|An impressive crowd at Lancaster's Driver Registration Party|
credit: Lancaster National SPeedway & Dragway
Lancaster National Speedway & Dragway hosted its 2016 Driver Registration Party at the Variety Club Banquet Hall on Sunday, and was greeted with record turn outs in several categories as teams are eager to get back on track.
Drivers and team owners began lining up 15 minutes before the doors were schedule to open at 2 p.m.
"I am truly amazed at the number of drivers, teams and crew members that showed up for registration,” said track president Tim Packman. “It got to the point where there was more jockeying for position for pit pads than racing for ones on the track for a checkered flag."
More than 70 drag racers registered for the Friday Night IHRA Drag Racing program, and racers also participated in a Christmas Tree tournament to see who had the best reaction time.
The Saturday night stock car program saw nearly 50 competitors sign up for the 2016 campaign and around 60 pit pads have been reserved.
"This all goes back to what we started last year, in the building of excitement and positive vibe the track is experiencing now as we go towards the future," said Packman. "I personally credit the teams for what they've been doing in the off-season in communicating in a professional manner with the track. If registration is any indication of what the season is going to be like, I am very optimistic for Lancaster National Speedway and Dragway in 2016."
The division creating the most excitement for the Saturday night shows is the Sunoco Sportsman, as 17 drivers have already signed up for the 2016 points program. Lancaster will be the only track in Erie County running the open-wheeled division on a weekly basis in 2016. The Street Stock and 4-Cylinder divisions also had strong turn outs with new drivers signing up in both classes.
Packman also addressed the crowd to give an update on facility improvements for the upcoming season, including news that Turns 3 and 4 of the stock car oval will likely be repaved. Packman and Lancaster's ownership group are also researching resurfacing the drag strip as well as additional repairs and upgrades to the speedway grounds.
Lancaster National Speedway & Dragway's 2016 season begins the weekend of April 16-17. The IHRA Drag Racing program hits the strip on Saturday, April 16 with test and tune and a Box/No-Box Shootout. The stock car program opens on Sunday, April 17 with the "Queen City Clash 75" for the Race of Champions Asphalt Modified Tour. Get more information at www.lancasternationalspeedway.com.
Quotes in this piece provided by Lancaster National Speedway & Dragway.