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“We ran the system while it was still raining to stay ahead of the weather and also ran it twice each day, successfully drying the track only to see more rain after we’d gotten it dry,” he said. “We were able to minimize the drying time for both races so that our fans saw exciting finishes on the scheduled days of the events instead of being forced to alter their plans due to postponements.”

The Air Titan uses compressed air to push water off of the racing surface and onto the apron, where vacuum trucks remove the moisture. Jet dryers follow each Air Titan to dry any excess water that remains on the racing surface. It worked at Talladega, NASCAR’s largest track, despite cold temperatures.

The Air Titan was tested at Daytona in February, and used briefly at Martinsville in April.


STRONG RUN FOR SERVIA: With his IndyCar season potentially coming to an end this month if sponsorship isn’t found, Oriol Servia delivered a strong performance in Brazil to put the spotlight on Dreyer & Reinbold’s plight.

The team owners informed the Spaniard after Long Beach last month they planned to close the team following the Indianapolis 500 without more funding. A formal announcement came last week.

Servia went to Brazil and picked his way through the field, at one point passing Scott Dixon, Dario Franchitti, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Tony Kanaan to move into second place behind Marco Andretti. A caution following his final pit stop dropped him to 11th, but Servia advanced to fifth on two restarts and passed Josef Newgarden in the final corner to finish a season-best fourth.

“We had to go through the field twice and still finished fourth,” Servia said. “I really thought we had a podium. Really, we had a car to win. We have worked so hard to have the car and the team we have. We are contenders. We just announced that we need to find more sponsorship to continue after Indy, but I’m very happy. We are working well, we are doing our jobs right, and something good is going to happen.”


TRY IT AGAIN: NHRA returns to Atlanta Dragway this weekend to complete the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals after rain washed out the event a week ago.

The two-day race weekend resumes Friday with two qualifying sessions, and eliminations are Saturday.

“Having rain postpone us really hurts because we want to race,” said 15-time NHRA champion John Force. “It is what we do. We want to hear the roar of the crowd. I hope all the fans come back Friday for qualifying and then the race on Saturday. We will put on a great show and I am looking to go rounds.”

Top Fuel driver Morgan Lucas, who earned his first career victory at Atlanta Dragway in 2009, said a win Saturday would become a very special present for his mother, Charlotte, who sometimes competes in NHRA’s Super Comp category.

“It’s going to be a unique opportunity for all of us to try and win a Wally as a Mother’s Day gift,” said Lucas. “We’ll come back with the same positive attitude and try to win some rounds.”