Success in South Boston Speedway’s season-opening Danville Toyota Twin 100s this Saturday night may well end up being traced back to last Saturday.

Teams rolled into the historic racing venue last Saturday for the track’s annual practice day, often considered one of the most important days of the season even though there are no trophies or points on the line.

“It was important to us,” Danny Willis Jr. said of the practice day he used to prep for the 2018 Late Model Stock season. “We learned quite a bit based off our times from last year. We still have a little work to do. I do think we are in the ballpark. We’re just going to tweak on it some this week.”

Saturday night will mark the 61st consecutive season of racing at South Boston Speedway. Five races in four divisions are on tap, featuring twin 100-lappers for the Late Models. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. with the first race beginning at 7 p.m.

Saturday’s test was vitally important for young Kirstin Simmons. She made the move up to the Limited Sportsman Division this season after spending time in the Budweiser Hornets Division two years ago. She didn’t race last year as her family team worked on building a new Limited car for 2018.

“I thought practice went awesome,” said Simmons, a high school senior. “I learned a great new line on the track. We’ve got a couple of things to work on with the car this week. But all-in-all it was a great learning experience. We are excited about this Saturday!”

Even though Willis probably has as many laps at South Boston Speedway as anyone that will be in the field in the opener, he said last Saturday’s practice session was needed for him to get 2018 off to a good start.

“We wanted to make sure we knocked the rust off; that the car had no leaks or issues,” said Willis, who finished third in the 2017 Late Model championship race. “It was knocking the rust off the driver, too. Mostly the driver. I hadn’t been in the car since the last race of the season in September.

“We made some good runs. We weren’t the fastest, but we think the car will race good.”

South Boston Speedway’s season-opening Danville Toyota Twin 100s on March 24 will feature twin 100-lap Late Model Stock races, a 50-lap Limited Sportsman Division race, a 30-lap Budweiser Pure Stock race and a 15-lap Budweiser Hornets race. will have RACEDAY LIVE coverage presented by Halifax Insurance and Sellers Racing from the event starting at 6:00pm with qualifying for the Puryear Race Parts Late Model Stock Cars.