well as the darlingtonraceway.com 200 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, March 15 and the Too Tough To Tame 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race on Friday, March 14, are available now by calling the Raceway ticket hotline at 843.395.8499, or by logging onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway)(12-3-2002)

  • Darlington Lights.....in 2003? Darlington Raceway could host a night race as soon as next season. The track is exploring the possibility of using temporary lights for the 2003 Southern 500, with permanent lights going up in time for the 2004 Labor Day weekend race. Track president Andrew Gurtis confirmed in August that officials from the raceway and the cable television network TNT, which broadcasts the race, were discussing the possibility of adding lights to NASCAR's oldest superspeedway. Representatives of Musco Lighting, the Iowa-based company that has lit a number of Winston Cup tracks, have also visited Darlington several times to perform preliminary surveys.(Charleston Post and Courier)(11-16-2002)

  • Darlington Tix to go on sale Nov 18th: Tickets for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, March 16, 2003 at Darlington Raceway, will go on sale to the general public on Monday, November 18, 2002. Darlington Raceway's spring race weekend, the first of the legendary track's two annual NASCAR Winston Cup weekends, is one of the few times during the racing season when fans can see all three of NASCAR's premier series in a single weekend. For tickets or more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call the Raceway ticket hotline at 843.395.8499, or log onto www.darlingtonraceway.com.(Darlington Raceway PR)(11-14-2002)

  • Darlington Museum and more lights: Darlington Raceway president Andrew Gurtis announced that Darlington Raceway will expand the Joe Weatherly Hall of Fame and National Motorsports Press Association’s Hall of Fame by 3,300 square feet, bringing the facility to a total of more than 10,000 square feet. The cost of the project, Gurtis said, is in the “middle six-figure range.” Construction is expected to begin before the end of the year, and will be complete by the spring of 2003. There has been speculation recently that Darlington would add lights to the 52-year-old track in order to hold night races. That will happen, Gurtis said, but first things first. The museum, which was built in 1965, has drawn thousands of tourists and race fans annually. The expansion, Gurtis noted, should bring with it an increase in the size of those crowds.(The State)(9-19-2002)

  • Benny the Grand Marshal at Darlington: Popular NBC/TNT broadcaster and 1973 NASCAR Winston Cup champion Benny Parsons will serve as grand marshal for the Mountain Dew Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. Parsons, winner of the 1975 Daytona 500, earned 21 Winston Cup wins and 20 pole positions during his career. His only Darlington win came in the 1978 Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, the track's spring event. Parsons "championship season was one of endurance“ he won only one race that year, but drove the most miles. Second-place finisher Cale Yarborough won four times, and David Pearson, who finished the year in third place, won 11 times in only 18 events. Parsons was the first NASCAR Winston Cup competitor to qualify for a race faster than 200 mph, which he did for the 1982 Winston 500 at Talladega Superspeedway with a speed of 200.176mph. After retiring from competition after the 1988 season, Parsons went on to become a highly respected analyst on NASCAR racing telecasts, winning a NASCAR Emmy in 1996. He currently serves as part of the NBC/TNT broadcast team, which will commentate the Gatorade 200 NASCAR Busch Series race and the Mountain Dew Southern 500 NASCAR Winston Cup Series race at Darlington this weekend.(Darlington Raceway PR)(8-30-2002)

  • Emergency Measures in place at Darlington: All necessary precautionary/emergency measures will be in place at Darlington Raceway throughout this Southern 500 weekend. The Specialized Emergency Response Team from the Darlington County Emergency Preparedness Department will be on standby for the races and festivities. Darlington County EPD Director Robbin Brock said in the event their services are required, members of the SERT rope rescue team are capable of rappelling off the highest structures in the county -- which are at the track. Track officials are also taking the necessary precautionary measures. First-aid stations will be located on the track frontstretch behind the Pearson and Tyler Tower grandstands. Another will be behind the Colvin grandstand on the backstretch side.(Morning News)(8-29-2002)

  • Darlington Security FAQ: Answers to some frequently asked questions at Darlington Raceway:
    May I bring a personal cooler to the Raceway?
    Yes. Each person attending events at Darlington Raceway may bring two bags, one of which may be a 6x6x12 inch cooler.
    Have the rules about beer or food in the grandstands changed?
    The policies regarding food and beverage in the grandstands have not changed. You may still bring beverages and food with you, but understand that all bags are subject to search when you enter the grandstand gates.
    Where can I get a 6x6x12 cooler?
    Most department stores that carry outdoor supplies will carry small coolers that are the appropriate size. During the event weekend, the Darlington Raceway gift shop will have plenty of coolers available.
    Will I be able to fit what I need in these smaller coolers?
    A 6x6x12 cooler holds approximately 10 cans of soda with ice, or any number of lunch item and beverage combinations.
    What is the difference between an admission gate and a grandstand gate?
    Admission gates are all of the main gates you pass through when you enter the facility. Grandstand gates are all of the smaller gates you pass through if you have a grandstand seat.
    Can I leave my cooler outside the grandstand gates?
    Unfortunately, items not allowed in the grandstands will not be allowed to accumulate along the grandstand fence lines.
    I'm camping in the infield. Does this mean I can't bring my large cooler to my campsite?
    The new policies are only for the grandstand gates, not admission gates. You can take your cooler, any size, to your campsite, but won't be able to bring it into the grandstand area unless it conforms to current specifications.
    What about my camera, scanner and binoculars? Can I bring them into the grandstands in the bags they are stored in?
    These items should either be carried around your neck or in a clear (18x18x4) plastic bag. Again, please remember that all items are subject to search when you enter the grandstand areas. Your admission will be speedier with fewer bags to be searched.(Darlington Raceway PR)(8-29-2002)

