MARTINSVILLE, Va. (WDBJ7) It was a bit of a disappointment for racing fans at Martinsville Speedway Friday afternoon after the decision was made to cancel qualifying and truck practice.
But from fans to race analysts, they aren't letting a few clouds ruin their weekend.
NASCAR officially kicked off the race weekend at Martinsville when the engines fired up Friday.
"Extremely excited about being back here short track racing," race fan Kurt Phillips said.
Fans and teams alike shared that excitement for most of the day, that is until the clouds started to roll in. The track posted this warning for fans to clear the stands before the storm hit.
Shortly after the rain fell NASCAR cancelled Monster Energy Cup Series qualifying. However, some fans questioned that call once the sun came out.
"They could've done it in the sunlight because it probably doesn't take too much time to dry the track," race fan Roberto Amaral said.
Other fans are pumped for the first short track of the season to test the new stages format. Stages 1 and 2 will run 130 laps each before a mandatory caution flag. Then the final stage will be 240 laps to the checkered flag.
"Excited about the stage races to see how it works on the short tracks should be interesting," Phillips said.
NASCAR analyst are also curious what strategies teams will use on Sunday.
"Biggest thing that's been changed is the way crew chiefs are approaching strategy trying to win one of those stages or trying to finish as high as possible because those points absolutely add up," racing analyst Larry McReynolds said.
Now with the rain cleared out for the weekend, fans say there just one thing left to do.
Saturday is another full day of racing at Martinsville with practice, qualifying, and the truck race going green at 3 p.m. Gates open at 9 a.m.