Auto Club Speedway

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Auto Club Speedway
Auto Club Speedway (formerly California Speedway) - Speedway.svg
Location 9300 Cherry Avenue, Fontana, California, United States
Time zone UTC-8
Capacity 122,200
Owner International Speedway Corporation
Operator International Speedway Corporation
Broke ground 1995
Opened 1997
Construction Cost $100 million
Architect Paxton Walters Architecture
Penske Motorsports, Inc.
Former Names California Speedway (1997-2007)
Major Events Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
NASCAR Xfinity Series
AMA Superbike
D-shaped oval
Surface Asphalt
Circuit Length 2 mi (3.2 km)
Turns 4
Banking Turns: 14°
Frontstrech: 11°
Backstretch: 3°
Lap Record 241.428 miles per hour (Gil de Ferran, Team Penske, October 28, 2000, CART)
Interior Test Circuit
Surface Asphalt
Circuit Length 1.45 mi (2.3 km)
Turns 13
Sports Car Course
Surface Asphalt
Circuit Length 2.8 mi (4.5 km)
Turns 21
Motorcycle course
Surface Asphalt
Circuit Length 3.79 mi (2.736 km)
Turns 21
Drag strip
Surface Asphalt
Circuit Length 1/4 mi (0.40 km)

Auto Club Speedway (formerly called California Speedway[1]) is a 2-mile (3.219 km), low-banked D-shaped oval superspeedway which had hosted NASCAR races since 1997, It was also used for open wheel racing events, The speedway is located near the former locations of Ontario Motor Speedway and Riverside International Raceway, The track is owned by International Speedway Corporation. The speedway is served by the nearby Interstate 10 and Interstate 15 freeways as well as Metrolink station located by the backstretch.

Construction of the track, on the site of the former Kaiser Steel Mill, began in 1995 and was completed in late 1996, The speedway has a capacity of 68,000 and 28 skyboxes and a total of 28,000, In 2006, a fan zone was added behind the main grandstand, Lights were added to the speedway in 2004 with the addition of a second annual NASCAR race weekend. Since 2011, Auto Club Speedway has hosted only one NASCAR race weekend.

IndyCar hosted events since 2012 with its season finale (a 500-mile night race), the series previously ran a 400-mile race from 2002 to 2005.

Circuit history[change | change source]

On April 20, 1994, Roger Penske and Kaiser announced the construction of a racetrack on the site of the abandoned Kaiser Steel mill in Fontana, California, A day after the announcement, CART announced it would hold an annual race at the speedway, Three months later, NASCAR president Bill France Jr. agreed to sanction a Winston Cup Series race at the track that yet to be built.[2] Community meetings were held to discuss issues related to the construction of the track and the local effects of events held, The local community largely supported construction of the speedway citing potentially increased land values and rejuvenation of the community, In April 1995, after touring the sister track, Michigan International Speedway, the San Bernardino County Board of Superiors unanimously approved the project.[3] The California Environmental Protection Agency gave Penske permission to begin construction after Kaiser agreed to pay $6 million to remove hazardous waste from the site, Construction of the site began on November 22, 1995 with the demolition of the Kaiser Steel Mill. The 100-foot water tower, a landmark of the Kaiser property, was used as a scoreboard. 3,000 cubic yards (2,300 m3) of contaminated dirt was removed and transported to a toxic waste landfill, To prevent remaining impurities from rising to the surface, a cap of non-porus polyethylene was put down and covered with 2 feet (0.610 m) of clean soil.[4] Construction of the track was completed in late 1996.[5] On January 10, 1997, Marlboro Team Penske's driver Paul Tracy became the first driver to test on the new speedway, NASCAR held its first open test session on at the track from May 5-7, The official opening and ribbon cutting ceremony was held on June 20, 1997, with the first race, a NASCAR West Series race, being held the next day.[6]

The first NASCAR Winston Cup Series race (now the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series) was held on June 22, 1997, and the first NASCAR Busch Series (now the Xfinity Seriesrace was held on October 30, 1997.

Auto Club Speedway lost its playoff date in 2011.[7]

Track length[change | change source]

The track length is 2.00 miles (3.219 km), the interior test circuit is 1.45 miles (2.334 km), the sports car course is 4.5 kilometres (2.8 mi), the Motorcycle course is 3.79 miles (6.099 km), and the drag strip is 14 mile (0.402 km).

Related pages[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. Cook, Zachary (March 5, 2016). "Jayski's® NASCAR Sprint Cup News - Track News Archive". www.jayski.com. Retrieved March 15, 2016.
  2. Peltz, James F. (March 25, 2017). "Thriving Auto Club Speedway has history of peaks, valleys". latimes.com. Retrieved March 25, 2017.
  3. GLICK, SHAV (1995-11-27). "New Track Is a Steel : California Speedway Will Be Built on Site of Old Fontana Mill". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved November 13, 2010.
  4. Peltz, Jim (2014-03-21). "Auto Club Speedway slashes grandstand seating by 26% to 68,000". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved September 21, 2010.
  5. Eisenberg, Jeff (2007). "Auto Club Speedway, Fontana". RacingCircuits.info. Retrieved September 14, 2010.
  6. Cook, Zachary (2016-03-19). "10 facts you might not know about Auto Club Speedway". FOX Sports. Retrieved 2016-03-19.
  7. Cook, Zachary (2010-08-18). "NASCAR - CUP: Auto Club Loses Chase Date - SPEED.com". NASCARspeedtv.com. Retrieved September 14, 2010.