  • National Anthem at Darlington: Emmy-nominated actress Gloria Reuben will perform the national anthem during pre-race ceremonies for the 53rd running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway on September 1. Reuben has emerged as one of Hollywood's most sought-after actresses after having made her mark in feature films, television and music. She is currently starring as Lisa Fabrizzi in the CBS prime time drama series The Agency. She also appeared in two CBS feature films, Salem Witch Trials and Little John, in spring 2002. Notably known as health care professional Jeannie Boulet on the critically acclaimed NBC series ER, Reuben earned multiple Emmy nominations and a Golden Globe nomination. Tickets for all three days of racing at Darlington are still available by calling the Raceway ticket hotline at (843) 395-8499.(Darlington Raceway PR)(8-27-2002)

  • Lights at Darlington in 2004? Darlington president Andrew Gurtis says he has had positive meetings with NASCAR, cable broadcast station TNT and the International Speedway Corp. about lighting up the circuit's oldest superspeedway - perhaps in time for the 2004 Southern 500. Gurtis said several factors, like cost of the project, were still unknown because of pending decisions - should Darlington use permanent or temporary lights, how quickly can lights go up, will light poles be installed along the infield as well as the outside, will the track get help from TNT with the cost. NASCAR spokesman Jim Hunter said Tuesday that NASCAR was very interested this time in a nighttime Southern 500 run on the Sunday of Labor Day weekend. The outline would have a Busch Grand National event on Saturday night with the Southern 500, considered one of the crown jewels of Winston Cup, the following evening. Gurtis didn't think Darlington would have any official decisions until well after next week's Southern 500. There would likely not be enough time to make all the changes necessary for lights next year.(ThatsRacin/com/AP)(8-21-2002)

  • Mountain Dew announces "Road to Darlington" incentive program: Mountain Dew and PepsiCo announced the details of a unique crew incentive program called the "Road to Darlington." The announcement was made during a press conference held at Darlington Raceway, featuring Jeremy Mayfield, driver of the #19 Mountain Dodge [for the Southern 500] owned by Evernham Motorsports. Through the program, which kicked off August 11 at Watkins Glen, the Dew Crew can earn cash bonuses based on top-five or first-place finishes at the events leading up to the Mountain Dew Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway September 1. Larger bonuses will be paid for a top-five or first-place finish at Darlington. The total amount up for grabs over the course of the four races is $100,000. The team finished the Sirius Satellite Radio at The Glen in the number 15 spot. "Mountain Dew wanted to show the Dew Crew that we're behind them every step of the way, and the ˜Road to Darlington" is just one more way to display our support," said John Stamatis, marketing manager for Pepsi Racing. "The program is meant to reward all of the crew and shop members who work so hard behind the scenes and give up so much of their time in order for the No. 19 team to be a success." Mountain Dew has been a sponsor of the #19 Dew Crew and the Mountain Dew Southern 500 since 2001. NASCAR Winston Cup racing's fall classic, the Mountain Dew Southern 500, returns to Darlington Raceway August 30 through September 1. The weekend will kick off with Bud Pole Qualifying for both the NASCAR Busch and Winston Cup Series on Friday, August 30, followed by the South Carolina 200 BGN race on Saturday, August 31. On Sunday, September 1, Jeremy Mayfield and the Dew Crew will hit the track, along with the rest of the NASCAR Winston Cup field, for the 53rd running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500. Tickets for all three days of racing at Darlington are available(Darlington Raceway PR)(8-15-2002)

  • Two Race Dates for Darlington in 2003: Darlington Raceway will have two Winston Cup races next year. ''We can't talk about dates, NASCAR hasn't released its schedule yet,'' Darlington president Andrew Gurtis said Tuesday. ''But we've got two dates in 2003 and we're tickled about it.'' Gurtis' goal is to sell out the upcoming Southern 500 on Sept. 1. That would be the first time in three years and, he said, a major benchmark for the raceway. Gurtis thought the spring race, the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, that's traditionally run in mid-March also would include the BGN and CTS as it did this year. The raceway has one year left on its sponsorship agreement with the Carolina Dodge Dealers Association, which began with the 2001 spring race. The event has been part of the Winston Cup schedule for decades, but has rarely had the same buzz as the Southern 500, considered one of racing's most famous and coveted titles. Soon after Gurtis succeeded Jim Hunter, now NASCAR's chief spokesman, at Darlington last year, reports had the track being sold to Bruton Smith, who owns Lowe's Motor Speedway and Atlanta Motor Speedway among others, to take its race dates away. Both Hunter and Smith denied the rumors. But Gurtis says Hunter told him ''to expect some stuff out of Charlotte'' and Smith.(Independent Tribune/AP)(8-14-2002)

