Atlanta Motor Speedway delays track repave after industry review
Turns out, February's Folds of Honor Quiktrip 500 won't be the final race on Atlanta Motor Speedway's popular and historic racing surface.
The track was scheduled to undergo a repave following the race, much to the chagrin of drivers and race fans, but the track announced Tuesday it will delay construction until the track's 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race has been completed.
After an in-depth review and exhaustive consultations with NASCAR, Goodyear, race teams and drivers, we'll be postponing the resurfacing of our racing surface and reevaluate its condition after the 2018 NASCAR weekend. We will continue a meticulous maintenance program in an effort to maintain the surface and prevent further deterioration. Additionally, patch work will be completed where necessary. More info in our profile link
"We're going to repave, it's just a matter of when we're going to do it," Ed Clark, AMS president and general manager, told NASCAR Media. "We know we have to do it sooner rather than later.
"We've talked to fans, to people in the NASCAR garage, spent a good bit of time with Rick Campbell of Goodyear, and we came to the conclusion that with a little bit of work, cutting out some spots and patching them, we could go another year. If they can make it work, we'll go another year and evaluate it after next year's race. We are going to have to cut some patches out and repave them, mostly on the front straightaway."
The 1.54-mile asphalt track is the second-oldest racing surface on the circuit and is a track favored by many NASCAR drivers. The 21-year-old surface is also known for being a bumpy track because of sealed cracks in the asphalt, but the old, rough and weathered surface allows for side-by-side racing in multiple grooves.
New asphalt on a track creates grip in one line of the track, thus fostering singe-lane racing at a much faster speed. While NASCAR's low-downforce package is supposed to increase side-by-side racing and allow for passing on more places on the track, the thought of an Atlanta repave hasn't gone over well with drivers and fans alike since it was first rumored in 2015.