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Weather Forecast for Phoenix NASCAR Weekend

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What’s Happening?

The NASCAR circuit completes an abbreviated “West Coast Swing” this weekend at Phoenix Raceway, the sight of the Championship race this coming November. Due to its arid, desert climate, Phoenix Raceway weather has generally treated NASCAR well. However, the record is not perfect, so, will this weekend produce more weather issues?

  • NASCAR has been racing at Phoenix in some capacity as early as the 1970s. However, the Cup Series has been coming here since 1988. Phoenix had traditionally had one race in the fall at or near the end of the season, but a spring date was added in 2005.
  • Two Cup Series races at Phoenix have been shortened by rain. Despite the dry air, NASCAR has brought clouds to Phoenix a couple of times.
  • Fans are always interested in the spring Phoenix weekend because of how it could preview the Championship race. With a near-perfect weather record, fans can count on the race happening on schedule as well.

Weather Forecast via National Weather Service

Friday, March 8: ARCA Menards Series General Tire 150 (8:00 PM ET/6:00 PM Local)

  • Forecast: Mostly Clear
  • Temperature: High 70°F, Dropping into 60s°F after sunset
  • Rain: 1-2%
  • Wind: SW to S 3-6 MPH

Saturday, March 9: Xfinity Series Call811.com Every Dig. Every Time. 200 (2:30 PM ET/12:30 PM Local)

  • Forecast: Sunny
  • Temperature: High 75°F
  • Rain: 0%
  • Wind: SE 6-8 MPH

Sunday, March 10: Cup Series Shriner’s Children’s 500 (2:30 PM ET/12:30 PM Local)

  • Forecast: Sunny
  • Temperature: High 80°F
  • Rain: 0%
  • Wind: E to SE 7-8 MPH

Phoenix Raceway Weather History

The first rain-shortened race at Phoenix Raceway came in 1998. A long rain delay late in the event caused NASCAR to call the race with 55 laps remaining. Phoenix did not have lights at the time, so, waiting until the night to finish the race was not an option. Rusty Wallace took home the win in dominant fashion, leading 196 of 257 completed laps.

Perhaps the most infamous Phoenix weather kerfuffle came in 2015. The elimination race in the round of 8 was delayed from the afternoon to night due to a long rainstorm. Thanks to some good pit strategy and perfect timing, Dale Earnhardt Jr. was in the lead when the rains returned in the second half of the race. Earnhardt Jr. took home his final career win, and the 2015 Championship 4 was set.

Hopefully, it will stay dry this weekend at Phoenix. However, Phoenix has thrown some curveballs in the past.

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