Pikes Peak International Raceway

February 9, 2009 by  
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Pikes Peak International Raceway was reopened in 2008 and is now under the ownership of a private company, Pikes Peak International Raceway, LLC.

Pikes Peak International Raceway is situated in Fountain, Colorado USA. Just to the north of Pueblo, but south of Colorado Springs, Pikes Peak Raceway was originally the site of a horse racing track named Pikes Peak Meadows. The auto racing track of Pikes Peak was constructed in 1997 and was popular for many years. The speedway was purchased in 2005 by International Speedway Corporation who decided to close the facility down.

When Pikes Peak International Raceway was founded in 1997 it was the first super-speedway to be constructed in the Rocky Mountain area. The track itself was a 1 mile oval with a D-shape and a 1.315 mile road course. The width of the paved oval was 60-71 feet and the turns were at 10 degrees. Grandstands at Pikes Peak Raceway were able to accommodate some 42 000 spectators. Added to this was 31 luxury suites for VIP guests. A pedestrian tunnel provided access to the infield which had a care center along with a helipad. Also on the infield was a corporate village. Other convenient facilities at Pikes Peak super-speedway were the Pikes Peak Club, handicapped amenities and overnight RV spots.

A number of exciting races were held at the Pikes Peak International Raceway during its hey-day. Amongst these were IRL Series races, superbike events, sprint car races, midget car racing, the NASCAR Busch Series and many more. During its history there have been many great wins at Pike Peak. NASCAR Busch Series winners at Pikes Peak are as follows: 1998 – Matt Kenseth in a Chevrolet; 1999 – Andy Santerre in a Chevrolet; 2000 – Jeff Green in a Chevrolet; 2001 – Jeff Purvis in a Chevrolet; 2002 – Hank Parker Jr. in a Dodge; 2003 – Scott Wimmer in a Chevrolet; 2004 – Greg Biffle in a Ford and 2005 – David Green in a Ford. It would definitely appear that Chevrolet dominated the Pikes Peak speedway. Perhaps if the NASCAR track had continued operating, Ford would have taken the lead. Unfortunately, that theory will never be put to the test and Pikes Peak International Raceway will become a name mentioned in the history books of NASCAR racing.

Auto Club Speedway of Southern California

February 9, 2009 by  
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Previously known as the California Speedway, the Auto Club Speedway of Southern California has a slight variation on the classic oval race track design, the banks are much gentler than at other NASCAR locations. You might think that a track which is relatively low and not very challenging, might take a bit of a back seat on the NASCAR circuit. However, nothing could be further from the truth! The Auto Club Speedway is a great hit with NASCAR fans and drivers. It provides a superior auto racing experience, and is enjoyable for those comparatively new to NASCAR as well. What is so special about this 2-mile track?

A dedication to spectator delight marks the management of the Auto Club Speedway. Continuous upgrades and investments make sure that auto racing standards meet the taxing NASCAR safety requirements, while no thought is spared for the enjoyment of the paying public. The Auto Club Speedway offers a superior viewing experience, whether from the stands, or on large television screens. Spectators in Recreational Vehicles who frequent this NASCAR track, have been consulted when adjustments had to be made to the area which has been reserved for them earlier. Live bands and top grade catering add to the experience at this track, which is within easy reach of downtown Los Angeles.

The Auto Club Speedway auto racing product offering is comprehensive. Nextel and Busch series combine with truck and motorcycle racing here. The track has seen quality competition during its relatively short career, and new NASCAR enthusiasts flock in by the day. This is quite remarkable considering the myriad of other recreational attractions in the neighborhood.

Motorcycles

February 9, 2009 by  
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Motorcycles vary greatly in size and design from 50cc minibikes to sport and cruising bikes with multi-cylinder engines boasting displacements of over 1,000cc. Motorcycle racing can be risky business requiring great skill and confidence. There are many kinds of motorcycle races in which various types of motorcycles can compete.

Road racing is done on public roads or purpose-built tracks and includes racecourses such as the Isle of Man TT and the Macau Grand Prix. Racers may enter different categories such as the 50cc races, the classic motorcycle racing section or superbikes. Specially designed motorcycle racing tracks have been designed for circuit racing. Top-level circuit races include MotoGP and Superbike. Classic motorcycle racing involves the racing of modified motorcycles that date from the 1970s or earlier.

Motocross and Supercross are popular races held on natural or man-made dirt tracks and often feature large jumps. It can be a real thrill to watch a half-dozen roaring machines leap into the air in unison! Supermoto is a combination of road racing and motocross racing. In Motorcycle Speedway circuit racing, the riders will slide the bikes around the corners, their kneepads sometimes scraping the track as they lean into the turns. This is also done in grass track motorcycle racing.

