Late Model series will race under the lights at Martinsville next year

Martinsville Speedway
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The $5 million LED light system Martinsville Speedway will install was labeled an “insurance policy” for its two Sprint Cup races in case they run long.

But a NASCAR Late Model Stock Car series will get the full night race treatment at the 0.526-mile oval next season.

The track, which announced the light installation last week, revealed during the ValleyStar Credit Union 300 driver meeting on Sunday that the 2017 edition of the race would be run at night. A date for the race has not been announced.

“I’ve always said this was the greatest Saturday night race on a Sunday afternoon,” track president Clay Campbell said in the meeting. “Now it truly will be the greatest Saturday night race.”

“The drivers, teams, ValleyStar and, most importantly, the fans of this race deserve being the first to run under our new permanent LED lights.”

The project is being paid for by International Speedway Corp., which owns the track. It was spurred in part by last years’ Sprint Cup Chase race. Jeff Gordon won the event as night descended on the area.

At the light announcement, Campbell said had there been an additional delay “we wouldn’t have finished that race.”

The 2017 Sprint Cup races at Martinsville will be held on at 2 p.m. ET on April 3 and 1 p.m. ET on Oct. 30.