The Las Vegas Motor Speedway has been part of the Nascar tour since its inception in 1996, when it began hosting the Truck Series. It has been part of the Cup Series schedule for over a quarter century, beginning in 1998 when Mark Martin drove his iconic no.6 Valvoline Ford into victory lane in the inaugural Cup event.
While it may not be considered a crown jewel event, the Pennzoil 400 is about as close as a race can get. With its proximity to the glamorous Las Vegas Strip, the race has long been seen as one of the more prestigious events on the tour.
We will be working through the tracks this season to give you all new and little known information about them. We will update the table on each page.
Where is the Las Vegas Motor Speedway?
The track is located in Clark County, Nevada. It sits on a 1200-acre facility about 15 minutes from the glitz and glamour of the Las Vegas Strip, at the far end of the Las Vegas Valley.
When was the Las Vegas Motor Speedway Built?
What became the present-day Las Vegas Motor Speedway started life as the Las Vegas Speedrome, opening in 1972 following the closure of the Stardust International Raceway. This first iteration of the venue featured a road course and drag strip.
A 3/8-mile oval was added in 1985. Built on the site of the old venue at a cost of $72 million, the Las Vegas Motor Speedway in its current form was opened in 1996 and hosted IndyCar and Nascar Truck Series races later that year. The Cup Series came to Sin City two years later in 1998.
What type of track is the Las Vegas Motor Speedway?
The track is not only a Nascar venue but was also designed to be an all-around motorsports mecca for several forms of racing. The “main” track (the 1.5-mile asphalt speedway used by Nascar) features a tri-oval design with 12-20° progressive banking in the turns.
Las Vegas Motor Speedway also has two short track ovals – one asphalt and one dirt – as well as a drag strip, a road course with 3 different configurations, and an off-road motocross style track with multiple configurations.
Table 1. Las Vegas Motor Speedway courses and configurations.
|Superspeedway||3/8-mile bullring||1/2-mile bullring||Drag strip||Road Course|
|1.5 miles||0.375 miles||0.5 miles||0.25 miles||1.1-2.4|
What Events are held at Las Vegas Motor Speedway?
With world-class facilities and its prime location in a one of the county’s biggest entertainment markets, LVMS is quite a busy place throughout the year, and plays host to a great many events of the racing variety and otherwise.
- The Pennzoil 400 Presented by Jiffy Lube is the track’s crown jewel and the third race on the Cup schedule.
- The venue also hosts Junior Dragsters on its drag strip in addition to NHRA events, including the NHRA four-wide nationals.
- The dirt track is home to World of Outlaws racing as well as the stock cars, late models and modifieds of the IMCA (International Motor Contest Association) which has been around since 1915 and is the oldest auto racing sanctioning body in the United States.
- There are also muscle car shows, drift challenge contests and off-road trophy truck races just to give a sampling of what the track has to offer gearheads of all stripes – the full event calendar is too exhaustive to list here.
- Other events include live music concerts and even Daytona 500 viewing parties (though these are held at the South Point Hotel).
- The speedway even has facilities to host weddings.
- Las Vegas Motor Speedway is the home of The Electric Daisy Carnival, which is a large electric music festival. The track was also the terminus of the 24th season of The Amazing Race.
2011 IZOD IndyCar World Championship
The track was the scene of a tragic accident in the 2011 IndyCar season finale, in which reigning Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon lost his life after suffering blunt force trauma to the head when his car collided with the outside wall.
IndyCars have not returned to the speedway since and in fact ovals seem to be in shorter and shorter supply in the IndyCar series as time moves on.
What are the NASCAR Records At the Las Vegas Motor Speedway?
Track records (Nascar Cup Series)
|Qualifying||Kurt Busch||27.498 s (196.378 mph)||March 4, 2016|
|Race||Brad Keselowski||2h 35m 24s (154.633 mph)||March 9, 2014 Kobalt Tools 400|
|Wins||Jimmie Johnson||4||2005; 2006; 2007; 2010|
Who has won in the Cup Series at Las Vegas Motor Speedway
Since the Cup Series began running at the speedway, 28 races have been held at Las Vegas Motor Speedway at the time of this writing (beginning in 2018 Las Vegas Motor Speedway acquired a second Cup event). The track has seen 16 different Cup Series winners, with Jeff Burton, Carl Edwards, Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex Jr., and Joey Logano each winning there twice.
Matt Kenseth and Brad Keselowski have three wins each at Vegas, and Jimmie Johnson leads with four, including an impressive three-in-a-row from 2005-2007.
