Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Great forecast for Speed Street, races ... probably

This is among the most important outdoor forecasts of the year in the Charlotte region, as hundreds of thousands of people will be enjoying the races and other activities at Charlotte Motor Speedway; the festivities at Food Lion Speed Street in Charlotte's uptown; and all the other things we have planned for the first summer holiday of the year.

Fortunately, the forecast is really good.

You might have noticed that "probably" word in the headline above this post. Let's deal with that first.

Some of the longer-range forecasts are hinting that another tropical system could develop near the Bahamas in a few days and then possibly drift toward the Carolinas by the weekend. For now, forecasters are a bit skeptical.

Harry Gerapetritis, of the National Weather Service office in Greer, S.C., said the forecast bears watching, but he adds that high pressure expected to strengthen later this week over the Southeast could serve as a block to any tropical system.

And Mark Bacon, a Weather Service meteorologist at the office in Charleston, notes that climatology argues against such a system forming. It's simply too early in the season, he says. Then again, Bacon notes, that didn't stop Tropical Storm Alberto from springing into existence near Charleston last weekend.

Let's assume, for a second, that there's no tropical system -- the likely scenario.

Then we're looking at a taste of summer weather.

Unsettled conditions today will still be around Wednesday, and there might even be a thunderstorm or two left in the region Thursday afternoon. But for the most part, it will turn dry across the Charlotte area after Wednesday.

Temperatures likely will climb steadily through the weekend, although an east wind off the ocean could cut a few degrees off Monday's highs.

What does all this mean for your plans?  Let's make it simple.

GOING TO THE SPEEDWAY?  Take the sunscreen. It looks warm and dry, with highs in the mid 80s Thursday, the upper 80s Friday, and near 90 degrees Saturday and Sunday. That means the Nationwide Series race Saturday afternoon will be run under hot conditions. On Sunday night, it looks now as if temperatures will be near 90 degrees when the drivers are introduced, with readings falling back through the 80s during the race.

FOOD LION SPEED STREET.  Once again, it looks good. You can expect clear to partly cloudy conditions each evening, with temperatures in the upper 80s around 6 p.m., falling back to the lower 80s by late evening.  Rain should be no problem.

GOING TO THE BEACH?  Great weather.  Mostly sunny during the days and clear at night, with highs in the middle 80s and lows in the middle 60s. 

HEADING FOR THE MOUNTAINS?  It looks good there, too.  You can expect clear to partly cloudy skies each day, but conditions will remain dry. Highs will be near 80 degrees in most tourist areas, with lows in the upper 50s.

STAYING IN THE CHARLOTTE AREA?  This will be a good weekend to test the swimming pool or head for the lakes.  Expect sunny to mostly sunny skies each day, with mostly clear nights. Daily highs will be in the upper 80s Friday and near 90 degrees Saturday and Sunday. Monday's highs might only hit the middle 80s, but it'll remain nice.


Anonymous said...

Man....wish I was going to the beach this weekend!

Anonymous said...

Speed Street forecast:

Great weather for all the filth thug welfare animals to rob you.

Will said...

The rain we've had the last two nights has been INSANE!

Anonymous said...

Anyone know the water temps on the lakes? Or ocean?