Racing fans return to Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway

Fans were allowed back in the grandstands with social distancing
Posted at 6:08 PM, Jul 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-04 19:15:52-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — You might call this a test lap, for all other sport leagues in Music City. The Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway hosted their first race of the season, Saturday night.

"We’re all looking forward to get everything back rolling, back on track. Back full speed," said Nicholas Formosa, one of the drivers.

Drivers and pit crews had to wear masks if they couldn't stay six feet away. Fans were required to have masks and had to pass a temperature check.

"It ain’t gonna bother me," said Ricky Crittenden, a racing fan who was line by the time gates opened.

The fairground grandstand usually fits 15,000 fans, but Metro Public Health only approved 25% occupancy. Once inside, available seats were spaced out.

"Every six seats, there’s two seats marked off to allow a family of six to comfortably sit together but still have some distance from the next family," said Crissie Jackson, with the Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway.

Crittenden said he would accommodate just about any request to get back into the stands. "As long as people’s got their mask on like they're supposed to, it shouldn’t be a problem," he said.

Formosa, who's been racing in Nashville since he was young, told us having fans back really makes a difference. "As a driver, you know when the fans are there. You can hear them cheering. You can feel them out there," he said.

Officials at the speedway say, if this is considered a success, they hope to host more races this summer. "We feel really confident that if everything goes well today with the fans and the racers, that we’ll be able to continue racing," said Jackson.

"I’m glad it’s back," said Crittenden.