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Encyclopedia > Music City Motorplex
Music City Motorplex
The Fairgrounds
Facility statistics
Location Nashville, Tennessee
Broke ground 1904 , 1958
Opened 1904
Owner Tennessee State Fairgrounds
Operator Joe Mattioli
Construction cost
Architect
Former names
Nashville Speedway USA
Major events
operates as regional NASCAR local track
Seating capacity
15,000
Current dimensions
Track shape Oval
Track length 0.596 miles
Track banking Turns - 18 degrees
Straights - 3 degrees

Music City Motorplex is a NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series racetrack located at the Tennessee State Fairgrounds near downtown Nashville, Tennessee. The track is one of the oldest tracks in the United States. The track held NASCAR Grand National/Winston Cup (now NEXTEL Cup) races from 1958 to 1984, when it was called Nashville Speedway USA. The winner's trophy for NASCAR races held at the track was a Les Paul guitar from Gibson. Nickname: Music City Official website: http://www. ... Official language(s) English Capital Nashville Largest city Memphis Area  - Total  - Width  - Length  - % water  - Latitude  - Longitude Ranked 36th 109,247 km² 195 km 710 km 2. ... 1904 (MCMIV) was a leap year starting on a Friday (link will take you to calendar). ... 1958 (MCMLVIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1904 (MCMIV) was a leap year starting on a Friday (link will take you to calendar). ... The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) is the largest sanctioning body of motorsports in the United States. ... Nickname: Music City Official website: http://www. ... NASCAR Nextel Cup logo The NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series is NASCARs top racing series. ... Les Paul (born June 9, 1915) is best known as a guitarist, and as one of the most important figures in the development of modern electric instruments and recording techniques. ... This article or section needs to be wikified. ...

Contents


Track Configuration History

Nashville Speedway USA is currently an 18 degree banked paved oval. The track is 0.596 mile long. Inside the larger oval is a quarter-mile paved oval.


The track was converted to a half-mile paved oval in 1957, when its began to be a NASCAR series track. The speedway was lengthened between the 1969 and 1970 seasons. The corners were cut down from 35 degrees to their present 18 degrees in 1972. The track was repaved between the 1995 and 1996 seasons.


Track History

The track first featured "horseless carriages" and motorcycles on June 11, 1904 on a 1 1/8 (1.125) mile dirt oval. Races were canceled after a motorcycle ran in to the back of a car that was lining up. Harness (horse) racing events were also held at the track. June 11 is the 162nd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (163rd in leap years), with 203 days remaining. ... 1904 (MCMIV) was a leap year starting on a Friday (link will take you to calendar). ...


In September 1904 another series of races was organized. Most of the entrants came directly to Nashville from the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis, Missouri. Racing pioneer Barney Oldfield was one of the entrants. People marveled at cars driving over 60 miles per hour (100 kilometers per hour). Entrance to Creation Exhibit on the Pike Map of the St. ... Nickname: Gateway City, Gateway to the West, or Mound City Official website: http://stlouis. ... Barney Oldfield (June 3, 1878-October 4, 1946) was an automobile racer and pioneer; born in a farmhouse on the outskirts of Wauseon, Ohio. ...


The track began holding annual events in September 1915 to coincide with the state fair. Many of the same drivers from the Indianapolis 500 brought their cars down to Nashville. Indianapolis 500, 1994 The Indianapolis 500-Mile Race, frequently shortened to Indianapolis 500 or Indy 500, is an American automobile race held annually over the Memorial Day weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Speedway, Indiana. ...


Local tracks sprange up and began running weekly Saturday night shows (collectively called the "Legion Bowl"), and the local racers competed at the track for the 1954 through 1957 State Fairs. In 1958 car racers decided to build a paved racetrack. The racers ended opposition from horse racers by building a horse track. The racers got a 10-year lease from the state fair board in order to build a paved 1/2 mile track which shared the frontstretch with a 1/4 mile track. On July 19, 1958, the first race was held at the new speedway. Races were held only on the 1/4 mile track (except for special events).


The original cars (since 1948) were 1930s model cars called "Modified Specials". By 1964 the parts for cars were too hard to find, so the track changed to newer 1950s model cars called "Late Model Modifieds". Some of the early stars of the track decided to retire.


1960s

The 1960s also frequently brought drivers from outside Nashville, most notably the Alabama Gang. The Alabama Gang (from Hueytown, Alabama) included future NASCAR legends Bobby Allison, Donnie Allison, and Nashville native Red Farmer. The Alabama Gang was the nickname for a group of NASCAR drivers who set up shop and operated out of Hueytown, Alabama, near Birmingham, Alabama. ... Bobby Allison (born December 3, 1937) was one of the first NASCAR drivers and was named one of NASCARs 50 greatest drivers. ... Donnie Allison is a former driver on the NASCAR Winston Cup circuit, who won ten times during his racing career, which spanned the 1960s, 1970s and early 1980s. ... Charles Red Farmer (October 15, 1931 or [[October 15}}, 1932- was a racecar driver. ...


