Bristol Raceway: NASCAR Track Facts

The last Great Coliseum, and the most popular Nascar race are both titles that the Bristol race claims for its self. Both The Roman Coliseum, and the race at Daytona may raise an eyebrow at such large claims, but Bristol Motor Speedway if not a 100% claim on either of those titles it certainly in the running.

It is a massively popular race, and full of excitement and the location is simply superb. If not the last coliseum it certainly has a claim on being a great one for the gladiators of NASCAR to do battle as they tackle the world’s fastest half mile!

We take a look at the track facts for the awesome Bristol Motor Speedway and track below, and if you want to know about other NASCAR tracks then you can use the table below which has all the NASCAR track covered so far.

NASCAR Track Facts

Los Angeles ColiseumDaytona International SpeedwayLas Vegas Motor Speedway
Auto Club SpeedwayPhoenix RacewayMartinsville Speedway
Atlanta Motor SpeedwayCircuit of The AmericasDarlington Raceway
Bristol Motor SpeedwayTalladega SuperspeedwayDover Motor Speedway
Kansas SpeedwayTexas Motor SpeedwayCharlotte Motor Speedway
Indianapolis Motor SpeedwayWorld Wide Technology RacewaySonoma Raceway
Nashville SuperspeedwayRoad AmericaNew Hampshire Motor Speedway
Pocono Raceway

Bristol Motor Speedway Track Facts.

Below you will find, hopefully, everything you need to know about this most popular of NASCAR speedways. Feel free to update or let us know anything we may have missed.

Where is Bristol Motor Speedway?

Bristol Motor Speedway is located in Bristol, Tennessee. It is about 100 miles north of Charlotte, South Carolina and 100 miles west of Knoxville Tennessee.

What is The Configuration of Bristol Motor Speedway?

The Bristol Motor Speedway, the fourth largest sporting venue in the USA,has a 0.533-mile oval race track (0.833 km) with 26-30 degree banking in the turns and the straights have 6-10 degree banking. The frontstretch is 860 feet long, while the backstretch is 650 feet long. It has two pit lanes on the front and back stretch.

Bristol Motor Speedway Characteristics

Bristol Motor Speedway is one of the most popular NASCAR tracks because of its unique, high-banked short track layout. The banking and concrete surface provide for some of the fastest speeds and closest racing in all of NASCAR. It has seating all around which traps sound and makes it, reportedly, the loudest race of the season !

What is the Difference between a Nascar Asphalt Race and a Dirt Race?

The main difference between a NASCAR asphalt race and a dirt race is the surface on which they are run. Asphalt races are held on smooth, paved tracks while dirt races are held on tracks that are surfaced with packed dirt.

This can make for a very different racing experience, as the two types of surfaces can have a significant impact on how the cars handle. Asphalt tracks are typically more forgiving than dirt tracks, meaning that they are easier to drive on and produce less wear and tear on the cars.

Dirt tracks, on the other hand, can be more challenging to drive on and can be hard on the cars. This difference in surface can make for a very different racing experience, so it is important to be aware of it when choosing which type of race to watch.

Normally Bristol is actually a concrete track however!

Why Does Bristol Motor Speedway Have a Concrete racetrack?

When it was first constructed in 1960 the bristol motor speedway had a track made of asphalt, like most other Speedway. For many years this worked great. Cars were slower and caused less pressure on the track. However as this pressure and the speeds of NASCAR racing increased it started to cause problems.

The asphalt track surface was starting to break up in the sharp high banked turns. There was significant remedial work to address this, as it was affecting grip and therefore the safety of race cars during races. the owners attempted resurfaces and new designs but these were not successful.

in 1992 It was a decided to try a new approach and the whole track was re surfaced with concrete rather that asphalt. It made Bristol Motor Speedway the first to host a NASCAR Cup race on Concrete in August 1992.

What are the benefits of a Concrete Racetrack?

The owners of bristol Motor Speedway, and texas motor Speedway have gone for concrete for a number of reasons. they suggest the following:

  • Concrete provides more consistent traction for race cars.
  • It retains heat better, and won’t get cool or hot as quickly.
  • It deals with extremes of weather better.
  • As it retains oil much better than asphalt there is less likelihood of oil seeping onto the track when its hot.

However concrete tracks are more expensive, and the owners are hoping that the reduction in maintenance and repairing costs will make it better economically as well as improving races over the years.

Is Bristol Motor Speedway the loudest NASCAR race?

The Coliseum type layout of the Speedway at Bristol, coupled with both the engines and the roar of the crowd bouncing around the stadium makes the races here the loudest races of the season. If ever you need Ear protection at a NASCAR Race it is here!! We have a full article on the best Ear protection for NASCAR here and below (see what we did there ! )

Bristol Motor Speedway Racing Lines

The preferred racing line at Bristol is the high line around the top of the race track. This allows drivers to carry more speed through the turns and get a better exit onto the straights.

There are two main racing lines at Bristol Motor Speedway. The high line is the outside groove and the preferred line for most drivers. The low line is the inside groove and is used mostly by lapped traffic or when a driver is trying to make a pass on the inside.