  • Darlington 6-Pack Back: The popular Mountain Dew Six-Pack will make a repeat appearance – albeit a short one – July 28 through August 4. The ticket package has become a favorite among race fans everywhere. The promotion will officially kick off on Sunday afternoon, July 28, and will run until the checkered flag falls on the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday, August 4, while supplies last. The Mountain Dew Six- Pack is a unique opportunity designed to offer fans affordably priced racing action at NASCAR’s original superspeedway. The package includes six reserved grandstand seats for the Mountain Dew Southern 500, September 1st at Darlington Raceway, for only $120. The Mountain Six- Pack is available only until August 4, while supplies last, and can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket hotline at (843) 395-8499.(Darlington Raceway Site)(7-29-2002)

  • Darlington Sues Dura-Lube UPDATE: South Carolina International Speedway Corporation—which owns and operates the Darlington Raceway—has filed a breach of contract suit against the Dura-Lube Corporation, alleging the company failed to pay more than $375,000 in sponsorship fees for the Dura-Lube 200 Busch Series races in Darlington in 2000 and 2001. In a suit filed at the Darlington County Courthouse, it's claimed Dura-Lube agreed to pay $675,000 to the SCISC for sponsoring Busch races at the Darlington Raceway from 1999 to 2001. Dura-Lube paid the $200,000 it owed for 1999, but only paid $100,000 out of the $225,000 it owed for the 2000 race and paid nothing on the $250,000 it owed for the 2001 race, for a total unpaid bill of $375,000. SCISC also requests punitive, consequential and incidental damages "flowing from the breach and any other damages the court deems just and proper," the suit reads.(The News and Press main page, doesn't have archives)(6-22-2002)
    UPDATE: In papers filed June 13 with the Darlington County Clerk of Court, the Darlington Raceway accuses Dura Lube of breach of contract for allegedly failing to pay sponsorship fees owed over the course of a three-year agreement that began in 1999. Dura Lube has been a title sponsor of five BGN races at Darlington. In the suit, the track claims Dura Lube paid its full sponsorship fee of $200,000 for 1999, but paid only $100,000 of $225,000 owed for 2000 and none of the $250,000 owed for 2001. The track is seeking the $375,000 balance, along with incidental, consequential, and punitive damages. "Dura Lube was afforded all sponsorship benefits, but nonetheless failed to pay the remainder of sponsorship fees," the suit said. As recently as two years ago, Dura Lube was a major sponsor of NASCAR racing, with its name on Winston Cup events in Phoenix and Rockingham, in addition to BGN races at Darlington. According to the lawsuit, in June of 1999 Dura Lube entered into a three-year agreement to become the title sponsor of Darlington's fall BGN race. That same year, the Federal Trade Commission charged the marketers of Dura Lube with making false and unsubstantiated advertising claims, in violation of federal law. In 2000, the FTC ordered the corporation to pay $2 million that was distributed back to consumers. Soon afterward, Dura Lube got out of racing. Although its agreement with Darlington was to remain effective through Sept. 1, 2001, the corporation was not a title sponsor of the 2000 or 2001 fall Busch races at the track. Dura Lube did have a presence on tickets and some other items that had been printed well in advance.(Charleton Post and Courier)(6-26-2002)

  • Lights at Darlingtion: haven't heard much on this in a while: Darlington Raceway's appearance has been substantially altered over the past decade. Before he left to become NASCAR's vice president of corporate communications, former track president Jim Hunter added a massive new grandstand, consolidated pit road, and spruced up as many of the infield facilities as he could. Hunter's biggest idea - adding lights, so the 52-year-old speedway could host night races - was never embraced by NASCAR's former television partners. But according to Darlington's current president, the hopes of lighting the sport's oldest superspeedway haven't dimmed. "I think it's still realistic," Andrew Gurtis, who succeeded Hunter last year, said Tuesday. "I think ultimately, that's a business decision for Darlington Raceway. I do not think its age weighs into that question. If they can make it work at Daytona, we can make it work at Darlington." Prior to the 1999 season, Hunter met with representatives of MUSCO - the company that lit Daytona International Speedway and Lowe's Motor Speedway near Charlotte - about the possibility of adding lights at Darlington. The price tag at the time was about $2 million. The expense of adding lights, Gurtis said, would have to be offset by some benefit the lights bring to the race track. The best fit for a Darlington night race is the Southern 500 on Labor Day weekend, because of the holiday and the warmer weather. But that race is almost always a sellout in the daytime. Darlington would have to confer with NASCAR and the television network broadcasting the Labor Day race - in this case, TNT - before any lights go up. But Gurtis cautioned that the realization of such a project would be several years down the road.(Charleston Post and Courier)(3-6-2002)

  • Darlington 6 Pack and special Elliott pole ticket: Darlington Raceway is offering the Dodge 6 pack promotion for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 on March 17, 2002. For $120, you can purchase 6 seats to the Winston Cup Race at the track "too tough to tame."
    AND Darlington Raceway's spring 2002 collectible pole day ticket, 15th in the series, will feature perennially popular NASCAR Winston Cup star Bill Elliott. Thursday, March 14 will feature qualifying for the Too Tough To Tame 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race. On Friday, March 15, the stars of the Cup and BGN Series will take to the track for Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 and darlingtonraceway.com 200 qualifying, followed by the Too Tough To Tame 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race. The collectible pole day ticket featuring Bill Elliott is good for admission to all three events. Cost of this limited edition collectible is $20. Fans purchasing tickets for the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 will receive a free collectible T-shirt with each order, while supplies last.(Darlington PR)(2-13-2002)

