It's hard to imagine the first $400 million phase of the new Daytona International Speedway will be wrapped up by January's Rolex 24, judging by all the cranes and hard hats.
"We are under race preparations now," Santiago said.
Crews were pouring pilings, grading and paving the area so fans can walk through it in January.
State legislators just filed a bill to give the Speedway taxpayer money, which could help pay for extra gift shops, landscaping and other details that had to be cut.
"Motorsports has been excluded this whole time, so really we are just coming up to the even level with the rest of the sports properties in the state," Santiago said.
The new grandstands will hold 101,000 fans in bigger and more comfortable seats.
The stadium will also have 60 luxury suites, twice as many bathrooms and three times as many concession stands.