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NASCAR: The Bristol Motor Speedway dirt heat race qualifying pushed to Sunday

The Bristol Motor Speedway was pitted well before the rain came. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
The Bristol Motor Speedway was pitted well before the rain came. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Ted Fleming
EXPERT
Modified 28 Mar 2021
News

Bristol Motor Speedway was supposed to be a busy place on Saturday, with dirt qualifying and a race scheduled. But it soon became apparent that the track was not ready for prime time, after one just one lap of the first heat race. The NASCAR Camping World Truck and Cup Series got their practice sessions in without much incident, but light rain was something no one wanted to see.

By 5:30 p.m. Eastern, the rain at Bristol Motor Speedway became heavy, as predicted. There was no way NASCAR could get the track ready for Saturday’s events, so it called off Truck and Cup qualifying, as well as the Pinty's Truck Race on Dirt.

See you at Bristol Motor Speedway on Sunday. Well maybe.

NASCAR has rescheduled everything at Bristol for Sunday, but the forecast is not in its favor. Weather.com predicts thunderstorms likely in the morning. Then there's a chance of scattered thunderstorms in the afternoon. A few storms might even be severe. The possibility of rain is 100%.

Ryan Newman checks out the condition of the Bristol Motor Speedway dirt track. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Ryan Newman checks out the condition of the Bristol Motor Speedway dirt track. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

The Camping World Truck Series came to Bristol Motor Speedway to race on dirt for the first time since 2019, when it ran at Eldora Speedway. However, the Cup Series has not seen dirt since 1970.

Also read: Carson Hocevar to pay tribute to the late Bryan Clauson in Trucks dirt race at Bristol

The first heat race took the green flag, but after one lap, it was red-flagged. The top layer of the Bristol Motor Speedway track was red clay, and trucks kicked up so much mud, it covered the front ends, blocking air to the engine, but more importantly, drivers could not see past their steering wheels.

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The clay fell off from under the trucks in huge chunks. Crew members desperately tried to clean the eleven entrants in Heat 1 while modifieds raced around the track to try and dry it enough to get everything restarted. It looked like it could happen; however, Mother Nature had other ideas.

Also read: Kyle Larson to start from the back in Bristol dirt race

Published 28 Mar 2021, 10:54 IST
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