What is the Trophy for Winning a NASCAR Race at Bristol Motor Speedway

In keeping with the nickname of the last great coliseum Opens in a new tab.the trophy follows the theme. winners of the NASCAR race will receive more than just the prize money. they also receive a Gladiator Sword! it appears the they “DO NOT ENTERTAIN!”

What is the Nickname of Bristol Motor Speedway

Bristol Motor Speedway is nicknamed “The Last Great Colosseum” because of its large seating capacity and the fact that it is one of the last remaining big NASCAR tracks. It is also nicknamed “Thunder Valley” because of the loud noise made by the cars as they race around the track.

however as is fitting with one of the most popular NASCAR races of the season the nicknames keeping coming! it also has the names, “the Worlds Fastest Half Mile” the Loudest Race and the “Most Popular NASCAR Race”

What are The Lap Records at Bristol Motor Speedway?

The current NASCAR lap record at Bristol Motor Speedway is held by Chase Elliot, who ran a lap of 131.713 mph in 2019. That’s the NASCAR lap record anyway. However Bristol Motor Speedway often replaces its asphalt for dirt, and when the Sprint cars get hold of the “fastest half mile” they have done a lap in 0:13.326 seconds with Sam Hafertepe Jr in 2021 on a World of Outlaws Sprint Car race. You can check out the table below for more details.

NASCARChase Elliott14.568 Seconds2019
Sprint (clay) – OutlawsSam Hafertepe Jr.13.326 Seconds2021
Overall (X-treme Speed ClassicBrian Gerster12.742 Seconds2011

What is The Race Record at Bristol Motor Speedway?

The race record at Bristol Motor Speedway is held by Joey Logano, who won the 2015 Food City 500 with a time of 3 hours, 4 minutes, and 11 seconds.

Is Bristol Motor Speedway A Tough Track?

Bristol is often referred to as the “World’s Fastest Half-Mile” and is one of the most competitive and challenging tracks on the NASCAR circuit. The short length of the track combined with the high banks and concrete surface make for a very fast and physically demanding race.

The additional pressure form being such a popular race also affects drivers, as seen from tempers fraying during the race. Chase Elliott and Kevin Harvick getting into it in 2021 for example.

What Kind of Weather Conditions Does Bristol Motor Speedway Experience?

The weather at Bristol Motor Speedway can be very hot and humid in the summer months. The track is located in the Appalachian Mountains, so the fall and spring months can see a wide range of temperatures.

The race schedule at Bristol typically begins in late March or early April and ends in late August or early September.

When Was Bristol Motor Speedway Raceway Built?

Bristol Motor Speedway was originally built in 1960 and called Bristol International Speedway, it was designed on the back of paper bags!. The track was then expanded and reconfigured in 1969, resulting in the current 0.533-mile oval layout with its high banking.

How Many Seats Does Bristol Motor Speedway Have?

Bristol Motor Speedway has a capacity of 162,000 seats. This is huge for a half mile stadium anywhere in the world!

How Much do NASCAR tickets cost at the Bristol Motor Speedway?

The ticket price range for Bristol Motor Speedway starts at $60.00 -$200 for general admission depending where the seat is located, and goes up to $115 for the weekend ticket. if you are looking for both races in April and September it will cost 200 USD for both weekends.

you are looking at 300 USD for top of the line seats. If you want to splash out then VIP packages and suites are also available

Bristol Motor speedway

Why is the Bristol Motor Speedway a dirt race track?

The Bristol Motor Speedway is a short track, and dirt races lend themselves better to dirt races. There was an idea to add something a little different to the seasonOpens in a new tab. and Bristol seemed to be a good fit. It has 162000 seating and the spring race was starting to struggle to look full, so NASCAR decided to try something a little new.

Bristol had previous hosted World of Outlaws on Clay so the option was there. Just to spice it up more these dirt race take place under lights!

How Did Bristol Motor Speedway Get Its Name?

The Bristol Motor Speedway got its name from the city of Bristol, Tennessee, where the track is located. However it didn’t get this name fully until 1996, prior to this it was called the Bristol International Speedway, it has swapped between the two names a few times!

What Type of Track is Bristol Motor Speedway?

Bristol Motor Speedway is a short track that is 0.533 miles (0.858 km) long with 24-degree banking in the turns. The frontstretch is 860 feet (262 m) long, while the backstretch is 650 feet (198 m) long. It is a oval race track.

Does Bristol Motor Speedway Have Lighting for Night Racing?

Yes, Bristol Motor Speedway is equipped with lighting for night racing. The track hosted its first night race in 1995 and has been able to host night races ever since.

How Many Races are Held at Bristol Motor Speedway Each Year?

Bristol Motor Speedway typically hosts two NASCAR Cup Series races each year. The track also hosts the NASCAR Xfinity Series and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. The Bristol Motor Speedway is also home to the Allstar races and NASCAR whelen and ARCA series.

It also hosts drag racing, Sprints and Short track racing.

How Many Laps are in a Race at Bristol Motor Speedway?

