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Langley Speedway replaces Hamlin Showdown with Grassroots 200

Langley Speedway

Langley Speedway is going to race on Thursday, April 11, after all.

The Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown was scheduled for that same night but was unexpectedly canceled last month with the charity foundation citing promotional costs.

Track owner Bill Mullis has decided to green-light a new event that spotlights the regional stars of Late Model Stock racing — even if it doesn’t include NASCAR national touring stars. The race will be called the Visit Hampton Virginia Grassroots 200 and will include an increased purse and a free online stream via FansChoice.TV.

The race is the night before track action begins at Richmond Raceway for NASCAR premier division.

“We wanted to find a way to showcase short track grassroots racing and what better time to do that then when the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series is right up the road at Richmond Raceway,” said track owner Bill Mullis.

The exact details and purse structure has yet to be revealed but Mullis has said that, “the purse will be significantly larger than a normal weekly Late Model race.”

The event will be the first of three major Late Model Stock Car races at Langley Speedway in 2019. The other events will be the CARS Tour 125 on June 8th and the 11th annual Hampton Heat 200 on July 20th.

The Denny Hamlin Foundation canceled the Showdown on February 26 after returning from a one-year hiatus last season. The race was expected to once again feature the likes of Hamlin, Kyle Busch and Timothy Peters against the top names in weekly late Model racing.

The 2018 race was contested in front of a crowd of roughly 7,000 and won by Hamlin himself.

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Matt Weaver is the owner and founder of Short Track Scene. Weaver grew up in the sport, having raced himself before becoming a reporter in college at the University of South Alabama. He is also the associate motorsports editor of Autoweek Magazine and its website, which allows him to cover the highest levels of the sport.

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