Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Fast Track Facts: Dover International Speedway

credit: NASCAR Media
Dover International Speedway is more often referred to by its nickname, the “Monster Mile.” Learn more about Delaware’s one-mile concrete oval in this week’s Fast Facts.
  • Work on Dover Downs International Speedway began in 1966 and was completed in 1969, with the Melvin Joseph Construction Company handling the duties. The first race at the track, then an asphalt oval, was held on July 6, 1969, with Richard Petty taking the checkered flag in the Mason-Dixon 300. Dover has hosted at least two races each NASCAR season since then.
  • Beginning with the 1971 season, all non-NASCAR sanctioned races were removed from the track’s schedule so that they could concentrate on two 500-mile Cup Series races. In 1982, the first NASCAR Late Model Sportsman Series race (now Xfinity Series) was held at Dover; a second race for the series was added in 1986.
  • Also in 1986, expansion began at the track, lasting 15 years. Among the highlights of the expansion: grandstand seating additions that brought the capacity up to 135,000 spectators by 2001, a switch from asphalt to concrete track surface in 1995, the addition of Dover Downs Slots in Dec. 1995, reducing Cup Series race lengths from 500 to 400 miles in 1997 and the debut of the Craftsman (now Camping World) Truck Series in 2000. Two Indy Racing League races were held at the track in 1998 and 1999.
  • In 2002, Dover Downs became Dover International Speedway, with the gaming and harness racing side of the company becoming Dover Downs Hotel and Casino.
  • In 2004, the Monster Bridge deluxe seating structure that extends over Turn 3 was opened, and in 2006 the “Monster Makeover” was announced, a second multi-year, multi-phase improvement project. That project included the construction of a 12-suite skybox complex in 2007, the 46-foot Miles the Monster Monument in Victory Plaza in 2008, improvements to pit road in 2009 and the widening of grandstand seating in 2011 (reducing seating capacity from 140,000 to 113,000).
  • Jimmie Johnson holds the record for all-time wins at Dover, currently at 10, while David Pearson holds the record for most pole positions at six. Brad Keselowski holds the Cup Series qualifying record (21.892 seconds/164.444 mph), set in May 2014.
  • Find out more about the track at www.doverspeedway.com


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