The NASCAR Cup Series races at Bristol Motor Speedway are 500 laps, while the NASCAR Xfinity Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races are 300 laps. The NASCAR All-Star Race is a 200-lap race. This makes the Cup series race 266 miles long.

How Long is a Race at Bristol Motor Speedway?

As mentioned above the NASCAR Cup series race is 500 laps or 266 miles. This means the average length of time for a NASCAR Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is 3 hours, 4 minutes, and 11 seconds. The NASCAR Xfinity Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races are typically 2 hours, 30 minutes long. The NASCAR All-Star Race is typically 1 hour, 50 minutes long.

What are Some of the Notable Races at Bristol Motor Speedway?

Some of the most notable races at Bristol Motor Speedway include the Food City 500, the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race, and the NASCAR All-Star Race as well as sprint and drag racing.

What Drivers Have Won the Most Races at Bristol Motor Speedway?

The drivers with the most wins at Bristol Motor Speedway are Darrell Waltrip (12), Rusty Wallace (9), Cale Yarborough (8), and Alan Kulwicki (6). The driver with the most wins who is currently driving is Kyle Busch with 8.

How Many Spectators can Attend Bristol Motor Speedway?

Bristol Motor Speedway has a capacity of 160,000 spectators. The spring race was starting to lose spectators and has now moved to both night and dirt racing to try to improve this.

Who Owns Bristol Motor Speedway?

The current owner of Bristol Motor Speedway is Bruton Smith with Speedway Motorsports. Who also own , Charlotte, Atlanta, New Hampshire, and Texas speedways among others.

What is the Banking on Bristol Motor Speedway?

Bristol Motor Speedway is 0.533 miles (0.858 km) long with 26-30-degree banking in the turns. the straightaways are 6-10 degree banking.

How can I get tickets to the Bristol Motor Speedway?

Tickets for the Bristol Motor Speedway can be purchased online at the speedway’s websiteOpens in a new tab. or by calling the ticket office.

Can you Tour the Bristol Motor Speedway

Yes, you can tour the Bristol Motor Speedway. Tours are available Monday-Saturday 9:00am to 4:00pm and Sunday 11:00am to 4:00pm. Although not on race days.

What is the Address of Bristol Motor Speedway?

The address of Bristol Motor Speedway is 151 Speedway Blvd, Bristol, TN 37620.

Can you Camp or bring an RV to the Bristol Motor Speedway?

Yes, you can camp or bring an RV to the Bristol Motor Speedway. Camping and RV spots can be reserved through the speedway’s website.Opens in a new tab. As it is a small track you are not goign to be camping inside though, just to be aware.

What are the Rules for Bringing a Pet to the Bristol Motor Speedway?

Pets are not allowed in the grandstands, but they are allowed in the camping areas. All pets must be on a leash at all times. Service animals are permitted.

Does the Bristol Motor Speedway have Wifi ?

Yes, the Bristol Motor Speedway has wifi. The wifi is free for all guests. It also has an app to download and use during events.

What is the Phone Number for the Bristol Motor Speedway?

The phone number for the Bristol Motor Speedway is 866 – 415 – 4158

What Food and Drink Concessions Do They have at Bristol Motor Speedway ?

The Bristol Motor Speedway has a wide variety of food and drink concessions. Some of the options include hot dogs, hamburgers, pizza, chicken, sandwiches, salads, soft drinks, beer, and wine. Some of the bars are really nice. You can bring your own food, beer and drinks too.

Can you bring Coolers to Bristol Motor Speedway.

Coolers are allowed as long as they are soft sided (we have an article on the details here) and you can bring food and drinks inside the speedway. You are allowed to bring your own beer also, just don’t bring glass bottles.

Do you need Seat Cushions At Bristol Motor Speedway?

No, seat cushions are not required at Bristol Motor Speedway. However, they are allowed and we have details on the best ones here.

Is There an Age Limit For Entering the Bristol Motor Speedway?

There is no age limit for entering the Bristol Motor Speedway. However, children under the age of 12 the cup series races cost just 10 dollars and children under 12 can go to NASCAR Xfinity / Truck races as well! To buy alcohol you will need to have ID and be over 21.

What is the Policy For Wheelchair users at Bristol Motor Speedway?

The Bristol Motor Speedway is wheelchair accessible. Wheelchair-accessible seating is available in all grandstands. Guests can also rent electric scooters at the speedway. There is also parking assigned, shuttles and buses, shuttles / golf carts for those with mobility issues.

What Should I Bring To The Bristol Motor Speedway?

Some items that you may want to bring to the Bristol Motor Speedway include sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, binoculars, and comfortable shoes.

You can also bring a cooler ( special size see here) with your own food and drinks.

What Time Should I Arrive At The Bristol Motor Speedway?

Guests should arrive at the Bristol Motor Speedway at least 2 hours before the start of the race. The build up and the actual race or something you certainly don’t want to miss a second of!


Hopefully you have all the information you need for your visit to this iconic NASCAR track, and have a great day! Enjoy!



Al lifelong Motor Racing Fan, with a particular love of NASCAR and IndyCar racing. Been in and out of cars of varying speeds since i was a child and sharing what i have learnt here.

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