Enduro racing involves traveling over long distances through rough, isolated terrain. A typical example is the famed Dakar Rally that takes usually takes place in the West African nation of Senegal. Completing a course that includes sandblasted stretches of the Sahara Desert, one really learns the true meaning of the word ‘endurance’. Motorcycle endurance rallying is not focused on completion time, but rather works off a points system. The race covers great distances and takes many days to complete. Then there are low speed races called Motorcycle Trials. In this type of motorcycle race, competitors use specially designed bikes and must traverse a daunting range of obstacles. Motorcycle drag racing (or Sprints) is pretty much what it sounds like: two riders accelerating down a quarter mile straight track, with the first to the finish line being declared the winner. In Hill Climbing, the riders must attempt to make it to the top of the hill in the quickest time. Last but not least is Land Speed Racing. The object here is for a motorcycle rider to exceed the previously set speed record. The rider accelerates over a distance of 1 to 3 miles and is timed at the end of the run.

Most of the many types of motorcycle racing described above are conducted in different experience levels, such as Novice and Pro motorcycle racing. Pro motorcycle racing is taken very seriously, and involves significant financial backing and the need for sponsorships to help cover the costs of fielding a team.

Bristol Motor Speedway

February 9, 2009 by  
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Part of Bristol lies in the State of Virginia, but the NASCAR section of the Bristol Motor Speedway is located in Tennessee. The twin city may be well known for country music, but it is also a hot spot on the NASCAR circuit. The Bristol Motor Speedway has a capacity for approximately 160 000 spectators, and typically every seat is taken well before time. It has not been around for as long as many of its peers, and has changed hands several times as well, but has emerged as a money spinner and a source of some of the best quality of NASCAR racing to be had anywhere. Ingenious site and track development keeps NASCAR and spectators keen on the Bristol Motor Speedway.

The concrete surface of the track is built for speed, with especially impressive records in the Nextel and Busch series. The track length is relatively short compared to most other NASCAR locations, at just over half a mile, but the banks have been heightened to 36 degrees each, testing driver skills to the hilt. The track is just 40 feet wide, and even the straights have 16 degree banks. Nextel series races go the full 500 laps, though the Busch series is less demanding at half that number. Lesser events generally run over just 150 laps.

The grandstand has been designed to give each spectator a great view of the action. Camping grounds and facilities for recreational vehicles are of such quality that spots are typically sold out even before a season commences!

The Bristol Motor Speedway offers complete auto racing excitement, and meets all NASCAR performance and safety standards. The site is very spectator-friendly, going the extra distance to make sure that everyone gets their money’s worth. Bristol Motor Speedway is set in Bristol, which in itself is a delightful city for NASCAR fans, with plenty of golf and other attractions to make for a refreshing vacation. Book your place for your favorite NASCAR races at the Bristol Motor Speedway before everything is taken!

Charlotte Motor Speedway

February 9, 2009 by  
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As of 2010 Lowe’s Motor Speedway became Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Stock car racing is extremely popular in South Concord, North Carolina. Designed and built in 1959 by O. Bruton Smith and the late Curtis Turner, Charlotte Motor Speedway (previously Lowe’s Motor Speedway) remains one of the premier racing locations in the United States.

Smith and Turner, together they built their dream of a 1.5-mile super-speedway on the outskirts of The Queen City and, on June 19, 1960, the first World 600 was run at this new facility. It took nearly 25 years for Lowe’s Motor Speedway to come of age. The Smith Tower – a 135,000-square-foot, seven-story facility connected to the speedway’s grandstands – was erected and opened in 1988. The building houses the speedway’s corporate offices, ticket office, souvenir gift shop, leased office space and The Speedway Club, an exclusive dining and entertainment facility.

Another innovation was a $1.7 million, 1,200-fixture permanent lighting system developed by MUSCO Lighting of Oskaloosa, Iowa. The revolutionary lighting process uses mirrors to simulate daylight without glare, shadows, or obtrusive light poles. The lighting system was installed in 1992, allowing Lowe’s Motor Speedway to be the first modern super-speedway to host night auto racing.

In addition to the 1.5-mile quad oval, the Charlotte Motor Speedway complex includes a 2.25-mile road course and a six-tenths-mile karting layout in the speedway’s infield; a quarter-mile asphalt oval utilizing part of the speedway’s front-stretch and pit road; and a one-fifth-mile oval located outside turn three of the super-speedway.

With those kinds of track conditions, it’s no wonder the schedule of racing events at Charlotte Motor Speedway reads like a Who’s Who of NASCAR: The NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series events, two NASCAR Busch Series races and a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event are among the major events held on the 1.5-mile super-speedway. The Richard Petty Driving Experience and the Fast Track High Performance Driving School also use the track extensively throughout the year.

Most recently, the track added a new garage area for the NASCAR Busch Series, a new state-of-the-art media facility and additional restrooms and showers for use by those enjoying the action from the speedway’s infield. These additions are all part of a long-term project calling for additional grandstand seating, infrastructure improvements, spectator amenities and the development of adjacent land for possible commercial real estate ventures.

Charlotte Motor Speedway: tradition only takes you so far. After that, it’s a matter of speed and innovation. Oh, and a seating capacity of nearly 170,000 doesn’t hurt either.

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