  • Darlington Cup Spring Date: Darlington Raceway (reps) said Tuesday that its yearly spring race, the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, was on for March 17, 2002. "Spring fever will officially come to Darlington on March 15-17, 2002," the track announced. Track officials have sent out ticket renewals for the spring event, spokeswoman Cathy Mock said. NASCAR's oldest superspeedway has had two races on the Winston Cup circuit each year since 1957. Darlington president Andrew Gurtis, named to the position in March to replace longtime raceway leader Jim Hunter, says he was prepared for the cracks at his facility. Darlington was built in the late 1940s by Harold Brasington before concepts like luxury boxes and premium seating. But Gurtis says with Hunter as a vice president of International Speedway Corp., which owns Darlington among its stable of tracks, he's "confident that there's always a place for Darlington." Hunter said at the racetrack this weekend that he would fight "with my last breathe to keep the races at Darlington."(ESPN/AP)(9-5-2001)

  • Darlington Spring Race Moves? UPDATE Looks like yes but... Darlington will replace Rockingham as the second race of the year. Rockingham has hosted the second race of the season since 1992. Before that, the second race alternated between Rockingham and Richmond; and Daytona, when Riverside remained on the schedule. The change in schedule for next season will allow Fox to begin coverage of the first half of the season at Darlington. NBC and Fox rotate coverage of the season-opening Daytona 500. NBC will broadcast the race in 2002. Sources said Rockingham's first race of the 2002 season will move to April, likely one of the weeks following the April 7 race at Talladega. The track's second race will continue to remain near the end of the season's schedule(That's Racin')(7-6-2001)
    UPDATE: In a reversal of plans, NASCAR has decided not to move next season's spring Winston Cup race at Darlington up to the second race of the season. Darlington Raceway officials were made aware of the proposed change in July, but sources confirmed Monday NASCAR has now backed off the move and will likely keep the second race of the season at North Carolina Speedway in Rockingham, which has hosted the race since 1992. The proposed change in schedule for next season would have allowed Fox to begin coverage of the first half of the season at Darlington. NBC and Fox rotate coverage of the season-opening Daytona 500. NBC will broadcast the race in 2002. Sources said Darlington's first race of the 2002 season could move to the spot that was reserved for Rockingham - Sunday, April 21. This season's spring date was March 18. Darlington Raceway officials declined to comment on the change Monday, preferring to wait until NASCAR releases its schedule, expected by next month(That's Racin')(8-15-2001)

  • Johnson at Darlington: Legendary driver and car owner Junior Johnson is the grand marshal for the Sept. 2 Mountain Dew Southern 500 at Darlington(Winston Cup Scene - need sub to read online)(8-9-2001)

  • Darlington Spring Race Moves? Darlington will replace Rockingham as the second race of the year. Rockingham has hosted the second race of the season since 1992. Before that, the second race alternated between Rockingham and Richmond; and Daytona, when Riverside remained on the schedule. The change in schedule for next season will allow Fox to begin coverage of the first half of the season at Darlington. NBC and Fox rotate coverage of the season-opening Daytona 500. NBC will broadcast the race in 2002. Sources said Rockingham's first race of the 2002 season will move to April, likely one of the weeks following the April 7 race at Talladega. The track's second race will continue to remain near the end of the season's schedule(That's Racin')(7-6-2001)

  • Darlington Keeps Both Race Dates: It happens every year - the weather heats up, the points race tightens, and reports begin to surface that suggest Darlington Raceway will lose one of its two Winston Cup events for next season. This year is no different. With the 2002 Winston Cup schedule due out in the coming months, some reports have all but written off the spring race at NASCAR's oldest superspeedway. Just one problem: it's not going to happen. "NASCAR has confirmed that Darlington Raceway will have two Winston Cup weekends in 2002," track spokeswoman Cathy Mock said Monday. Whether the spring event at Darlington will be moved from its current place on the calendar - in mid-March, making it the fifth event of the season - likely won't be known until NASCAR releases the schedule, Mock added(Charleston Post and Courier)(6-19-2001)

  • Darlington Race Dates Safe: Andrew Gurtis, who has been given the assignment of overseeing the start of Darlington Raceway's second half-century, said Wednesday that the track will continue to host two NASCAR Winston Cup races each year. NASCAR's original superspeedway, Darlington has failed to sell out either of its Winston Cup races the past few seasons, and the track periodically appears in media reports as a possible candidate for losing a date to other facilities. Gurtis, who officially will replace Jim Hunter as Darlington president in September but already is on the job, heard those rumors and said Wednesday the track's schedule is safe(Greenville News)(5-3-2001)

  • More on Darlington and Smith: Whenever NASCAR comes to Texas, there's always talk about what Bruton Smith might do to get another Cup date for this track if NASCAR continues to decline to award one. The latest report is that Smith intends to buy Darlington Raceway and move both of the Cup dates away from that track - one to Texas and the other to his track at Las Vegas. Darlington Raceway spokeswoman Cathy Mock denied such a deal was being considered, and the track's former president, Jim Hunter, also waved off the report here at Texas. Such a deal seems absurd on the surface, since Darlington is owned by International Speedway Corporation, the Daytona Beach-based sister company of NASCAR with which Smith's SMI has had a long and storied rivalry. Those spreading the story, however, say that ISC has a heavy load of debt and that Smith might be willing to pay a premium price for Darlington in order to get the two dates. Smith would take the heat for moving the dates away from Darlington while ISC would sell off a track that has had trouble filling its seats in recent years(That's Racin')(4-1-2001)

