Sneak Preview of the Lights at Daytona

10 June 1998


Daytona Beach, FL

Musco Lighting proclaims the speedway "the largest lighting project of
a sporting arena ever."  Daytona International Speedway officials call
it "a sell-out." Either way it looks like the drivers and racefans
win. The first-ever "race under the lights" will be held July 4th at
the home of NASCAR. The five million dollar project had it's first
true test last night.  When all was said and done the drivers and fans
in attendance gave the lighting project "a big thumbs up."

Rusty Wallace in the #2 Miller Lite Ford was the most enthusiastic of
the fifteen drivers in attendance. Commenting just after the historic
session ended, Wallace said "you can see practically everything on the
track. These guys [Musco] have done a great job. Nowhere on the track
did you get reflections or blind spots." Mark Martin commented that
"the transition from the [lighted] track to the garage area was just
like going from day to night. That was the hardest part of the whole
night."

The other item that all of the driver's commented about was the cool
temperatures. In year's past the race would start at 11:00 AM to try
and avoid most of the summer-time oppressive Florida heat and
humidity. Racing at night will remove most of that problem.  This will
also be a big plus for the racefans. In year's past the medical center
was kept busy treating fans with sun exposure.

The move to a night race is a huge financial plus for the
speedway. The July 4th race has traditionally sold around 100,000
tickets. This race is sold out. The traffic nightmares that come with
200,000 people descending upon this monument to stockcar racing is the
one area that no one has fixed or addressed.

The testing for this historic moment continues tonight and Wednesday
night with another practice session for later in the month. The
grandstands are open to the public.

David Treffer -- The Auto Channel
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