Traffic on Kentucky 35 approaching the
speedway was at a crawl Saturday afternoon.
That was relatively fast compared to what
motorists experienced on I-71.
Mike Perleberg-Eagle 99.3
(Sparta, Ky.) - A traffic backup unlike any ever seen by the tri-state may be what people remember most about the inaugural Spring Cup race at the Kentucky Speedway.
About 120,000 people witnessed the race, but thousands more did not even make it there because of the standstill traffic going to and from the track.
Even one of the Sprint Cup drivers, Denny Hamlin, posted on his twitter account about being struck in traffic. He nearly missed the mandatory drivers meeting before the race.
“I think everyone should lay on their horns at the same time. Ready Set Go!!!!,” Hamlin tweeted.
Track officials issued an apology Sunday:
"Kentucky Speedway regrets the traffic conditions surrounding the ‘Quaker State 400.’ We’re committed to working with NASCAR, state and local officials and traffic experts to assure that this never happens again. The details of these improvements will be announced over time as they are formulated.
“We also recognize the traffic problems resulted in some fans not being able to attend the ‘Quaker State 400.’ We are gathering information on this and will announce a policy for these affected fans within seven days.
“Our ‘Quaker State 400’ ticket holders are invited to share their experiences with us through email@example.com. We thank all our fans for giving the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series such a great welcome to our venue.”
Reports said backups on Interstate 71 stretched for 18 miles in each direction heading towards Sparta.
A Lawrenceburg resident reported parking at the Love's Travel Stop off of I-71 in nearby Sanders, Kentucky and walking to the track from there. They arrived at the track after the race had started.
Once fans arrived at the track, they found a hodge-podge of parking. Many lots had no organized lines for parking. In one lot, vehicles were observed to be lined up in rows of three, leaving the middle row boxed in and unable to move.
Leaving the race was as much a wait as getting there.
“Can't wait to get home. I feel really bad for all the team guys who gotta sit for hours waiting to get outta there,” tweeted Hamlin post-race.
You can report your Kentucky Speedway Quaker State 400 experience on our Facebook page or by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.