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How NASCAR tracks are helping during COVID-19 pandemic

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As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the country, NASCAR tracks are helping local communities. Here’s a look at how tracks have helped:

Atlanta Motor Speedway

The track in Hampton, Georgia, has an American Red Cross blood drive scheduled May 4.

The drive will be held from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. ET in Atlanta Motor Speedway’s Tara Ballroom, located within the AMS Condo Building at 1500 Tara Place.

To ensure all participants have the opportunity to donate upon arrival, donations for the blood drive will be done by appointment only.

Red Cross employees have implemented additional precautions to ensure blood drives and donation centers are safe for donors and staff and reduce potential exposure to COVID-19.

To make an appointment use the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, enter sponsor code “atlantaspeedway” and choose the donation time that works best for you, or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Each donor will receive a discount coupon to the AMS Gift Shop and photos with the AMS pace car. A photo ID will also be needed upon arrival.

The track also teamed up with Hampton Elementary and the Atlanta Community Food Bank to help local families in need with a mobile market on April 3, April 17 and April 24.

Here are numbers on how many people have received food via the markets.

4/3:
Households: 502
Individuals: 2,213

4/17:
Households: 839
Individuals: 3,128
Children: 1,256
20 pallets of food

4/24:
Households: 1,280
Individuals: 5,164
Children: 1,914
40 pallets of food

The track is scheduled to hold more mobile markets on May 1, May 8, May 15, and May 22.

Bristol Motor Speedway

Is conducting a blood drive with Marsh Regional Blood Center April 27-28 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.  ET at the Marsh Regional mobile unit inside the track’s North Entrance.

To give blood, donors must be at least 17 years old, weigh 110 pounds or more and be in good health. People with a cold, sore throat, fever, flu or fever blisters or who are taking antibiotics may not donate. Donors should eat a balanced meal before giving blood.

Charlotte Motor Speedway

– Has teamed up with a program called Esther’s Heart for Transformation Ministry to collect non-perishable food items and books to give out to children in need.

– Partnered with Coca-Cola and Red Classic Transitthe and the Carolina Panthers to provide 1,600 area first responders with thousands of meals and drinks at Charlotte Motor Speedway on April 27. Thousands more meals were provided to local food banks and charities for distribution.

– Will conducting two blood drives:

On May 6, from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. ET in the infield Paddock Club at the track.

To schedule an appointment, visit www.redcrossblood.org and enter the key word “Lapsforlife”.

All donors are required to wear a face covering or mask while at the drive, in alignment with new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention public guidance.

On May 8, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET.

To schedule an appointment, visit www.oneblood.org/speedway.

Daytona International Speedway

AdventHealth conducted drive-up COVID-19 tests at the track a few weeks ago.

Dover International Speedway

– Partnered with the Food Bank of Delaware and the Delaware Department of Transportation to host a food distribution event for families in need last week, giving food to about 2,500 households.

-Bayhealth Medical Center, Central Delaware’s largest health care system, has utilized the Fan Care Center as a drive-thru testing location off and on since mid-March.

– Dover has also served as a distribution site for personal protective equipment during the pandemic. The equipment included gloves, helmets, clothing and goggles.

Martinsville Speedway

Martinsville Speedway in Virginia is being used as a COVID-19 test site.

The site is open on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 12-4 p.m. ET.

Individuals to be tested must be a resident of Martinsville City, Henry County, or Patrick County.

They will not be admitted to the testing site unless it has received proper documentation from a physician.

As of last week, 70 tests had been administered.

Click here for more.

Las Vegas Motor Speedway

– Conducted four blood drives with the American Red Cross through March and April that had just over 150 people donate.

– Fed all employees of the University Medical Center on April 22 with 300 pizzas.

– Donated tents, gurneys and masks to several local hospitals

– Has organized car clubs to do drive-by birthday celebrations for kids in the community.

New Hampshire Motor Speedway

– New Hampshire Motor Speedway offered a home residence on the NHMS property to allow first responders to quarantine away from their homes if needed.

