The Great Richmond International Raceway

May 17, 2009


One of the most historic tracks in racing is also one of the most popular among drivers, fans and the media. Year after year, Richmond International Raceway puts on the best short track show, and arguably the best racing anywhere. Why? Richmond’s unique, 3/4 mile D shaped oval layout produces tremendous side-by-side racing, yet drivers obtain high enough speeds to give it a superspeedway feel. That rare combination still allows for the beating and banging that fans love, with the drivers’ skill playing a major role in winning. In the words of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series icon Rusty Wallace, those characteristics help make racing at the track and the experience fans have while visiting, simply “perfect”.


The raceway features 14° banking on the turns, 8° banking on the front stretch and 2° banking on the back stretch. The front stretch is 1,290 feet in length and the back stretch is 860 feet long.

In October of 1946 driving an open-wheel car, Ted Horn wins the first race at the raceway, then named the Atlantic Rural Exposition Fairgrounds, over a 1/2 mile dirt track. NASCAR was founded in 1948, and five years later the sanctioning body staged a race in its Grand National Division at Atlantic Rural Exposition Fairgrounds on April 19, 1953.Since the first NASCAR race in Richmond in 1953, the track has undergone three name changes, five configuration changes and one surface change, from dirt to asphalt. Lights were also added to the facility in 1991. During the 2006-2007 off season, Richmond International Raceway added nearly 5,000 seats, bringing its total capacity to 112,029.


Richmond Raceway Complex is a sprawling, 1,000 acre, multi-purpose facility that is home to Richmond International Raceway and one of the most versatile special events sites in the country. It has six permanent buildings with more than 300,000 square feet of exhibition and meeting space. More than 1.2 million visitors attended consumer trade shows, special events, corporate meetings, concerts and outdoor festivals at Richmond Raceway Complex in 2008.


The Richmond Raceway Complex is located just outside of the city of Richmond in beautiful Henrico County. Richmond, one of the most historic cities in the United States, is the capital of the Commonwealth of Virginia and Henrico County is over 350 years old. Richmond Raceway Complex offers free parking for show and event guests as well as an on-site catering service. It is conveniently located near major highways including I-95, I-64 and I-295.


The arrival and popularity of the IndyCar Series at Richmond International Raceway in 2001 has been an added bonus for race fans in the Mid-Atlantic Region. With speeds nearly 50 mph faster than their NASCAR counterparts, the IndyCar Series plays host to increasing, enthusiastic crowds at Richmond. Each season, Richmond International Raceway hosts two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, two NASCAR Nationwide Series races, an IndyCar Series event, a USAC Silver Crown Series event and a USAC National Sprint Car Series race.


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