Coo Coo Marlin was the first back-to-back champion in 1965/1966. 1968 champion P.B. Crowell decided to retire, and hired the talented young Darrell Waltrip to drive his car. Clifton Coo Coo Marlin (January 3, 1932–August 14, 2005) was a NASCAR Winston Cup driver who spent 14 years in the series. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...


Several changes happened at the track in the 1960s. Lights were added to the 1/2 mile track in 1965, and races in the main division moved to the big track. A fire burned the grandstands at the 1965 State Fair. Weekly Tuesday night races were added, and fans were awed by the crazy Figure-8 drivers barely missing each other as they crossed each other's paths. New grandstands were built and the track was lengthened (and banked to 35 degrees) in 1969.


1970s

The bankings in the corners proved to be too fast, so the banking was reduce to 18 degrees. The new ownership decided to hold no weekly races in 1979.


The 1970s also featured talented drivers that would progress to NASCAR's highest division. Second generation drivers Sterling Marlin (son of Coo Coo) and Mike Alexander (son of car owner R.C.) were both track champions. Alabama Gang member Jimmy Means took the track title home to Alabama in 1974 before he moved on to NASCAR. Sterling Marlin (born June 30, 1957 in Columbia, Tennessee) is a NASCAR Nextel Cup Series driver who currently drives the #40 Coors Light Dodge for Chip Ganassi Racing. ... Mike Alexander (born July 31, 1957) was a NASCAR Winston Cup driver. ... Jimmy Means is a former Winston Cup/Nextel Cup owner/driver. ...


1980s

In 1980 the track reopened to weekly racing. The new headline division featured smaller Camaro-type bodies called "Late Model Stock Cars". The new division caught on slowly, and only 13 drivers competed in the first race. The division finally caught on in 1987. NASCAR stars that raced in 1987 or 1988 included Bobby Allison, Sterling Marlin, Mike Alexander, Darrell Waltrip, Bill Elliott, and Dale Earnhardt. Third generation driver Bobby Hamilton won track championships in 1987 and 1988. Modified 1969 Chevrolet Camaro. ... Bobby Allison (born December 3, 1937) was one of the first NASCAR drivers and was named one of NASCARs 50 greatest drivers. ... Sterling Marlin (born June 30, 1957 in Columbia, Tennessee) is a NASCAR Nextel Cup Series driver who currently drives the #40 Coors Light Dodge for Chip Ganassi Racing. ... Mike Alexander (born July 31, 1957) was a NASCAR Winston Cup driver. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... This article is about the NASCAR driver Bill Elliott. ... This article or section seems not to be written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia entry. ... Bobby Hamilton (born May 29, 1957 in Nashville, Tennessee) is a driver and owner in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series circuit. ...


1990s

The 1990 season was dominated by Jeff Green. Chad Chaffin won the 1993 and 1995 track championships. Andy Kirby won the 1994, 1996, and 1997 track championships before being killed in a motorcycle accident. Jeff Green (born September 6, 1962 in Owensboro, Kentucky) is a NASCAR NEXTEL Cup driver who drives the #43 Cheerios/Betty Crocker Dodge Charger for the Petty Enterprises team, and a part-time Busch Series driver in the #25 U.S. Marines Ford Taurus for Team Rensi Motorsports. ... Chad Chaffin from Smyrna, TN was born July 20, 1968. ... Andy Kirby(born November 30, 1961, in White House, Tennessee), is a former stockcar driver, most notably in NASCAR. Kirby did not initially begin with NASCAR, where his career would end. ...


The track was renamed "Music City Motorplex" for 2002 by new promoter Joe Mattioli, the owner of Pocono Raceway and South Boston Speedway. Pocono Raceway is a superspeedway located in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania at Long Pond; it is the site of two annual NASCAR Nextel Cup races held just a few weeks apart in June and July. ... South Boston Speedway or SoBo is a race track located in South Boston, Virginia, approximately sixty miles east of another area familiar to most NASCAR fans, Martinsville. ...


NASCAR Winston Cup track history

The track held at least one Cup race each year from 1958 to 1984.


A capacity crowd of 13,998 watched Joe Weatherly win the first NASCAR race on August 10, 1958. Joe Weatherly is a former NASCAR driver. ...


Geoff Bodine beat Darrell Waltrip for his second career win in the last Winston Cup race at the track. Geoffrey Bodine (born April 18, 1949 in Chemung, New York) is the oldest of the three Bodine brothers (Brett Bodine and Todd Bodine) who are all NASCAR drivers. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... The NASCAR Championship is the championship held in NASCARs top stock car racing series. ...


NASCAR left the track because the grandstands are too small, and because of a dispute over who would manage the track took place prior to the start of the 1985 season.


