RICHMOND, Va. - Monday, the NBA's Washington Wizards and NHL's Washington Capitals announced they will welcome fans back to Washington, DC's Capital One Arena later this month.
The regions of central and coastal Virginia have not seen a professional sporting event conducted with fans in attendance since before the COVID-19 pandemic early in 2020. However, that changes this weekend when Richmond Raceway hosts both a Toyota Owners 400 NASCAR Cup Series and Toyota Owners 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at the historic venue. An estimated 10,000 fans are expected to be in attendance - which is less than the 30 percent capacity permitted via Virginia restrictions.
During a 1-on-1 interview with News 3 Sports Director Adam Winkler, Richmond Raceway president Dennis Bickmeier says he knows being the first pro sporting event with fans in our region means Richmond Raceway is setting an example for future events - like Norfolk Tides minor league baseball.
"There's good collaboration among the venue operators around the Commonwealth," Bickmeier revealed. "We all learn from one another and we will through this as well. The minor league baseball guys - their season is early May, so they're right around the corner. What we learn here, we'll be able to share with those guys and they'll be able to build from there. And as they go through the summer, we'll be learning things because we're back up in September again. So we'll learn a lot from those guys as well."
Tickets are available for purchase for Saturday's Toyota Owners 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. However, due to capacity restrictions, fans are unable to purchase tickets to Sunday's Toyota Owners 400 NASCAR Cup Series race.