  • Smith to buy Darlington? UPDATE Not: In his bid for a second Winston Cup date here at Texas Motor Speedway, and a possible second date at Las Vegas, Bruton Smith has made an offer to buy Darlington Raceway from the France family for an undisclosed price, according to NASCAR sources. Smith yesterday wouldn't confirm that an offer had been made, but he did say there had been "meetings" with the Frances on the subject of the South Carolina race track(Winston-Salem Journal)(3-28-2001)
    UPDATE: The Winston-Salem Journal reported Wednesday that Bruton Smith has made an offer to buy Darlington Raceway in his quest to get a second race date at his track in Texas and a second race date possibly at his track in Las Vegas. Smith wouldn't confirm that an offer was made but said there had been a meeting with the France family with intentions to purchase the track. Darlington Raceway Public Relations Director Cathy Mock said the reports are false and that the track is not for sale. "It is completely fabricated," Mock said. "It has absolutely no basis whatsoever. It's a complete falsehood. It's so wrong that it's almost laughable. Bruton Smith is mistaken."(Lap by Lap)(3-29-2001)

  • Rethinking Qualifying: Darlington president Jim Hunter said the track and NASCAR will rethink the abbreviated Winston Cup schedule for the track's spring race. Until this year qualifying was held on Friday. But Saturday's qualifying for the Cup race at Darlington was fogged out to get in a morning practice for Winston Cup drivers(That's Racin'/AP)(3-19-2001)

  • Six Pack UPDATE: Darlington and Rockingham are offering their Pepsi Six-Pack ticket package again this year. The package includes six reserved grandstand seats at for the Feb. 25th Dura-Lube 400 at North Carolina Speedway(The Rock), plus six reserved grandstand seats for the March 18th Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 at Darlington Raceway. Cost for the package is $240(Darlington Raceway PR)(2-5-2001)
    UPDATE: The Pepsi Six-Pack is available only for a limited time, from February 5 through February 12, 2001(2-7-2001)

  • Darlington Sponsor: Suncom renewed its sponsorship of the BGN race at Darlington Raceway. The March 17 race will be called the SunCom 200. The telecommunications company is headquartered in Charleston, SC. Last month, Darlington said it's spring Winston Cup race for the next three years would be called the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400(Speed Magazine)(12-13-2000)

  • Darlington gets sponsor: Darlington Raceway announced Tuesday that Dodge has joined forces as a marketing partner, and will sponsor the track's Spring NASCAR Winston Cup event. The Carolina Dodge Dealers association has signed a three-year commitment to sponsor Darlington Raceway's first NASCAR Winston Cup Series race of year, naming the March 18, 2001 event the "Carolina Dodge Dealers 400." In addition to race entitlement rights, Dodge will become the "Official Car and Official Truck" of Darlington Raceway, as of January 2001. A Dodge Intrepid will lead the field as the Pace Car in all NASCAR Winston Cup and Busch Series weekends.(Darlington PR)(11-28-2000)

  • Truck Race at Darlington? UPDATE 2: Amid all the speculation of whether Darlington Raceway will lose a race date(Cup), NASCAR's oldest superspeedway is trying to add another one. Track president Jim Hunter said Monday that Darlington is pursuing a Craftsman Truck Series race for next year, with the lone remaining hurdle being whether the speedway can secure a favorable date. Hunter has offered three possible dates to NASCAR, although he declined to say when those dates are(Charleston Post and Courier)(5-23-2000)
    UPDATE - Truck Race at Darlington: The oldest superspeedway in NASCAR will host the sport's youngest national circuit beginning next year. Darlington Raceway will host a Craftsman Truck Series event in the spring of 2001, a source close to NASCAR confirmed on Monday. The formal announcement will be made today in a noon press conference at the track. Although Darlington Raceway officials declined to comment, the source said the Truck Series race will be separate from the track's two 2001 Winston Cup/Grand National weekends. The Truck Series race will likely be paired with an event from the NASCAR Goody's Dash touring series to comprise a third weekend of racing at the 1.366-mile oval.(Charleston Post and Courier) AND Qualifying for the trucks and NASCAR's sub-compact series cars will be on Friday, May 11, and the races will be run back-to-back the next afternoon, beginning at 1:00pm/et. If negotiations are successful, the car-crushing Monster trucks -- which appeared at Darlington earlier this summer -- would perform following the truck race(The State) UPDATE 2: Darlington Raceway will host its first-ever Craftsman Truck Series event the weekend of May 11-12, 2001, giving the track a third major racing weekend for the year, in addition to the two weekends of BGN and Cup activity already a part of the track's storied history and tradition.The CTS race weekend will also include a NASCAR Goody's Dash race and, hopefully, Monster Truck races. The weekend will begin with qualifying and practice for both the Goody's Dash cars and the Craftsman Trucks on Friday, May 11, with a double-header (actually a triple-header including Monster Truck competition) race day on Saturday, May 12. The Goody's Dash division ran at Darlington in the early 1980s. The Dash Series features six-cylinder cars such as Pontiac Sunfires, Mercuries, and Toyotas. Drivers like the late Davey Allison, Bobby Labonte, Larry Pearson, Michael Waltrip, and Phil Parsons cut their NASCAR racing teeth in this division. Reserved and unreserved tickets are currently on sale for the inaugural event, and may be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway Ticket Office at (843)395-8499. NASCAR fans can purchase a ticket to North Carolina Speedway's Winston Cup race on October 22, and a ticket to Darlington's inaugural CTS race on May 12, 2001 for $100. The special ticket offer will run from Tuesday, September 12 until Sunday, September 24(Darlington Raceway PR)(9-12-2000)

