NOTE: Race Rescheduled for Sunday, May 6, 2007 @ 3 PM




Southside Turns Back The Clock
Hamlin, Markham will drive in a race to benefit Cystic Fibrosis group
BY WALT AMACKER
TIMES-DISPATCH STAFF WRITER
Published Wednesday, May 2, 2007

WEDNESDAY - MAY 2, 2007
SOUTHSIDE SPEEDWAY
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Two former Richmond-area drivers will go bumper to bumper at Southside Speedway tomorrow night to benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.


Curtis Markham (left) and Denny Hamlin during a
practice session May 1 at Southside Speedway
photo by Robert Dennis

NASCAR's 2006 rookie of the year and former Chesterfield resident Denny Hamlin will take to the track in a 175-lap Late Model Sportsman race against the current field of LMS drivers.

Also in the pack will be Richmond native Curtis Markham, who is Hamlin's spotter on the Nextel Cup and Busch circuits. Both were at the Midlothian track yesterday to test their rides. Hamlin is driving a Chevy Monte Carlo owned by Ron Roberts, and Markham will be in a Monte Carlo owned by Greg Holt.

Both drivers have been associated with the CFF for several years and have been involved in numerous benefit events. Markham won the Late Model Stock championship at Southside in 1984 and 1986 and last drove there in 1991.

"This track is great," an enthusiastic Markham said during practice yesterday. "There are a lot of serious racing fans here, and it will be great to be running here again. It's a tough track."

Markham started racing at Southside in 1977.

Asked if he would cut Hamlin any slack, Markham replied good-naturedly: "Absolutely not . . . because I know he won't cut me any."

"A lot of people have welcomed me back with open arms," Hamlin said. "And we're glad to be here, close to home, to help benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation."

Hamlin has been involved with the CFF since his early racing days because of a cousin who suffers from the disease.

"The foundation has done so much to help in finding a cure for this affliction," Hamlin said. "Whatever we can do, we do. It's a good cause."

There will be a number of items raffled off to benefit the foundation, including autographed helmets, T-shirts, caps and other items donated by Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Hamlin, Tony Stewart and J.J. Yeley.

Tickets will be on sale at the Southside box office from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. today. Tomorrow, the ticket windows open at 3 p.m. and spectator gates will open at 5. Racing begins at 7:30. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for military and seniors and $5 for children 7-12.


Contact staff writer Walt Amacker at wamacker@timesdispatch.com or (804) 649-6554.