– If the local fuel supply chain is interrupted due to the pandemic, the town of Loudon, N.H. can obtain gasoline from the speedway’s Sunoco gas pumps for keeping essential equipment and vehicles in use.

– New Hampshire Motor Speedway donated 800 rain ponchos for public safety workers to use as hospital gowns to help alleviate the shortage of proper personal protective equipment.

– If the need arises, the State of New Hampshire Emergency Operations Center has secured space at New Hampshire Motor Speedway for an overflow care facility and mobile testing site.

– The New Hampshire Food Bank will host a mobile food pantry at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on May 9 in response to local need and as a means to distribute nutritious food such as fresh produce, meats, dairy and canned or boxed items.

Talladega Superspeedway

The track in Alabama hosted a by-appointment blood drive earlier this month and served as a COVID-19 test site.

Texas Motor Speedway

The track in North Texas will host a by-appointment-only blood drive May 6 at its Lone Star Condominium Clubhouse.

The blood drive is scheduled for 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. ET.

Donors will be required to have their temperatures taken by Red Cross staff or volunteer prior to being admitted into the blood drive space. Donors will also be required to wear a protective mask throughout their appointment time and hand sanitizer will be available at check-in, health history and refreshment areas. Approved social distancing measures will be in place throughout the process.

Homestead-Miami Speedway

As a result of a $40,000 donation made because of its eNASCAR Pro Invitational iRacing Series race last month, the track was able to distribute food and supplies to 1,000 families in its community through Farm Share.

 

Speedway Motorsports announces layoffs, furloughs across company

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Speedway Motorsports, LLC announced Wednesday that it has laid off 180 employees across all of its facilities and subsidiaries and furloughed another 100 employees due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.

Those facilities include Atlanta Motor Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway, Kentucky Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Sonoma Raceway and Texas Motor Speedway.

Speedway Motorsports also has subsidiaries that include SMI Properties (souvenir merchandising services), U.S. Legend Cars International and the syndicated Performance Racing Network, which broadcasts races and shows.

Here is a statement issued by the company:

“The extraordinary circumstances presented by this pandemic and the subsequent shutdown of the economy have had a significant impact on our business.

“Since the beginning of the shutdown four weeks ago, we have kept our entire team on full pay while our properties remained dormant. In that time, it has become clear that we must be a more nimble, more efficient organization.

“As such, we have made the difficult decision to restructure our business and eliminate many duplicate positions. Unfortunately, part of this restructuring includes eliminating approximately 180 positions across all departments at our speedways and subsidiaries.

“Approximately 100 additional employees have been furloughed. These decisions were not easy. Our company is providing a severance package to each person affected by job eliminations.

“Speedway Motorsports remains committed to providing the very best entertainment experience to all who come through our gates when America’s fight against this pandemic is behind us. This reorganization positions us to move forward at that time and well into the future. In the meantime, our staff will continue to maintain our facilities in preparation for the event days ahead and support our community with outreach efforts during this time of need.”

The company did not specify how many employees are affected at each track or subsidiary, but the job layoffs (not including furloughs) account for 15 percent of all Speedway Motorsports’ overall staff.

The layoffs and furloughs come more than a week after NASCAR implemented layoffs. NASCAR previously had across-the-board pay cuts.

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How NASCAR tracks are helping during COVID-19 pandemic

COVID-19
Martinsville Speedway
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As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the country, NASCAR tracks are stepping up to help out local communities in their time of need:

Here’s a look at tracks that are helping out:

Atlanta Motor Speedway

The track in Hampton, Georgia, has announced an American Red Cross blood drive on May 4.

The drive will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. ET in Atlanta Motor Speedway’s Tara Ballroom, located within the AMS Condo Building at 1500 Tara Place.

To ensure all participants have the opportunity to donate upon arrival, donations for the blood drive will be done by appointment only.

Red Cross employees have implemented additional precautions to ensure blood drives and donation centers are safe for donors and staff and reduce potential exposure to COVID-19.

