It’s been a long time. After 20 years, 31 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races, 19 XFINITY Series races and 15 Camping World Truck races since it was last repaved in the spring of 1997, Atlanta Motor Speedway’s 1.54-mile quad oval track will see one more race in each of NASCAR’s top three series this before getting a facelift later this spring. Atlanta’s is the second-oldest surface on the NASCAR circuit.
Some of the many iconic events in NASCAR’s history that happened on the current surface include Dale Earnhardt’s 0.01-second margin of factory over Bobby Labonte in 2000, Kevin Harvick’s emotional and record-setting 0.006-second margin of victory over Jeff Gordon in Earnhardt’s Richard Childress Racing car the following year, Carl Edwards’ first Cup Series victory and subsequent season sweep of both Atlanta races in 2005 and the first-ever Atlanta night race in 2009.
Georgia native Chase Elliott, who cut his teeth in the Legends program at AMS and who was about 1 ½ years old when the current surface was lain, identifies the 2017 Atlanta race as one he particularly looks forward to.
“I’m going to enjoy this race weekend, because of the (coming) surface change,” he said. “I think we all enjoy the surface that’s there and just the options it gives you as a driver to move around.”
This weekend is also a milestone race for all of NASCAR.
In its 68th year of competition, NASCAR will run its 2,500th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway during this Sunday’s Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500. It will also be Atlanta Motor Speedway’s 102nd 500-mile race. No other track on the circuit has hosted as many races of that length.
Race fans, the 2017 Atlanta NASCAR weekend gets underway Friday, March 3 with practice sessions from all three NASCAR national touring series, followed by Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series qualifying. On Saturday, AMS will host NASCAR’s only same-day doubleheader with the Rinnai 250 XFINITY Series and Active Pest Control 200 Camping World Truck Series races. The Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race rounds out the weekend on Sunday, March 5.
For more information or to purchase tickets today, contact the Atlanta Motor Speedway ticket office at (770) 946-4211, (877) 9-AMS-TIX or visit www.atlantamotorspeedway.com.