Innovation at Texas Motor Speedway

This coming weekend's NASCAR Winston Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway will mark the debut of a new hazard warning light system. The new Warning Emergency System (WES) is composed of caution lights imbedded in the track surface at the base of the retaining walls in the speedway's four turns. The new lights are similar to airport runway lights. Each location provides a 15-foot strip that includes a total of 180 LEDs

Innovation at Texas Motor Speedway

Eddie Gossage, general manager of the speedway said: "The WES lights are very directional and are very bright to the driver even in the brightest part of the day. Only fans sitting at a perfect angle will be able to see the lights but to the drivers (we think) they will be very clear and visible."

The WES, which is located at the base of the track's outside retaining wall, operates in conjunction with the previous system, which is mounted at intervals on top of the speedway's walls. "From what we can tell at this point, where they are located they will not be an obstruction to the race cars. That was our primary concern," said NASCAR Winston Cup director John Darby.

Darby approved the use of a new caution light system at the 1.5-mile speedway today (Friday), just in time for practice for this Saturday's O'Reilly 300 Busch Series race and qualifying for Sunday's Samsung/RadioShack 500.

Continuing its innovative streak, the circuit is also employing the use of a radical new track-drying vehicle, called Trak Vac. As the name suggests it operates on a vacuum principle, with 12 pickup points located behind the vehicle's tyres that remove moisture and deposit it in a 600-gallon holding tank. The diesel-powered Trak Vak is designed to operate at 60 mph, allowing rapid drying.

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