To make an appointment use the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Each donor will receive a discount coupon to the AMS Gift Shop and photos with the AMS pace car. To prepare to give blood, the Red Cross recommends donors eat iron-rich meals and drink plenty of water. A photo ID will also be needed upon arrival.

To donate please visit RedCrossBlood.org and enter sponsor code “atlantaspeedway” and choose the donation time that works best for you.

Food Market

The track teamed up with Hampton Elementary and the Atlanta Community Food Bank to help local families in need with a mobile market on April 17 and April 24.

 

Bristol Motor Speedway

Is conducting a blood drive with March Regional Blood Center April 27 and 28 from 10 a.m. and run through 4 p.m.  ET at the Marsh Regional mobile unit inside the North Entrance of the track.

To give blood, donors must be at least 17 years old, weigh 110 pounds or more and be in good health. People with a cold, sore throat, fever, flu or fever blisters or who are taking antibiotics may not donate. Donors should eat a balanced meal before giving blood.

Charlotte Motor Speedway

Has teamed up with a program called Esther’s Heart for Transformation Ministry to collect non-perishable food items and books to give out to children in need. Donations

Daytona International Speedway

AdventHealth conducted drive-up COVID-19 tests at the track a few weeks ago.

Dover International Speedway

– Partnered with the Food Bank of Delaware and the Delaware Department of Transportation to host a food distribution event for families in need last week, giving food to about 2,5000 households.

-Bayhealth Medical Center, central Delaware’s largest health care system, has utilized the Fan Care Center as a drive-thru testing location off and on since mid-March.

– Dover has also served as a distribution site for personal protective equipment during the pandemic. The equipment included gloves, helmets, clothing and goggles.

Martinsville Speedway

Martinsville Speedway in Virginia is being used as a COVID-19 test site.

The site is open on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 12-4 p.m. ET.

Individuals to be tested must be a resident of Martinsville City, Henry County, or Patrick County.

They will not be admitted to the testing site unless it has received proper documentation from a physician.

As of last week, 70 tests had been administered.

Click here for more.

Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Conducted four blood drives through March and April.

The four Red Cross blood drives held at Las Vegas Motor Speedway were resounding successes, with 160 total donations.

The March 27 blood drive at LVMS exceeded its goal of 50 donations and 46 were first-time donors to the Red Cross. The April 2, April 7 and April 11 sessions were at capacity as well.

New Hampshire Motor Speedway

Has donated nearly 800 ponchos to city of Loudon to use as PPE devices.

Talladega Superspeedway

The track in Alabama hosted a by-appointment blood drive earlier this month and served as a COVID-19 test site.

Texas Motor Speedway

The track in North Texas will host a by-appointment-only blood drive May 6 at its Lone Star Condominium Clubhouse.

The blood drive is scheduled for 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. ET.

Donors will be required to have their temperatures taken by Red Cross staff or volunteer prior to being admitted into the blood drive space. Donors will also be required to wear a protective mask throughout their appointment time and hand sanitizer will be available at check-in, health history and refreshment areas. Approved social distancing measures will be in place throughout the process.

Homestead-Miami Speedway

As a result of a $40,000 donation made because of its eNASCAR Pro Invitational iRacing Series race last month, the track was able to distribute food and supplies to 1,000 families in its community through Farm Share.

 

How NASCAR tracks are helping during COVID-19 pandemic

COVID-19
Martinsville Speedway
Leave a comment

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to take its toll, NASCAR tracks are stepping up to help out local communities in their time of need:

Here’s a look at tracks that are helping out:

Atlanta Motor Speedway

The track in Hampton, Georgia, has announced an American Red Cross blood drive on May 4.

The drive will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. ET in Atlanta Motor Speedway’s Tara Ballroom, located within the AMS Condo Building at 1500 Tara Place.

To ensure all participants have the opportunity to donate upon arrival, donations for the blood drive will be done by appointment only.

