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VIRginia International Raceway’s Upcoming Spectator Events Promise Influx of Visitors to Region

 VIRginia International Raceway’s Upcoming Spectator Events Promise Influx of Visitors to Region

Alton, Va. – July 26, 2023 – VIRginia International Raceway (VIR) is preparing for three of its biggest events of the 2023 spectator season, the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, Aug. 25-27, the Blue Ridge Rock Festival, Sept. 7-10, and the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) Runoffs, Sept. 22-Oct. 1. The events will bring hundreds of thousands of motorsports and music fans to the area in August and September and in turn, promises to be a busy time for businesses in Danville, Halifax and Pittsylvania County.


Race weekend begins bright and early the morning of Friday, Aug. 25 with practice, qualifying, car corrals, team chats, tech talks and more. The featured race of the weekend, the Michelin GT Challenge Race, will take place on Sunday, Aug. 27 at 2 p.m. on VIR’s historic full course. The course is 3.27 miles with 17 turns and 130 feet of elevation changes, with drivers topping speeds of 190 miles per hour. The two hours and 45-minute race includes the “climbing esses,” a section of the course considered by many race drivers as one of the most intimidating in North America.


In addition to the Michelin GT Challenge Race, the weekend will feature races from several support series including the Mazda MX-5 Cup, Lamborghini Super Trofeo, VP Challenge and the Virginia is for Racing Lovers Grand Prix, part of the Michelin Pilot Challenge series.


Shortly after race weekend, VIR will host the Blue Ridge Rock Festival, Sept. 7-10. The music festival is one of the largest rock and metal festivals in the country and more than 150 music acts are scheduled to perform. Rock music fans from all over are set to flock to VIR for the four-day, fan-driven festival. This is the festival’s second year at VIR after a wildly successful and popular inaugural event in 2022.


Following the festival, things only calm down briefly before the SCCA Runoffs come to town Sept. 22-Oct. 1. The event, which is the largest in amateur racing, will bring more than 600 of the best teams from across the country to VIR for a full 10 days.  


All three events will bring both new and familiar faces to VIR and in turn, the surrounding areas, and an opportunity for our residents to show why we love the region so much.


“When our visitors are not enjoying the action at VIR they will want to spill out into our communities and take advantage of our unique shopping, dining and attractions,” said Lisa Meriwether, tourism manager for the City of Danville.  “Sharing this information with our area businesses will ensure they are well staffed, stocked, and ready to provide great customer service to our guests during these high-profile events.”


“We are fortunate to have one of the most sought-after racetracks right in our backyard,” said LaTonya Hamilton, director of Halifax County Tourism. “The Michelin GT Challenge Race, the Blue Ridge Rock Festival and the SCCA Runoffs are expected to be three of VIR’s highest attended events of 2023 and that gives local business owners an incredible opportunity for increased exposure and foot traffic. Being knowledgeable about the events can aid in preparation and ensuring these visitors return again and again.”


To view a complete schedule and more information on each event, and to purchase tickets, visit: For information about other things do while visiting the region for VIR events, check out the SoSi Visitor Guide.


About VIRginia International Raceway

VIRginia International Raceway is one of America’s premier road courses, offering professional and amateur racing for modern and vintage classes while providing contemporary resort amenities. A prominent test facility for the automotive industry, VIR has the distinction of being named one of the top six courses in North America by Car and Driver Magazine, and southern roots and hospitality make it one of the friendliest. Conveniently located at the Virginia/North Carolina border, VIR is centrally located in the heart of the Mid-Atlantic with 15 million people within 150 miles. For more information, visit, Facebook or Twitter.