A dryer Daytona in the plans

DAYTONA BEACH, FLA. (AP) - Daytona is going dry.

No, not in the stands, where fans attending the Daytona 500 can still drink and have fun watching the race.

On the track.

NASCAR has a new track drying system that will debut during Speedweeks at Daytona International Speedway. The device should reduce track drying time, perhaps up to 80 percent. NASCAR is calling the system the “Air Titan.” The machine pushes water off the track and onto an apron where vacuum trucks will remove the remainder of the moisture. Jet dryers will follow the Air Titan, drying all excess water left on the racing surface.

Last year’s Daytona 500 was plagued by rain and the race was moved to a Monday for the first time.

The track-drying trucks will not be on the track with other cars. Juan Pablo Montoya sparked a giant fireball in last year’s race when he crashed into a jet dryer loaded with fuel.

Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR’s senior vice president of racing operations, said this was only phase one of the project.

“It was something that was thought about, but I think obviously sped up after having to move that race to Monday for the first time ever,” he said. “When we really looked at it, there’s been no new technology since 1976. It was kind of like, `What are we doing?’”

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Comments
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like
  • **FILE** In this April 23, 2013 photo, Cuba's former pitcher Conrado Marrero, the world's oldest living former major league baseball player, holds up a baseball with his signature at his home, two days before is 102nd birthday, as he holds an unlit cigar in his mouth in Havana, Cuba. (AP Photo/Franklin Reyes)

    Oldest ex-MLB player dies in Cuba, 2 days shy of 103rd birthday

  • Washington Wizards guard John Wall, left, and Bradley Beal celebrate the Wizards' 101-99 win as Chicago Bulls guard Kirk Hinrich walks off the court after missing two free throws during the overtime period of Game 2 in an opening-round NBA basketball playoff series Tuesday, April 22, 2014, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

    HARRIS: D.C. not yet spellbound by Wizards, but they’re no illusion

  • Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III watches Baylor and Central Florida play during the first half of the Fiesta Bowl NCAA college football game, Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2014, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

    Robert Griffin III to drive pace car before Richmond NASCAR race

  • Washington Wizards forward Nene, left, guards Chicago Bulls forward Carlos Boozer during the first half in Game 1 of an opening-round NBA basketball playoff series in Chicago, Sunday, April 20, 2014. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

    Early returns show projections of physical Wizards-Bulls series were correct

  • Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson (10) celebrates after catching a 25 yard touchdown in the first quarter as the Washington Redskins play the Philadelphia Eagles in Monday Night NFL football at FedExField, Landover, Md., Monday, September 9, 2013. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

    Dan Snyder: DeSean Jackson ‘really a good guy’

  • Celebrities In The News
  • ** FILE ** In this March 19, 2013, file photo, Justin Bieber performs during a concert at Bercy Arena in Paris. (AP Photo/Francois Mori, File)

    Justin Bieber apologizes for Japan war shrine trip

  • FILE - This Jan. 8, 2014 file photo shows singer Chris Brown, right, arriving at the District of Columbia Superior Court in Washington. After a brief postponement, singer Chris Brown's trial on an assault charge is scheduled to begin in Washington. Brown's trial had been set for Monday but was delayed while lawyers tried to work out whether his bodyguard will testify. It's unclear whether the trial will start Wednesday, as Brown's lawyers seem to want, or if further legal maneuvering will delay it.  (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File)

    Chris Brown assault trial delayed again

  • Justin Bieber seeks delay in Fla. DUI trial