Finally! After what feels like a long off season, the 2016 race season kicks off this weekend with the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona.
It’s going to be a wet start to on track activities on Wednesday. A low pressure system will be tracking east across the northern Gulf of Mexico, and the southerly flow ahead of it will spread plenty of moisture across Florida through the day. Periods of showers can be expected just about any time of the day, and some thunderstorms will be possible. The rain may be heavy at times, especially in the afternoon and evening. High temperatures will be in the lower 70s.
On Thursday, a cold front will be tracking east across Florida. While the exact timing of the cold front is still a little uncertain, at this time, it looks like the best chance of rain on Thursday will be in the early morning hours, with decreasing rain chances through the day. A thunderstorm is not out of the question in the morning. The total amount of rain that can be expected Wednesday through Thursday is between 1 inch and 1 and a half inches. Some showers may linger into the afternoon, but I think most of the rain will be over by noon. There could even be a few breaks of sunshine through the clouds late in the day.
The cold front will have moved through by Friday morning, and temperatures will definitely be on the chilly side. Low temperatures Friday morning will only be in the mid 40s, and highs will be in the lower 60s. This is close to 10 degrees below normal for this time of year in Daytona Beach. It will be breezy all day, with northwest winds between 10 and 20 mph.
The weather looks great for racing Saturday and Sunday, with mostly clear skies and dry conditions expected from start to finish. Temperatures will be getting warmer, with highs Saturday in the upper 60s, and into the lower 70s on Sunday.
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