  • Truck Race at Darlington? Amid all the speculation of whether Darlington Raceway will lose a race date(Cup), NASCAR's oldest superspeedway is trying to add another one. Track president Jim Hunter said Monday that Darlington is pursuing a Craftsman Truck Series race for next year, with the lone remaining hurdle being whether the speedway can secure a favorable date. Hunter has offered three possible dates to NASCAR, although he declined to say when those dates are(Charleston Post and Courier)(5-23-2000)
    UPDATE: look for the CTS to get a May or June standalone date at the famed Darlington Raceway in 2001. A likely support series candidate could be the Goody's Dash series cars.(TNN Motorsports)(9-8-2000)

  • Darlington Sponsor: The spring Winston Cup race at Darlington Raceway will have a new title sponsor next season for the second time in as many years. Track president Jim Hunter confirmed Thursday that Mall.com, the Internet shopping service which sponsored the race last March, will not return as title sponsor in 2001. Mall.com acquired the title sponsorship from TranSouth Financial, which in February sold the naming rights for the Darlington spring event it had held for 17 years. Mall.com had a three-year option which was not picked up(Charleston Post and Courier)(8-26-2000)

  • Darlington/Rockingham Tix Plan: during the Michigan race it was mentioned on MRN radio that a "12 pack" ticket promotion is available for the Southern 500 at Darlington and the October race at Rockingham. The package would be for six tickets to Darlington and six tickets to Rockingham for $240.00. The ticket offer is only good from August 20-26, 2000. Tickets can be purchased by calling the North Carolina Speedway ticket office only. See the North Carolina Speedway site for the number, but no information is posted there about the program(8-22-2000)

  • Scott Elected: The late Wendell Scott will become the first black member of the National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame in an induction ceremony in Darlington on Sept. 2. Scott, pioneer track operator Clay Earles and innovative motorsports promoter Wayne Robertson were elected to the hall, which is located at Darlington Raceway, in voting by members of the NMPA, an organization of auto racing journalists(Greenville News)(8-4-2000)

  • Darlington to Stay? Not only does Darlington Raceway President Jim Hunter expect to keep both his Winston Cup races in 2001, he also hopes to add a couple more. Possibly bringing a CTS and Goody's Dash Series to Darlington. Hunter said plans would be finalized after the Daytona race on July 1st. The additional races would not replace either Winston Cup race at Darlington, he said. With NASCAR's expansion into new and larger markets every year -- Chicago and Kansas City have been granted dates for 2000 -- there always is speculation that one of the current tracks on the Winston Cup circuit will lose a race date. Darlington and Rockingham, being in small markets, perennially top the list(The State)(6-22-2000)

  • Darlington CTS Race? Darlington Raceway president Jim Hunter has proposed hosting a truck event next season, and agreeing on a date seems to be the final hurdle. A Darlington truck race would likely be on a weekend separate from the track's two Cup/BGN weekends, and perhaps be paired with a Goody's Dash Series event(Charleston Post and Courier)(6-21-2000)

  • Darlington Hotels..cheap: Race fans tired of high prices and minimum stays will get a little relief at the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway this Labor Day weekend. Track officials have arranged with about 20 hotels in Myrtle Beach and Columbia to offer special rates for the upcoming races held Sept. 1-3. Each area is about an hour from the historic 1.366-mile oval. Track spokeswoman Francis Seegars said the discounts would be as much as 15 percent off normal rates, "although some are even more than that." There will also be no minimum stays, she said. Some area hotels charges as much as $150 a night during race week and force guests into a two-or three-night stay. Fans who call Darlington Raceway will be given information about the hotels with special rates, along with information about other rooms available closer to the area(AP/Speed Magazine)(6-7-2000)

  • Truck Race at Darlington? Amid all the speculation of whether Darlington Raceway will lose a race date(Cup), NASCAR's oldest superspeedway is trying to add another one. Track president Jim Hunter said Monday that Darlington is pursuing a Craftsman Truck Series race for next year, with the lone remaining hurdle being whether the speedway can secure a favorable date. Hunter has offered three possible dates to NASCAR, although he declined to say when those dates are(Charleston Post and Courier)(5-23-2000)

  • Darlington Spring race gone? The days of the Mall.com 400 at Darlington Raceway may be numbered. Darlington, NASCAR's oldest superspeedway with a history that stretches back 50 years, is fighting a losing battle on several fronts to retain both of its coveted Winston Cup dates with new tracks scheduled to open soon and empty seats at the spring race(Speed Magazine)(3-21-2000)

  • Darlington more $$: The newly renamed Mall.com 400 at Darlington Raceway will offer more than $2.2 million in prize money, up from $1.8 million a year ago. The winner of the March 19 event will receive a first prize of more than $100,000(SpeedNet)(2-25-2000)

