NASCAR is looking to bring a new short track to California
Auto Club Speedway broke ground in 1995. Penske Motorsports, Inc. was the developer of the track.
The track is a D-shaped 2-mile oval. Fontana, California is the location for the NASCAR track.
Since 2011, the track has only hosted one NASCAR Cup Series race per year. Attendance issues have also been an issue for the speedway.
The track has since been sold to International Speedway Corporation. Recently, ISC became a division of NASCAR itself via a merger.
It takes a lot of land to make a 2-mile oval. The surrounding real estate in Fontana, California has been highly developed around the track, raising the value of the land from it’s 90’s debut.
What if the track was smaller?
That appears to be on the drawing board. California could become NASCAR’s newest short track.
Plans have surfaced which show a conversion of the 2-mile oval to a 1/2 mile short track. It would feature long straight-aways, similar to Martinsville. The corners would be narrow, like Martinsville but high banked, like Bristol.
Plans have already been filed with San Bernadino County.
NASCAR statement on the Auto Club Speedway project
“We are still very early in the process, but we are excited about what this ambitious project could mean for our loyal fans in Southern California,” said Craig Neeb, NASCAR executive vice president, chief innovation officer.
He added, “This is our first step towards creating a state-of-the-art facility that would deliver the intense short-track racing our fans love, an intimate viewing experience, and upgraded suites and hospitality areas that would position Auto Club Speedway among the top entertainment venues in the market.”
NASCAR hopes to begin construction after the Spring 2021 race. With the newest short track making it’s debut in 2022.