NASCAR comes to RIR this weekend: what you need to know

Richmond International Raceway will host four NASCAR races over the coming days. Whether you’re attending or not, here’s what you need to know.

NASCAR revs its engines at Richmond International Raceway over the next few days. Whether you’re heading to the track or not, there are some things you should know that’ll make life a little easier.

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So, what’s going on?

There are four NASCAR races happening over Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at the Richmond International Speedway (RIR). The big one is the Toyota Owners 400 on Saturday night.

What should I know if I’m attending?

If you haven’t already, visit the the RIR website to purchase individual race tickets, or groups deals. Forecasts indicate the weather should be pretty good.

You can bring your own food and beverages (including alcohol) into the grandstands. However, coolers must be soft-sided and can’t be larger than 14” x 14” x 14”. Coolers with telescoping handles and wheels (like these) aren’t permitted. Each fan can bring one cooler and one bag into RIR. You should also think about bringing comfortable shoes, sunglasses, sun screen, and earplugs with you.

Henrico County police are expected to up their presence at RIR, as well as increase surveillance measures in response to the Boston Marathon bombings.

On-street parking on major routes to RIR will be prohibited each day, but parking at RIR is free. However, RIR will get increasingly busy throughout the day on Saturday, so arrive early to avoid lines.

Parking will be available for $6 on Saturday at the Richmond Coliseum parking deck with free shuttle service to and from RIR beginning at 1:00 PM.

Parking will also be available for $10 per car ($25 per recreational vehicle) at The Showplace in Mechanicsville beginning at 11:00 AM. Free shuttle service to RIR begins at 12:00 PM.

What if I’m not attending?

That’s cool. You can watch the Toyota Owners 400 on Saturday at 7:00 PM on FOX.

If you plan to be out and about over the next few days, bear in mind motorists should expect heavy traffic and delays around RIR, especially on Saturday before (8:00 AM – 7:30 PM) and after (10:15 PM – 2:30 AM) the big race.

The following traffic patterns will be in effect on Saturday during peak hours:

  • Carolina Avenue between Laburnum and Azalea avenues will be one-way inbound before the race and one-way outbound after the race.
  • Richmond-Henrico Turnpike/Meadowbridge Road from the Henrico/Hanover county line to Azalea Avenue will be one-way southbound from about 9:00 AM until the race starts.
  • After the race, Laburnum Avenue from Carolina Avenue to Mechanicsville Turnpike will be one-way eastbound.
  • After the race, beginning at about 10:00 PM, Richmond-Henrico Turnpike/Meadowbridge Road north of Azalea Avenue will be one-way northbound to Atlee Road in Hanover County.
  • After the race, three lanes of Azalea Avenue from Richmond-Henrico Turnpike/Meadowbridge Road to Henrico High School will be routed westbound; one lane will be routed eastbound.

photo by Miss Chatter

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Nathan Cushing

Nathan Cushing is a writer, journalist, and RVANews Editor.

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