Which leaves 8 other drivers scoring wins at the track. Las Vegas natives Kurt and Kyle Busch are both winners at Las Vegas Motor Speedway
Table 3. Las Vegas Motor Speedway Race Winners NASCAR Cup Series
|2020||South Point 400||Kurt Busch||9||Chevrolet|
|2020||Pennzoil 400||Joey Logano||5||Ford|
|2019||South Point 400||Martin Truex Jr.||24||Toyota|
|2019||Pennzoil 400||Joey Logano||10||Ford|
|2018||South Point 400||Brad Keselowski||13||Ford|
|2018||Pennzoil 400||Kevin Harvick||2||Ford|
|2017||Kobalt 400||Martin Truex Jr.||2||Toyota|
|2016||Kobalt 400||Brad Keselowski||4||Ford|
|2015||Kobalt 400||Kevin Harvick||18||Chevrolet|
|2014||Kobalt 400||Brad Keselowski||2||Ford|
|2013||Kobalt Tools 400||Matt Kenseth||18||Toyota|
|2012||Kobalt Tools 400||Tony Stewart||7||Chevrolet|
|2011||Kobalt Tools 400||Carl Edwards||3||Ford|
|2010||Shelby American||Jimmie Johnson||20||Chevrolet|
|2009||Shelby 427||Kyle Busch||1||Toyota|
|2008||UAW-Dodge 400||Carl Edwards||2||Ford|
|2007||UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400||Jimmie Johnson||23||Chevrolet|
|2006||UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400||Jimmie Johnson||3||Chevrolet|
|2005||UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400||Jimmie Johnson||9||Chevrolet|
|2004||UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400||Matt Kenseth||25||Ford|
|2003||UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400||Matt Kenseth||17||Ford|
|2002||UAW-Daimler-Chrysler 400||Sterling Marlin||24||Dodge|
|2001||UAW-Daimler Chrysler 400||Jeff Gordon||24||Chevrolet|
|2000||CarsDirect.com 400||Jeff Burton||11||Ford|
|1999||Las Vegas 400||Jeff Burton||19||Ford|
|1998||Las Vegas 400||Mark Martin||7||Ford|
Which Manufacturer Has the Most Wins at Las Vegas Motor Speedway?
- Ford has seen the most success at the track by a significant margin, with 13 race victories.
- Chevrolet has won at the track 9 times
- Toyota has 5 Las Vegas wins
- Dodge scored 1 victory at the track before leaving the series at the end of the 2012 season.
Can you drive on the Las Vegas Motor Speedway?
There is the option to drive a huge selection of supercars on the road tracks inside the speedway in LAs Vegas, with Dream racing. They are similar priced to the one in south of Las Vegas below. they include Mustangs, Porsche, Mercedes, Lamborghinis and Ferraris
There are a few driving options in Las Vegas, one we would like to try is the SpeedVegas drive a supercar package. Although this isn’t at the official speedway. Mainly as they have a Mclaren there! my dream car!
You can choose from a Porsche Cayman for 199 USD for five laps, up to a Lamborghini Aventador and a Ferrari 488 Pista for 499/599 USD as well. They also have off road and karting experiences as well.
How Many Spectators can Las Vegas Motor Speedway Hold?
There is room for 80,000 spectators at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Who owns Las Vegas Motor Speedway?
The owner of Las Vegas Motor Speedway is Speedway Motorsports. They are a Huge name is NASCAR and racing and also have a lot of tracks on the NASCAR circuit including Atlanta, Dover, Bristol, Nashville, New Hampshire and more.
Can you take a Cooler into Las Vegas Motor Speedway?
Coolers are not allowed in the grandstands at this speedway, however you can bring in your own food and drinks in moderation. One non-alcoholic drink 20 ounces or less, and a sandwich, chips etc.
They do have concessions at the speedway so you can buy refreshments inside, including beer!
Can you Camp and Do they have RV Parking at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
There are camping areas and RV parking available on NASCAR race weeks you can check availability and prices here.
What is the NASCAR Experience at Las Vegas Motor Speedway?
There is the opportunity to drive a NASCAR Stock car by yourself around the track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. You will even have a Spotter guiding you around the track. If you ever wanted to try to be a NASCAR driver this may be your chance!
Hopefully something you didn’t know there, or at least a few links to help you find out what you needed to know. We have a series of these being written so feel free to check out the other NASCAR Track pages if you need more information .