Speedway Opening Day: April 9
After a winter to forget, New Hampshire Motor Speedway is ready to make this a summer to remember. Celebrating its 25th anniversary as the largest sports and entertainment facility in New England, the Magic Mile will officially open its gates for the first time in 2015 on Thursday, April 9.
From the bicycles to hybrids and motorcycles to stock cars, New Hampshire Motor Speedway will drop the green flag on its silver anniversary at 6 o'clock Thursday night and won't wave the checkered flag on the racing season until the snow flies again.
"We are extremely excited to get this season underway," said David McGrath, the speedway's vice president of corporate sales. "This is our 25th anniversary and means each and every event on our track is adding another moment to our history books. From our club series to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, we are proud to be the hub of all things racing."
It's been an arduous but rewarding transition from wintery wonderland to hot laps, as the NHMS maintenance and operations teams have been hard at work prepping the track and facility. More than 1,500 man hours, including five snow machines were dedicated to clearing the more than four feet of snow from the 1.058-mile oval and throughout the infield. The operations crew has done its due diligence, checking on everything from winter damage to de-winterizing buildings and areas throughout the near 1,200-acre property.
"Mother Nature tests us throughout the winter months and that doesn't change as the warm weather of spring moves in," said Tom Blanchette, the speedway's director of operations. "Our team works extremely hard to make sure every nook and cranny of this facility is up to par before we get the season going. With the winter we had, it's been a challenge, but we're ready to go racing and officially get this 25th anniversary season going."
With nearly 30 unique on-track events scheduled throughout the month, April is certainly shaping up to be one of the busiest of the season. The NHCC, a cycling club based out of central New Hampshire, will get the tires rolling with the first Thursday Night Training Series of its season. Over the weekend, the Porsche Club of America (PCA) North Country and the Rusty Wallace Driving Experience will be on the track, while NH Karting Association will be in the Reserved RV area and Club Loose will hold a drifting session in S3. Other car and motorcycle clubs/series running throughout the month include BMW Boston, Motorsports Lab, open testing for motorcycles, Penguin Road Racing School.
The U.S. Legend Cars Moat Mountain Road Course Series will hold testing and race sessions on Saturday, April 25-26 (the USLC Sign Works Oval Series and Pro Wraps of New England Bandolero Series will both run for the first time on May 16). The Loudon Road Racing Series (motorcycles) will also have its first event during the April 25-26 weekend.
The Formula Hybrid Competition returns from April 27-30. Featuring high-performance hybrid and electric race cars, Dartmouth College's 9th annual Formula Hybrid Competition features cars built by teams of undergraduate and graduate engineering students, who compete in aspects of design, acceleration, handling and endurance of their vehicle, and abide by a long list of rules.
This year's racing season will once against be highlighted by two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekends, including the New Hampshire 301 on July 19 and the SYLVANIA 300 on Sept. 27. To purchase tickets, which now include special pricing for kids under the age of 12, call the track's ticket hotline at (603) 783-4931 or by visiting www.nhms.com.