Earlier Start Time To Benefit Race Fans

New Start Time

With the recent release by NASCAR of this season’s start times, Darlington Raceway’s new 7 p.m. start for the Sprint Cup Series Southern 500 on Saturday, May 12, should be a win for all race fans attending this year’s traditional Mother’s Day weekend event.

The move to push its starting time 30 minutes earlier from the 2011 race is a small but celebrated change for track President Chris Browning and the raceway staff.

“We worked really hard with NASCAR and FOX [who is broadcasting the race] to get our start time moved earlier to 7 p.m. to accommodate our race fans who will be traveling home after the event,” Browning said. “We recognize that Mother’s Day falls the day after the Southern 500 so it was important to get an earlier start time so our fans have more time to get home quickly and at a reasonable hour. We feel that getting the time pushed back just 30 minutes will make a big difference and allow fans more time with their moms on Mother’s Day.”

With many ticketholders traveling in their personal vehicles locally and regionally for raceday, fans view night racing at Darlington Raceway a must-see on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule.

With the rich tradition and history that is the Southern 500, Mother’s Day weekend is a staple on the calendar that no one wants to miss.

However, getting the 60,000-plus fans that attend races at Darlington home in time for Mother’s Day is a task that the track staff wants to ensure will happen each year. Many fans have openly suggested an earlier start time through Darlington’s fan surveys and the track is listening.

“We’ve heard many fans tell us they want an earlier start time because of Mother’s Day, so this change only made sense because it’s what they wanted. This is a win-win because we will still race under the lights and get everyone home at a more reasonable time,” Browning said.

The start time for the NASCAR Nationwide Series VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200 race will be at 7:15 p.m. on Friday, May 11. It will be carried live on ESPN2.

Tickets for events at Darlington can be purchased by calling the Darlington Raceway ticket office at 866-459-RACE or online at http://www.darlingtonraceway.com/tickets/.

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 11-12, 2012, NASCAR’s biggest stars return to battle the track Too Tough To Tame in the Sprint Cup Series Southern 500® and Nationwide Series VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200.

You can keep up with all of the latest news from Darlington Raceway at DarlingtonRaceway.com, on Facebook at Facebook.com/DarlingtonRaceway and on Twitter at Twitter.com/TooToughToTame.

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