Of the 42 Cup races, Richard Petty and Darrell Waltrip are tied for the most wins with eight wins. Waltrip won 5 of 6 races between 1981 and 1984. Waltrip's victory in the 1988 Busch Series event gives him the career best nine wins total at the track. Counting NASCAR, USAC, ASA, and local track races, Waltrip holds the all-time track record for wins with 67. Richard Lee Petty (born July 2, 1937 in Level Cross, North Carolina) is a renowned former NASCAR Winston Cup Series driver. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... 1981 (MCMLXXXI) was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1984 (MCMLXXXIV) was a leap year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) is the largest sanctioning body of motorsports in the United States. ... USAC Logo The United States Automobile Club (USAC) is an open-wheel auto racing sanctioning body. ... The American Speed Association (ASA) was a sanctioning body of motorsports in the United States from 1968 until its demise in 2004 due to financial problems. ...


Track hosts only Busch Series Events

The track held 9 Busch Series races in 1984, 1988, 1989, and from 1995 to 2000. The track was replaced on the schedule by the newly opened Nashville Superspeedway. NASCAR Busch Series logo The Busch Series is a stock car racing series owned and operated by NASCAR. It is NASCARs second division (often compared to Triple-A baseball), and is a proving ground for drivers who wish to step up to the organizations top level, the Nextel... 1984 (MCMLXXXIV) was a leap year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1995 (MCMXCV) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... This article is about the year 2000. ... Nashville Superspeedway is a motor racing complex located in Gladeville, Tennessee (though the track has a Lebanon address), United States, about 48 km (30 miles) east of Nashville. ...


Craftsman Truck Series Events

The track held 5 Craftsman Truck Series events between 1996 and 2000. The track was replaced on the schedule by the newly opened Nashville Superspeedway. NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series logo The Craftsman Truck Series is a popular NASCAR racing series that features modified pickup trucks. ... 1996 (MCMXCVI) was a leap year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year for the Eradication of Poverty. ... This article is about the year 2000. ... Nashville Superspeedway is a motor racing complex located in Gladeville, Tennessee (though the track has a Lebanon address), United States, about 48 km (30 miles) east of Nashville. ...


List of Famous Former Weekly Drivers

The number and quality of former weekly drivers to reach the upper levels of NASCAR demonstrates how high the competition level must have been at the track, and the importance that the track has had to the sport.


Joe Buford - 4 time track champion Joe Buford (born June 19, 1967) at Franklin, Tennessee) is a racecar driver. ...


Andy Kirby - 3 time track champion Andy Kirby(born November 30, 1961, in White House, Tennessee), is a former stockcar driver, most notably in NASCAR. Kirby did not initially begin with NASCAR, where his career would end. ...


Chad Chaffin - 2 time track champion Chad Chaffin from Smyrna, TN was born July 20, 1968. ...


Mike Alexander - 2 time track champion Mike Alexander (born July 31, 1957) was a NASCAR Winston Cup driver. ...


Jeff Green - 1 time champion Jeff Green (born September 6, 1962 in Owensboro, Kentucky) is a NASCAR NEXTEL Cup driver who drives the #43 Cheerios/Betty Crocker Dodge Charger for the Petty Enterprises team, and a part-time Busch Series driver in the #25 U.S. Marines Ford Taurus for Team Rensi Motorsports. ...


Bobby Hamilton - 2 time track champion (plus 2 time champion in a lower division) Bobby Hamilton (born May 29, 1957 in Nashville, Tennessee) is a driver and owner in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series circuit. ...


Sterling Marlin - 3 time track champion Sterling Marlin (born June 30, 1957 in Columbia, Tennessee) is a NASCAR Nextel Cup Series driver who currently drives the #40 Coors Light Dodge for Chip Ganassi Racing. ...


Jimmy Means - 1 time track champion Jimmy Means is a former Winston Cup/Nextel Cup owner/driver. ...


Darrell Waltrip - 2 time track champion To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...


Coo Coo Marlin - 4 time track champion Clifton Coo Coo Marlin (January 3, 1932–August 14, 2005) was a NASCAR Winston Cup driver who spent 14 years in the series. ...


Deborah Renshaw - became the first woman to ever lead a NASCAR sactioned series when the young woman climbed to the top of the points standings at Nashville Speedway USA. The #8 EasyCare Dodge at California Speedway. ...


Chase Montgomery - ran the full 2000 season Chase Montgomery drives the #18 Dodge for Bobby Hamilton Racing in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. ...


Casey Atwood - 1996 Rookie of the Year Casey Lee Atwood(born August 25, 1980 in Nashville, Tennessee), began racing NASCAR as a teenager, first in the Busch Series #27 Castrol car, and then in the Nextel Series as a member of the Ray Evernham Dodge Motorsports stable. ...


Jeremy Mayfield - regular weekly competitor Biography Jeremy Mayfield (born May 27, 1969 in Owensboro, Kentucky) is a NASCAR Nextel Cup Series driver. ...


Bunkie Blackburn - regular weekly competitor James Ronald Bunkie Blackburn (April 22, 1936 - February 28, 2006) was a NASCAR racecar driver. ...


External links

  • Official website
  • Terra Server Aerial Photo

 
 

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