We’ve got an exciting weekend ahead in NASCAR, with the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series just outside of Fort Worth at Texas Motor Speedway, and the Camping World Truck Series at quite possibly my favorite track of all time, Rockingham Speedway. Here’s what kind of weather we can all expect for this weekend’s events whether we’re watching on TV or lucky enough to have a ticket to the race.
We kick things off today with practice and qualifying for both series at Texas Motor Speedway, followed by tonight’s NNS O’Reilly Auto Parts 300. Mostly sunny skies will be overhead for Nationwide qualifying, which is set for a 4:05pm CT start, and temperatures will be around 72 degrees. We should reach the afternoon high of 74 during Sprint Cup Series qualifying. Then, for the start of tonight’s Nationwide Series race at 7:30pm, skies will remain mostly clear with temperatures around 70 degrees falling into the low 60s by the drop of the checkered flag. Winds won’t be much of a factor at 5-10 mph out of the south-southeast.
Only minor changes are forecast for Texas on Saturday, with the Sprint Cup Series set to take off just after 6:30pm CT in the NRA 500. We will likely see a little more in the way of cloud cover… call it partly to mostly cloudy… and I wouldn’t be surprised if there were a few sprinkles, but nothing more than that. We’ll have no problems with rain delays in this race. Winds will be a little stronger, out of the southeast at 10-15 mph with gusts as high as 20 mph possible. This may be just strong enough to make things interesting for the drivers coming off of turns 2 and 4, as it will be a cross wind, but it won’t be nearly as strong as it was in this race last year (I was in attendance and struggling to keep my feet while standing on top of an RV in the infield!).
As for temperatures, they’ll start off around 50 degrees for the low in the morning, but warm to a high around 76 during the afternoon. We’ll only drop a degree or two from there for the start of the race, but should cool into the mid 60s by the end.
As the Cup Series packs things up and heads back to the shop, the focus will shift east to a place we NASCAR fans affectionately call “The Rock”. One of the most anticipated NASCAR races of the season, the North Carolina Education Lottery 200 will get started at 2pm ET at the historic Rockingham Speedway. The weather looks just fine for this one as well, though we are cutting it a bit close… there’s a disturbance that will be developing in the Gulf of Mexico and moving into Georgia on Sunday, but rain will not arrive in Rockingham until at least Sunday night, so this will only affect those of you who might be staying at the track Sunday night, after the race is over. For the race itself though, expect partly cloudy skies, and green flag temperatures around 70 warming to 73 by the end of the race. Again, don’t worry about any rain unless you are camping at the track Sunday night- it does look a little wet for Monday morning.
Next week, it’s all about the Cup Series as the other tours will take a break. The Sprint Cup teams will head back to the Plains for Kansas Speedway next Sunday for the STP 400. I always like to give you a long term look ahead to the next race weekend if I can, but this one is going to be a little tricky… While it looks dry for now, albeit a little cooler than average for this time of year, this will be a changing forecast- so be sure to check back with me next week here at BeyondTheFlag.com!
Enjoy the race weekend.