Red Cross employees have implemented additional precautions to ensure blood drives and donation centers are safe for donors and staff and reduce potential exposure to COVID-19.

To make an appointment use the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Each donor will receive a discount coupon to the AMS Gift Shop and photos with the AMS pace car. To prepare to give blood, the Red Cross recommends donors eat iron-rich meals and drink plenty of water. A photo ID will also be needed upon arrival.

To donate please visit RedCrossBlood.org and enter sponsor code “atlantaspeedway” and choose the donation time that works best for you.

Charlotte Motor Speedway

Is collecting non-perishable food in a white bus at the main entrance for Esther’s Heart, a local charity feeding children in need.

Daytona International Speedway

AdventHealth began ofering 500 or more drive-up COVID-19 tests at Daytona International Speedway starting at 9 a.m.  ET last Friday.

The tests will be available to anyone who meets the criteria for testing, as set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A doctor’s order in not required for testing.

Those who are symptomatic and wish to be tested should visit AdventHealthCoronaVirusTesting.com prior to arrival. They will be asked to enter their contact and insurance information and will be assigned a time to be tested.

There will be no out-of-pocket costs, regardless of insurance status. AdventHealth will cover the cost of those who are uninsured. The test consists of coughing and spitting into a cup.

The drive-up testing location is accessed through Daytona International Speedway’s NASCAR Drive entrance at the intersection with ONE DAYTONA. The site will remain open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET and Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. ET, or as long as testing supplies are available.

Results can be expected in approximately 2-3 days. Those tested will receive a text message with instructions on how to retrieve the results. Those who test positive will receive a call from a nurse to review the results.

Dover International Speedway

– Partnered with the Food Bank of Delaware and the Delaware Department of Transportation to host a food distribution event for families in need on March 20. Track employees volunteered alongside Food Bank staff to provide staples such as milk, vegetables and cereal to more than 2,400 households.

– Dover International Speedway’s Fan Care Center is serving as a remote headquarters for Bayhealth Medical Center’s coronavirus (COVID-19) testing.

Bayhealth, central Delaware’s largest health care system, has utilized the Fan Care Center as a drive-thru testing location off and on since mid-March.

– Dover has also served as a distribution site for personal protective equipment during the pandemic. The equipment included gloves, helmets, clothing and goggles.

Martinsville Speedway

Martinsville Speedway in Virginia began hosting a COVID-19 test site last week.

The site will be open on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 12-4 p.m. ET.

Individuals to be tested must be a resident of Martinsville City, Henry County, or Patrick County.

They will not be admitted to the testing site unless it has received proper documentation from a physician.

Click here for more.

Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Conducted four blood drives through March and April.

The four Red Cross blood drives held at Las Vegas Motor Speedway were resounding successes, with 160 total donations.

The March 27 blood drive at LVMS exceeded its goal of 50 donations and 46 were first-time donors to the Red Cross. The April 2, April 7 and April 11 sessions were at capacity as well.

New Hampshire Motor Speedway

Has donated nearly 800 ponchos to city of Loudon to use as PPE devices.

Talladega Superspeedway

The track in Alabama hosted a by-appointment blood drive last Wednesday.

It was also a COVID-19 test site on Friday, according to The Anniston Star, with about 60 people getting tested.

Texas Motor Speedway

The track in North Texas hosted a blood drive two weeks ago that collected 32 pints of blood from more than 30 donors, an amount that can help up to 96 patients.

Homestead-Miami Speedway

As a result of a $40,000 donation made because of its eNASCAR Pro Invitational iRacing Series race a few weeks ago, the track was able to distribute food and supplies to 1,000 families in its community through Farm Share.

 

Todd Gordon explains reason he called Ryan Blaney to pit road

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Crew chief Todd Gordon says he has a scar from Las Vegas Motor Speedway for a pit call he made in the 2017 race there. Sunday’s decision to pit Ryan Blaney from the lead cost Blaney the win and left Gordon with a deeper scar.

Instead of possibly winning, Blaney finished 11th.

