It already was going to be historic. Pocono Raceway in Long Pond was set to host the first Cup Series doubleheader in NASCAR’s modern history (since 1972) during the final weekend in June.
Then, the coronavirus pandemic hit in March, leaving many to wonder if there would be racing anywhere at all. But NASCAR shut down for 10 weeks, then resumed in May with a plan and safety protocols to protect the drivers, crews and workers.
That meant temperature checks and wearing masks. Restricting pit and garage access to emphasize social distancing.
Perhaps biggest of all: No spectators.
Mother Nature then got into the act, as she usually does at Pocono. Rain on Saturday postponed the NASCAR Truck Series race, adding to an already busy Sunday schedule that included the NASCAR Xfinity Series race and second Cup Series race.
It would be the first time in NASCAR history that all three national series were held at the same track on the same day.
Kevin Harvick and Denny Hamlin dominated the Cup Series races, finishing 1-2 — Harvick-Hamlin on Saturday, Hamlin-Harvick on Sunday. Brandon Jones won the Trucks race, while Chase Briscoe took the checkered flag in the Xfinity Series race.
There were 270 laps and 675 miles in two days of racing. Historic, indeed.
During more than 30 years at The Times-Tribune, Scott has covered everything from high schools to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. His current beats include motor sports, local colleges, high school cross country and high school baseball. He also is a copy editor and page designer. His articles have won awards from the Associated Press Sports Editors, American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association, Eastern Motorsports Press Association, the Society of Professional Journalists Keystone Pro Chapter and the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association Keystone Press. He also has been honored by the Atlantic Collegiate Baseball League and the Minor League Football Alliance. In 2016, he was presented the Media Service Award by the Northeastern Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame. A Long Island, New York, native, Scott graduated from the University of Scranton in 1986 with a bachelor’s degree in communications. He lives in Peckville with his wife, Andrea, and daughters, Bridget and Emily. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9100, x5109; or @swalshTT on Twitter