  • Darlington Pit Road UPDATE 3: hearing that Darlington Raceway will go to one pit road in 2000, if not for the spring race, by the Southern 500. At present there are 28 front stretch, 15 back stretch pit stalls. That will leave Bristol as the only Cup track with two pit roads(12-12-1999) -- UPDATE: hearing construction is happening right now, so pit road should be ready for the Spring race(12-13-1999) -- UPDATE 2: A seat in Pearson Tower, Darlington Raceway’s Turn Four tower grandstand, will be in bigger demand now that NASCAR’s original superspeedway is putting all of pit road on the front stretch. They are adding seven pit stalls on the front end of pit road going into Turn One, and eight stalls will be added on the Turn Four end. Thre changes will be ready for the BGN and CUP races at Darlington in March 2000. Drivers will face entering and exiting pit road from new locations(Darlington Raceway Site)(12-28-1999) -- UPDATE 3: Final touches were added last weekend to the new pit road. Some painting of wallas and lines need to done, but it is mostly done and will be ready for testing the first week of March. Seven pit stalls were added to the Turn One end of the existing pit road, with eight more spaces added at the Turn Four end. Drivers will be entering and exiting the pits at new locations, adding to the excitement at Darlington(SpeedVision)(2-24-2000)

  • New Darlington Sponsor: Darlington Raceway has a somewhat non-traditional partner to be the title sponsor of its March 19 Winston Cup Series race: Mall.com, an Internet mall developer based in Austin, Texas. The race will be called the Mall.com 400.(News and Observer) also see the page at Mall.com(2-11-2000)

  • Darlington Lights Story: Lights up for the races?, Darlington waits - The next step will occur sometime in late summer, when NASCAR will begin putting together its schedule for next season, by David Caraviello(Charleston Post Courier)(2-7-2000)

  • Darlington and the IRL? Not too long ago, Darlington Raceway president Jim Hunter harbored visions of luring an Indy Racing League event to Darlingtom Raceway. But it's not going to happen - not now, and probably not ever. Although the deaths of three spectators during an IRL race in Charlotte last season earned the circuit a permanent black eye in this part of the world, money is the primary reason the proposed Darlington event has stalled out. The cost of running the event and the concern on selling enough tickets are the issues. Hunter was serious enough about the IRL in August of 1998 to attend a race in Las Vegas and meet with series president Tony George. But with the cost of hosting an IRL is approaching $700,000, and weak attendance at the Charlotte IRL races, Hunter chose instead to focus his efforts on selling out both his Winston Cup races. Hunter insists the idea of the IRL at Darlington has not been tabled permanently. But the cost of staging a race will have to drop before open-wheelers run at Darlinton(Charleston Post Courier)(2-7-2000)

  • Darlington Pit Road Update: A seat in Pearson Tower, Darlington Raceway’s Turn Four tower grandstand, will be in bigger demand now that NASCAR’s original superspeedway is putting all of pit road on the front stretch. They are adding seven pit stalls on the front end of pit road going into Turn One, and eight stalls will be added on the Turn Four end. Thre changes will be ready for the BGN and CUP races at Darlington in March 2000. Drivers will face entering and exiting pit road from new locations(Darlington Raceway Site)(12-28-1999)

  • Darlington Pit Road UPDATE: hearing that Darlington Raceway will go to one pit road in 2000, if not for the spring race, by the Southern 500. At present there are 28 front stretch, 15 back stretch pit stalls. That will leave Bristol as the only Cup track with two pit roads(12-12-1999) -- UPDATE: hearing construction is happening right now, so pit road should be ready for the Spring race(12-13-1999)

  • Darlington Tickets: Online ticketing for Darlington is UP. You can purchase tickets for the Sept 5th, 1999 running of the 50th Anniversary Pepsi Southern 500 and the Sept. 4th, 1999 Dura Lube 200 by Bi-Lo. Fans can go to either www.daytonausa.com or www.darlingtonraceway.com to purchase tickets(5-11-1999)

  • Darlington/IRL: Darlington Raceway still wants an Indy Racing League event as long as raceway President Jim Hunter is completely satisfied that all safety concerns can be addressed. Hunter also is in negotiations with Dennis Huth, NASCAR's vice president for administration, about the possibility of running a Craftsman Truck race at Darlington at night. But neither the trucks nor the IRL cars likely would be put on Darlington's schedule until the lights are ready. For lights, Hunter needs approval from International Speedway Corp., which owns the track. Once he got approval, Hunter said, he would consider running either trucks or IRL cars or both. See the rest of the article at: Darlington still seeks IRL race(That'sRacin'/The State)(5-7-1999)

  • New Darlington Seats: Seats for the new Pearson Tower at Darlington are now on sale. Check out the Darlington/DaytonaUSA site for more information(Stock Car Fans Newsletter/Eli Gold)(4-28-1999)

  • Darlington Lights? From an AP story via WRAL - Darlington Raceway president Jim Hunter is all aglow about lighting up NASCAR's oldest superspeedway. If a $2.9 million plan is approved by ISC the TranSouth 400 could be run under the lights by 2000. See complete article at: Darlington President Wants to Light up Raceway (3-10-1999)

  • Darlington 50th story: Darlington Raceway prepares for 50th anniversary at That's Racin'(1-26-1999)