Gordon spoke Monday on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio’s “The Morning Drive” about his pit call late in Sunday’s race.

Blaney led when the caution came out for Ross Chastain’s spin. It set up a two-lap shootout for the win. When pit road was opened, Blaney and Alex Bowman, running second, both peeled off the track, but Joey Logano, running third stayed out.

Logano was one of seven drivers who did not pit. He assumed the lead for the restart and went on to win the race

Here’s what Gordon told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio about his decision to pit:

“You knew you were going to come back to a two-lap run. We had scanned down pit road and it sounded like most of the top 10 were coming for tires. I wish I had that one back. I wish we had left him out there and let him defend. … I thought if we could (restart on the) second row on four tires or third row on four tires, we’d be alright, but to (restart on the) sixth row on four tires and just that in debacle back there and four-wide, didn’t look like maybe (Erik Jones‘) spotter let him know he had two outside and got caught up in (the last-lap accident).”

Gordon said a similar situation at the end of the first stage in the 2017 race at Las Vegas lingered in his mind as he decided what to do Sunday on the final pit stop.

“I think in the situation, I was waffling,” Gordon told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “When it first came out, I thought we would stay. The more we talked about it, the more we scanned people, I let the information we gathered from that point forward skew me to pit and looking at it, and you think about this race track and where we were and you’ve got less than a second of falloff (in the tires from the beginning of a run to the end), so we don’t have a ton of power. So being able to hook up the rear tires on a restart isn’t as detrimental as it used to be.

“I’ve got a scar that comes back to me from the 2017 spring race. There was a caution, we had 40 laps on tires and there was a caution with like eight (laps) to go in a stage. We were leading and I stayed out because I felt like we’d have guys stay out to score stage points. We were the only car to stay out. We ended up 14th I think in five laps there.

“That scar still stuck, but you have to identify that’s when we had more power, we had less downforce. Getting good restarts was tough because you could hook the power up to the rear tires. We don’t really have that now.

“With this intermediate package, we’ve got with less power and more downforce and more drag. In hindsight, probably I wish I had it to do over again and went with the original (decision). … Kudos to Joey and (crew chief) Paul (Wolfe) to adapting the call. I think they were talking about coming in, but when Joey saw he could get the front row, I think he made a diversion to it and ultimately won the race that way. Had (I) to do it all over again, probably leave Ryan in a position to see whether he could go and secure and defend the lead we had.”

While there seemed to be some communication issues between Logano and crew chief Paul Wolfe if to pit during that late caution, Logano said it wasn’t the case.

“We talked about this scenario, whether it’s at the end of a stage or end of the race,” Logano said. “If it comes down to it, can we get clean air, or at what point are we comfortable staying out?

“So Paul came over the radio and said, stick to the plan. I said, okay, I’ll stick to the plan. That was it. You know, ultimately it was a good call, obviously, and got us in position to have a good restart. I had a good push with Ricky (Stenhouse Jr.) behind me and had a good block on (William Byron) once I got the push.

“At that point, once you get that clean air, you’re in good shape. If I didn’t have a good restart and got swallowed up by the field, I’d have had the backup lights on pretty quick. But the call and then the execution to go together is what we needed to do.”

Said Wolfe about Logano not pitting at the end:

“It’s really about the clean air. If you can get clean air, it’s worth so much. The tires obviously were wearing some. Obviously that’s why we saw a lot of guys pit, obviously, from the lead. It seemed like … the left side (tire) wear was more accelerated than what we’ve seen in the past, and I think that was making guys favor wanting tires.

“But really still the falloff, if you look at the start of our run to the end, it wasn’t extreme, and in practice we were out there on older tires. When they have a chance to cool down, seemed to re‑fire and have decent speed.

“It’s kind of what we had talked about. If you can get to the front row and get that clean air, then it’s worth the gamble.

“Obviously we had a lot of cars behind us. At that point I felt pretty good as long as he executed the restart, the guys on tires weren’t going to catch you in two laps. Just not enough time.”