Practice Protocols: Stafford Speedway Shares Guidance For Saturday Open Practice

After a nearly two month delay to opening the 2020 season, Stafford Motor Speedway will welcome competitors back to the historic half-mile on Saturday for an open practice session.

The track is tentatively scheduled to host its first night of competition on June 26.

Stafford Speedway released the following protocol sheet Monday for their open practice session.

Safety Protocols

Face Masks | Wash Hands | Keep 6 Ft. Apart 

We have worked with Connecticut government officials to ensure Stafford Speedway will be ready to provide a safe experience for all in attendance. Safety protocols and procedures will be in effect that include: 

  • In order to enter the facility, participants will be required to complete a one-time COVID-19 waiver form.  Waiver form may be printed and signed prior to arriving.  Access the form online here.
  • Participants will be required to bring and wear face coverings unless doing so would be contrary to his or her health due to medical conditions.
    • Masks required at all times except when in your team’s pit stall
    • Masks recommended but not required when seated in the grandstand area.
  • Strict adherence to the CDC-recommended 6’ social distancing will be mandated 
  • Trailers required to park every other pit stall, adhere to marked pit stall areas
    • Teams with multiple cars are not required to space cars across multiple pit stalls
  • Multiple hand sanitizing stations will be placed throughout the facility, attendees are encouraged to wash hands frequently
  • Our Staff will be cleaning and disinfecting the restrooms throughout the event
  • Entry and exits to the grandstands, along with routes to concession stands and restrooms will adhere to social distancing guidelines
  • There will be food service onsite, as well as physical barriers between guests and food service operations
  • If you are sick please stay home.
  • If you are in a high risk category, please consider staying home.

Requirements to Practice

  • Teams must complete the following steps before cars will be allowed onto the racetrack:
  1. Cars must have a number registered with Stafford Speedway.
  2. Current fuel cell registration form must be completed.
  3. Current team profile sheet completed
    1. All forms available at
  4. New drivers must take a headshot in their firesuit. Photo location: garage area at the end of the pit concessions.  
  5. Drivers must possess a valid NASCAR License. If possible, please renew your NASCAR license online at Paper applications will be available on Saturday.
  6. Submit a transponder number to the Handicapper’s Booth.
  • Practice is open to any division that will be racing at Stafford Speedway in 2020 (registration required)
  • Paddock Area admission for the practice session is $30.00.  
  • If you have purchased a 2020 Season Paddock Pass, admission is included to the practice session.
  • General Admission grandstands will not be open for this practice session.


  1. ‘ Masks recommend but not required when seated in grandstand areas’ That phrase pretty much sealed my fate. Looks like I most definitely won’t be attending any events, it’s just not worth the risk. They took a page right out of Trump’s playbook having everyone sign a release form. One would think masks would be mandatory in the stands. Good luck to everyone who chooses to attend.

  2. Anarchy 2020 says

    Uh oh Stafford is now somehow affiliated with Trump. Better boycott.

  3. carl block says

    Nothing to worry about rob ,grandstands won’t be open for this practice session .

  4. A couple things. First the announcement regarding safely protocols shown here and on the SMS web site seems to be addressing the practice. That being the case people sitting in the stands at the practice is of minor importance since there would be so few. Second they have said in the track rental agreement and again here that if you are in the vulnerable demographic it may be in your best interest not to attend races for the time being.
    At some point they will release the safety protocols for fans attending races I should think. They could very well say masks are optional at that time. While that would be disappointing the reality is you can’t dictate behaviors to people unwilling to go along. Maybe fans here would be more safety conscious We seem to get it quite well in every public place we visit to do business and shop. On the other hand race fans are an independent lot so Barry may end up in his his camper drinking beer and listening to the track broadcast on the radio. All things considered, being at the race, hearing the engines and enjoying the atmosphere certainly beats watching numbers flash on Race Monitor’s live timing for we geezers not willing to chance it.

  5. But, will that be the protocol when the stands are open

  6. In Massachusetts it’s the law that you wear a mask in public, which is rarely enforced. If you go with a mask optional approach chances are people won’t wear them.

  7. Anarchy 2020 I don’t think your to far from right, I think trump is grand Marshall for opening night

  8. The average Covid19 deaths for the last 8 days since the previous week ticked up just one to 18. Infections declined from 193 to 165 per day. As the state continues to open those numbers should rise but otherwise it’s astounding the improvement so far. Especially considering testing has doubled and tripled over the last couple months.
    Two of this forums best fans, one a season ticket holder and the other a regional traveler have made it clear that they would likely not feel comfortable in a situation with low mask usage.. Health professionals have endorsed universal mask usage in public situations. . In Ct at stores and places of work and even many of the demonstrations we’ve seen it’s clear the public has accepted universal mask usage in more populated settings.
    On May 24 Shawn Courchesne wrote:
    “We all know that in most communities where there are short tracks there are people in the community that implore local official constantly to put more and more walls of regulation up for track operators. They want less days of racing, less traffic, less noise, shows to end earlier, camping to be restricted. The list goes on and on. And track operators have to live the life of appeasing local officials to let them continue to do business without allowing the chatter of track enemies in the community to influence their decisions. ”
    To be clear the theme of the opinion piece was the defiance of track management which clearly is not the case with Stafford. Nonetheless if a crowd shows up, the track makes masks optional and there are visuals of vast numbers of people with bare faces it’s going to make the news and it won’t be appreciated. Furthermore if infections ensue that can be traced to a Stafford racing event especially when the state has made such good progress what the track did or didn’t do will make no difference. The story line will be Connecticut’s one operating circle track was attended by a bunch of irresponsible rebels with no regard for the progress we made so far.
    Distance can’t be achieved in these densely populated situations no matter how much you say it. Personal and facility sanitizing is good but it’s not even the main threat to transmission. Respiratory droplets are and there is one easy way to reduce that threat……..masks.
    We’ve seen crowds at Ace and Mahoning actively flaunting the use of face coverings when given the option. Masks should be made mandatory in the stands. No exceptions. Even then you won’t get universal cooperation but you may get just enough to make a difference.
    We aren’t North Carolina, Pennsylvania or New Hampshire. We are in the corridor that got crushed with infections and gambling with our progress with wishy washy window dressing is a loser in the long run. Don’t screw around Stafford and especially do not trust we fans to do the right thing on our own. Be firm with the rules starting with the first event. It may ruffle some feathers but may actually increase the odds of extending the season as long as possible by setting the right tone at the outset.

  9. Well, Doug, it pains me to say this but, your right. That post hit the nail on the head.
    It’s time for the race teams and fans at Stafford Motor Speedway to show the nation the proper way to conduct an event furring a pandemic . This means wearing masks, Social distancing to the best of everyone’s ability, and practicing good hygiene. The track should enforce these rules and toss out those who don’t comply. At the same time it’s up to them to provide safe facilities, which I think they will. Let’s make a statement, and ensure a safe environment for everyone. It can be done, if everyone does their part. Like you said, any sign of Covid would most likely result in a shutdown, and allot of bad press. Let’s not give the naysayers the chance to say ” I told you so”. It’s not asking allot for everyone to conform, and the reward will be some great racing on a weekly basis.

  10. Ryan North says

    I’m almost the opposite of whatever rob says. The fact that they aren’t requiring facemask in the stands secured my fate that I WILL absolutely be attending this event. Time to open the racing world again there is no reason to make fans and teams suffer any longer. I have been waiting for this day all year! If you don’t feel comfortable don’t go its as simple as that. Don’t harp at the Speedway for going out of there way to make this happen. Thank you Stafford

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