Persistent rain has forced NASCAR officials to again postpone the 3M Performance 400 at Michigan International Speedway. The race is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. ET Tuesday.
The race will be the first in NASCAR's modern era to be run on a Tuesday.
The noon ET Monday scheduled start was been pushed back and track officials met at 11:30 a.m. ET to discuss options and were hopeful that a window of opportunity opened to get the race under way.
At 12:15 p.m. ET, MIS said in a release that "NASCAR and speedway officials are working diligently to dry the track to get the 3M Performance 400 under way."
As of 11:45 a.m. ET, the rain had diminished to light showers. However, shortly before 2:30 p.m. ET a heavy drizzle began and then a thick mist began falling, at which time track workers parked the driers.
About an hour later workers again took to the track again to try to dry the track despite light rain still falling. NASCAR official ultimately pulled the plug on trying to get the race under way about 3:30 p.m. ET Monday.
Michigan became the fourth rain-delayed event of the Nextel Cup season, joining Dover, Richmond and Darlington. The first event this season at Pocono was shortened by rain.
NASCAR spokesman Ramsey Poston said the series would work to get the race in this week -- perhaps going even as late as Wednesday if necessary -- to avoid returning to Michigan later in the year. If more rain were to force the event to be pushed back until later in the season, it would alter the entire dynamic of the Chase.
The Chase participants, Poston said, are decided by rule after the season's 26th event. If weather precludes the Michigan race from being run this week, it would be rescheduled for the weekend after Thanksgiving. That would mean the Chase drivers would be decided not Sept. 8 at Richmond, but Sept. 16 at New Hampshire. And the championship would be decided not at Homestead on Nov. 18, but the next weekend back in Michigan.
The last Cup race to be postponed on consecutive days was the 1997 Winston 500 at Talladega Superspeedway. Originally scheduled for Sunday, April 27, rain forced postponement until Monday. Then more showers forced NASCAR officials to reschedule the race for the following week, in order to allow teams to free up their haulers for a cross-country trip to Sonoma. The race was finally run on Saturday, May 10 -- Mother's Day weekend.
Story Courtesy: Nascar.com
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