Located in Sparta, Kentucky, the Kentucky Speedway has played host to some of America’s most popular racing events, including the NASCAR Nationwide Series, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, IRL IndyCar Series, IRL Firestone Indy Lights, and the ARCA RE/MAX Series. It is a 1.5 mile tri-oval track measuring 70 feet wide with 12 foot shoulders and turns banked at 14 degrees. The grandstands have a seating capacity of more than 60,000 with a 2,000 seat Bluegrass Club and plenty of camping spaces and facilities to accommodate the crowds of racing enthusiasts attracted to the track by its program of events.
Some of the “firsts” recorded for the Kentucky Speedway include the first race on June 16, 2000, being the NASCAR Slim Jim All Pro Series “Kentucky 150”. The attendance at the event was 36,210 and the winner was Bill Bigley Jr., with an average speed of 111.747 mph in his #28 Peerless Woodworking/Nevamar Decorative Services Chevrolet. The purse was set at $95,050. The first pole sitter at this inaugural event was Brian Smith in his #20 Juba Glass Chevrolet Monte Carlo, with a qualifying time of 150.038 mph. The first winning crew chief was Bill Bigley, Sr.
In May 2008, Speedway Motorsports bought Kentucky Speedway from Jerry Carroll, with the deal finalized in October of that year. Its been reported that the new owners aim to secure a place in the NASCAR Sprint Series, but as at the end of 2009 this had not yet become a reality. Nonetheless, Kentucky Speedway continues to host the other events mentioned at the outset, offering auto racing enthusiasts a world-class venue to enjoy their favorite fast-paced sport.
When most people think about the Mansfield Motorsports Park, they think of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Ohio 250. This might be the biggest event at the park, but it definitely isn’t the only one. Racing fans in the area will be happy to know that there are plenty more great races that are scheduled to take place at Mansfield Motorsports Park this year.
Mansfield Motorsports Park’s summer racing season will see at least five more nights of top racing action. There are also a further two community events that have been slated for the 2008 racing season. The next exciting date on the park’s calendar is June 14. This is when the Greased Lightning 250 will stop by for its Northern Division. The race is the first of two USAR Hooter’s Pro Cup Series races that will be taking place at the Mansfield Motorsports Park. The series will return on August 30 with the Sears Auto Center 250; the race that will mark the kick-off of the Championship Series. The Hooter’s Series has become incredibly popular over the past five years and today it is one of the premier events held at the track each year. Last year’s Hooter’s Championship Series race was held on Labor Day weekend and won by Bobby Gill. There was good support for the event, excellent weather and the racing was worth watching. Indeed, Hooters is the premier short track stock car series in the U.S.
The racing action doesn’t end with the Hooter’s series. On the June 28th the American Speed Association’s Late Model Challenge Series will be making its way to Mansfield for the PPG All American Classic 200. July is a quiet month for the track with only the annual Freedom Festival and Fireworks Show being scheduled for July 4. August 9th is the next big date to watch for, with the Open Wheel Extravaganza returning to the track along with the Hoosier Outlaw Sprint Series. Later that same month the NASCAR Camping World Series makes a stop here, as does the Whelen Modified Tour. As if that wasn’t enough, the Hooter’s Championship Series brings the racing action to a close just one week later. The final non-racing event to take place at the park is the Autism Awareness Walk-A-Thon, which will take place on September 20th. Clearly Mansfield supporters can look forward to a fun, action-packed season.