Darlington, SC - (March 24, 2004) They are being called the
"Night Riders," three legendary Darlington Raceway champions scheduled to
run the first exhibition laps under the lights at the historic facility.
It is indeed the beginning of a new era at NASCAR's oldest track. On Tuesday
evening, August 24, the track "Too Tough To Tame" will throw open the gates
and welcome the public for the very first look at Darlington's new facility
The event is free and the public is invited. Gates will open at 6 p.m., and
on-track activity is schedule to begin at approximately 8 p.m. Soft-sided
coolers no larger than 6x6x12 inches are welcome.
Serving fans their first taste of cars on the track under the lights will be
David Pearson, three-time Cup Series champion and Darlington's all-time
winner with 10 Cup victories; Cale Yarborough, the only driver to win three
consecutive Cup Series championships, who is currently tied for all-time
wins in the Mountain Dew Southern 500 (5 wins); and Jeff Gordon, four-time
Cup Series champion and the most successful active driver at Darlington,
tied with Cale Yarborough for all-time Mountain Dew Southern 500 wins and
third on Darlington's all-time win (6 career wins) list behind Pearson (10)
and Dale Earnhardt (9).
The exhibition laps will be followed by question-and-answer sessions with
Pearson, Yarborough and Gordon.
The first race to be completely run under the lights at Darlington will be
the Darlington 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event, kicking off the
Mountain Dew Southern 500 weekend on Friday evening, November 12. Tentative
start time for that event is 8 p.m.
Saturday, November 13 will feature the NASCAR Busch Series drivers in the
South Carolina 200. Brian Vickers won that event in 2003.
On Sunday, November 14, the 55th running of the Mountain Dew Southern 500
will see its closing laps and checkered flag under the lights on Sunday,
November 14, the next-to-last race of the 2004 NEXTEL Cup Series season and
a pivotal event in the chase for the series championship.
For more information on tickets for Darlington Raceway inaugural weekend
under the lights, contact the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at
1.866.459.RACE (7223), or log onto