SWANSBORO, N.C. (WNCT) After a long wait, opening day is just around the corner at the Bobby Watson’s Carteret County Speedway. Drivers, fans and staff are all making final preparations as they eagerly await the big weekend.
“It’s almost like you’ve got butterflies from being excited. You’re very anxious and making sure everything is just right,” said Bob Lowery, owner of the Carteret County Speedway.
Bob Lowery is doing just that– making sure everything is in place before fans enter the speedway for a season filled with racing.
“My team of folks that are working out here with us. They are doing their best to make sure that when our fans come, they see just a first class venue, a first class racetrack,” added Lowery.
It’s a venue on the Crystal Coast that is a staple in the Eastern North Carolina community.
“It’s a good hometown track with local people. It’s just a good crowd of people to come out with and watch racing,” said Danny Midgetd, Street Stock driver.
Because of the coronavirus, this year’s season starts with specific guidelines.
“We had to do a lot of precautions and all of that stuff, which we don’t mind a bit, such as all of the precautionary measures for the COVID-19 virus,” said Lowery. “We still have social distancing in place and we have sanitation stations all over the place.”
All week, drivers hit the track tuning up their cars and taking their final laps before the first green flag drops on the 2021 season.
“Oh, these guys are tough,” explained Midgetd. “They are great racers.”
And it’s something that owner Bob Lowery believes is much overdue.
“We are excited for that first and foremost. Not only for us but for the whole county too,” explained Lowery. “And for the businesses able to start doing that and folks get back to some sense of normalcy.”
Per Gov. Roy Cooper’s guidelines, only 50% of total capacity is allowed at outdoor sports venues. That will be enforced this weekend at the speedway.
Several different divisions will compete, the first starting shortly after 3 p.m. Saturday.
- Jr. Mini Cup (15 laps)
- Street Stock (35 laps)
- Champ Kart (20 laps)
- Bomber (25 laps)
- Mini Cup (15 laps)
- Mini Stock (35 laps)
- U-Car (30 laps)
- Late Model (100 laps)
*Stay tuned Friday for a special feature on one of the drivers, exclusively on 9OYS*