Once upon a time, the fastest places in south Cook County were Interstate 75 and U.S. Highway 41. In 2004, that changes.

An area of land between the two roads, a mile north of Cecil, is being developed into the South Georgia Motorsports Park. Under construction these days are 6,000 seats, half facing the quarter-mile dragstrip, the other half facing what will be the half-mile speedway. VIP suites will rise above the grandstand.

A concession stand pavillion is already taking shape, as is the dragstrip. The dragstrip's control tower is in place. And January may be the busiest month for above-ground construction as the facility rounds into shape.

Already scheduled for 2004 (June 4-6) is a National Hot Rod Assocation Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Southeast Division race. South Georgia Motorsports Park will be the newest track on the division's seven-event schedule, replacing the Atlanta Dragway in Commerce. Also on the division's schedule are Gainesville, Fla.; Orlando, Fla.; Montgomery, Ala.; Bristol. Tenn.; Reynolds, Ga.; and Darlington, S.C.

Park officials plan to announce the rest of the 2004 schedule on Jan. 20. For more on the park, check out its website at www.sogamoto.com or read updates in upcoming Sunday editions of The Valdosta Daily Times.

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