Shortly before the gates opened Former Sprint Car driver and Track Promoter Brad Doty and World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series announcer Johnny Gibson looked up at the sky, looked down at the radar app on Gibson’s phone and discussed the possibility of getting the Brad Doty Classic at Attica (OH) Raceway Park in.
A forecast for showers at six pm was down to 20% and clear after that, but the grey cloud cluster coming over the track was telling a different story.
Around this time, track officials ushered fans out of the driver hauler area to get them to the ticket office. When the first window opened the first rain drops fell. In the next 20 minutes two cells passed over the track. The first one was over in three minutes; the second lasted longer as fans shared umbrellas and ran for cover waiting for sales to begin again.
Compared to what the track saw on Monday, however, this was nothing. Heavy storms in the area turned the track into Attica Lake. Locals circled asking if they could take a dip.
This was the scene the day before the Brad Doty Classic! Again, we can't thank our track crew enough for all of their hard work! pic.twitter.com/RE7TCkwXdg— Attica Raceway Park (@atticaracewyprk) July 12, 2017
The track crew worked all night to get the track ready for race day, and in the end festivities were pushed back 45 only minutes for some extra drying of the track.
Even with the delay and threat of weather, a packed house of fans showed up to watch the 58-car field battle for cash and bragging rights at the iconic track—in a race that honors one of their most iconic stars.
Six sets of hot laps, two qualifying flights, a D- and C-Main, the Last Chance Showdown, and the Feature, all were completed due to a tireless effort of behind-the-scene members of the Outlaws and Attica camp.
The drivers did their job too, putting on a hell of a show for the fans. Hard racing was seen throughout the heats. Brad Sweet worked his way up from the D-Main. Finally, in the feature where for 35 laps it looked like no one had anything to offer against Tim Shaffer, David Gravel shot himself to the lead, going from fourth to first in the final four laps with one final slide job as the flagman was reaching for white flag. These were the only two laps he led.
No one looked more relieved at the end of the night than Attica Operations Director Rex LeJeune, who celebrated by passing out high-fives to old friends and fans in the media center.
FloRacing travels today to Eldora Speedway for the Kings Royal weekend. For more information about how our trip is going follow along at GoingwiththeFlo42@wordpress.com.