Oppressive heat to put a strain on NASCAR drivers, fans in New Hampshire on Sunday
By Renee Duff, AccuWeather meteorologist
July 21, 2019, 2:33:58 PM EDT
The heat wave sizzling the Northeast this weekend will push AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperatures to dangerous levels during Sunday's NASCAR race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
"With high temperatures in the lower 90s F on Sunday, it will be very hot for those sitting in the grandstands," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Alan Reppert said.
High humidity levels and sunshine will make it feel even more stifling for crew members, drivers and fans.
The AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperature is forecast to be near 100 degrees Fahrenheit at the start of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 race on Sunday afternoon.
The temperature inside the cars and on the track will be even hotter.
"It’s usually about 30 to 40 degrees [Fahrenheit] hotter inside the car than the outside ambient temperature," David Ragan, a driver in NASCAR’s premier division for 11 years, told AccuWeather.
The risk of heat-related illnesses is high in such conditions if proper precautions are not taken.
"Drink plenty of water and non-alcoholic beverages, and try and find some shade before and after the race to stay cool," Reppert said.
Wearing hats, sunglasses, sunscreen and light-colored, loose-fitting clothing are also advised.
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Metal grandstands in direct sunlight could become hot enough to burn exposed skin.
Cooling tents have been set up at New Hampshire Motor Speedway for fans to find relief amid the sweltering heat.
We have just the place for you to cool down race fans! Cooling tents located behind the Main Grand Stands. pic.twitter.com/tqV4X5xGVj— New Hampshire Motor Speedway (@NHMS) July 19, 2019
"There is a chance for a thunderstorm or two on Sunday afternoon that could bring some cooling, but it would also risk delaying the race," Reppert said.
The storms will be widely separated in nature, so there is a chance that the racetrack is missed altogether.
However, if a thunderstorm does threaten, fans are urged to leave the grandstands and head inside if possible.
A metal, hard-top vehicle is also a suitable option to protect yourself from dangerous lightning strikes.
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