  • Darlington Raceway's ticket office was bombarded Tuesday with last-minute orders for reserved seat tickets to this weekend's Pepsi Southern 500 NASCAR Winston Cup Series race. Darlington Raceway President Jim Hunter said the track still has approximately 1,500 tickets left.(GoRacing)(9-2-1998)

  • The Southern 500 at Darlington will now be known at the Pepsi Southern 500.(NASCAR Online)(7-16-98)

  • Another Darlington story: Hunter: Rumors of Darlington's demise overblown.(SpeedNet/AP)(6-10-98)

  • Jim Hunter, president of Darlington Raceway, is responding to what has become an almost weekly assault on the TranSouth 400's position on the Winston Cup racing schedule. "If NASCAR plans to take a race from Darlington," he said, "you can bet your bippy that I'd know about it." See the rest of the story at That's Racin'.(6-9-98)

  • Looks like my source was correct: "NASCAR's Winston Cup schedule is likely to increase from 33 to 34 races next season with a race being added at Homestead (Fla.) Motorsports Complex, a source within the sports's governing body told The Charlotte Observer on Saturday. Another race is likely to be added to the schedule at a new motorsports facility in Kansas City, Mo. in the year 2000, the source said. To keep the schedule from growing any further, the spring race at Darlington would be dropped from the Winston Cup schedule(in 2000). The race next season at Homestead will likely appear on the schedule where the Atlanta spring race was held this season -- in early March. The Atlanta spring race will be moved one week later."(That's Racin')(6-7-98)

  • I hear is that Darlington will lose it's spring race because the attendance was poor(not sold out) this past spring, that Atlanta will move UP a week in the old Darlington spot and that Homestead goes into the old Atlanta spot. That is all I hear at this point on any 1999 schedule changes at this time. Schedule will probably come out in September sometime as NASCAR seems to understand fans need to make plans early for hotels, etc.(here is one vote to keep Darlington)(6-4-98)

  • Jim Hunter, President of Darlington Raceway, stopped by the infield media center today to let us know something - What is that you ask? Well Mr. Hunter wants us all to know that his spring date isn't going ANYPLACE. The normally reserved Hunter is more than upset that everyone has his spring date moving to Homestead Florida or Kansas City. Hunter is as protective of his track as any daddy is of their flesh and blood. He noted the numerous high-dollar improvements that the track has made over the last several years - the least of which is the 10,000 seat Pearson tower that's been added between turns three and four. Hunter said that the track is looking at adding a lighting system to the oldest track the series visits as well as hopefully adding a NASCAR Craftsman Truck event to their line-up. Hunter also admitted that they've talked to the IRL about visiting "The Track Too Tough To Tame".(www.GoRacing.com)(5-20-98)

  • Despite much talk that Darlington Raceway will lose its spring date on the Winston Cup calendar next year, a source says the venerable track won't lose the event until at least after the 1999 season(Times-Dispatch)(4-1-98)

  • "Word on the street is that Darlington's spring date will be moved to Miami-Dade Homestead Motorsports Complex, perhaps as soon as next year. With the schedule crowded and glamorous new tracks coming on-line nationwide, the early-season Darlington race has widely been seen as expandable, and National Speed Sport News editor Chris Economaki reported recently track officials were expecting to lose the date. Darlington is owned by International Speedway Corporation, the arm of NASCAR which operates Daytona, Talladega, Darlington, and Watkins Glen(and Phoenix). It also owns 45 percent of Homestead, where track founder Ralph Sanchez recently cashed out. The other 45 percent partner in Homestead is Roger Penske's Penske Motorsports Inc."(SpeedNet)(3-22-98)

  • "NASCAR officials are not talking on the record about the 1999 Winston Cup tour schedule, but the latest unofficial word is that Darlington's spring date will be given to the Homestead, Fla., track; that a Homestead Cup race will be scheduled as the season's fourth race; and that Atlanta this season's fourth event will be moved to the Darlington weekend."(JournalNow>)(3-23-98)

  • and..."If Sunday's TranSouth 400 was a test to see if NASCAR President Bill France will continue to support two races a year at Darlington Raceway, the old speedway did not fare well in the exam. Although Darlington is one of the smaller Winston Cup tracks in terms of seating capacity, thousands of seats remained unfilled for Sunday's race, despite clear skies and almost warm temperatures. The raceway did not release an estimated attendance figure."(News and Record Online)(3-23-98)

  • Sunday's race was the 90th Winston Cup event in the track's history, and the worst starting position for any winner is 35th -- by Johnny Mantz in the first Southern 500 in 1950.(3-22-98)

  • Darlington has front stretch and backstretch pits, the first 28 cars get pits on the front stretch(3-20-98)

  • Former Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback and current broadcaster Terry Bradshaw will be the grand marshal for next week's TranSouth 400 at Darlington.(Thats Racin)(3-15-98)

  • iRACE has learned from well-placed informants that Darlington Raceway also has looked at the possibilities of night racing. Darlington isn't anywhere close to making such a drastic decision(7-29-1997)

  • Darlington is also looking into the possibility of installing lights especially if they loose the Spring race to one of the new tracks. They hope to attract a Truck race(6-30-1997)

  • TransSouth Financial has extended their sponsorship through the turn of the century for the Spring Darlington race, I guess there will still be two races at Darlington next year contrary to reports. No way they get rid of the Southern 500(6-5-1997)

  • Darlington will switch the front and back stretch after the spring 1997 race(1996)


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