Daytona to ban smoking in grandstands

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Those wanting to smoke in the grandstands during Speedweeks at Daytona are being asked not to do it, and by July’s race it will be completely banned.

Daytona International Speedway President Joie Cheatwood said smoking will be allowed only in designated areas during the Coke Zero 400.

Cheatwood said he made the decision after he spoke with a fan during last year’s Coke Zero 400.

“And they kinda said, ‘You know, really, this really doesn’t make the experience for new fans or for me when somebody’s sitting next to me smoking,'” Cheatwood told WOFL-TV.

Cheatwood said he has heard both good and bad things about the changes.

“We’ve had some customers who are very excited by the change and felt like it was overdue. We had some that weren’t happy with it, but they also understood,” Cheatwood said.

The ban is voluntary now because fans were under the impression they could smoke in the grandstands when they bought their tickets, Cheatwood told the Daytona Beach News-Journal.

Traditionally, NASCAR had a strong relationship with the tobacco industry. The top prize was called the Winston Cup from the early 1970s until 2003. Winston cigarettes are made by RJ Reynolds.