Fernley 95A Motorsports
Complex is hosting its second test and tune session Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2
p.m. Drivers can take hot laps on the 3/8-mile clay oval for $45 and spectators
can come and watch for $5 apiece. Two weeks ago, about 50 cars showed up, and I
expect there will be a similar turnout Saturday. I plan to be there and hope to
get some news about when the racing season will start.
NASCAR will re-open the 2020
season Sunday at Darlington with a 400-mile race for the NASCAR Cup cars. There
will be no practice or qualifying, so there will be a competition caution at
lap 30. It will differ from the normal competition caution to allow teams more
time to make adjustments. The caution will freeze field, so cars will line up
in the same order for the restart. The top 20 cars will pit first, the bottom
20 next. The “lucky dog” rule will apply, but there will be no wave-arounds.
Cars will be allowed to pit a second time during the competition caution, but
any car that fails to beat the pace car off of pit road on either stop will be
scored a lap down and restart at the tail end of the field.
Sunday’s starting lineup will
be determined by owner points. The top 12 charter teams in owner points will
take the first 12 positions based on a random draw. Positions 13-24 will be a
random draw among charter teams in those positions. The same rules apply for
positions 25-36, and the final four spots will go to non-charter teams in order
of owner points. This race replaces the June 21 Chicagoland race on the
schedule, while the May 20 Cup race will replace the April 19 Richmond race.
Sonoma will lose its June 14 date, replaced by the May 27 Charlotte race. The
idea is to keep the teams as close to their home bases as possible, minimizing
travel and the number of personnel at the track for the one-day events. Expect
more schedule changes depending on the situation as things gradually open from
A full field of 40 cars is
expected Sunday, including a returning Ryan Newman. It will be Newman’s first
time in the car since his frightening crash on the last lap of the Daytona 500.
Fans will have lots of racing to watch over the next two weeks. In addition to Sunday’s
Darlington Cup race, the Xfinity series will race at the track on Tuesday with
a second Cup race on Wednesday. Next week the Cup cars will race at Charlotte
on Sunday and Wednesday with an Xfinity race on Monday and the Gander Outdoor
Truck series on Tuesday. All races will air or FOX or FOX Sports 1. Check your
TV listings for start times.
In other series, schedules are beginning to gel as well. The NTT IndyCar series plans to open the season at Texas Motor Speedway on June 6. It will be a one-day event with practice, qualifying, and the race all on Saturday. Their next race will be at Road America on June 21. Formula 1, with different countries involved, has a tougher time rescheduling its season. There are plans to begin in July with back-to-back non-spectator races at the Red Bull Ring in Austria, but things are still in flux. It’s possible that some tracks not on the original 2020 schedule may hold a race, and a remote possibility of no F1 racing this year, according to F1 CEO Chase Carey. Stay tuned.