Auto Club Speedway

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Auto Club Speedway (formerly California Speedway) - Speedway.png
Auto Club Speedway of Southern California
Nicknames Fontana
Time GMT-8
Location 22px-Flag of the United States.png 9300 Cherry Avenue, Fontana, California 92335
Capacity 91,200 (NASCAR)
Owner International Speedway Corporation
Operator International Speedway Corporation
Broke ground 1995
Opened 1997
Construction cost $100 million USD
Architect Paxton Waters Architecture
Penske Motorsports, Inc.
Former_names California Speedway (1997-2007)

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Auto Club 500
Pepsi 500
NASCAR Nationwide Series
Stater Brothers 300
Camping World 300 presented by
NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series
San Bernardino County 200
AMA Superbike
Suzuki Superbike Challenge

Miles first True
Layout1 D-shaped oval
Surface asphalt
Length km 3.265
Length mi 2.029
Banking Turns: 14 degrees
Frontstretch:11 degrees
Backstretch : 3 degrees
Record time 241.426 miles per hour
Record driver Gil de Ferran
Record team Penske Racing
Record year October 28, 2000
Record class CART
Layout2 Infield Road Course
Surface2 asphalt
Layout3 Drag strip
Surface3 asphalt

The Auto Club Speedway of Southern California (formerly California Speedway) is a two-mile, low-banked, D-shaped oval superspeedway in Fontana, California, similar to its "sister track" Michigan International Speedway.



Main Grandstand at Auto Club Speedway

Construction and location

The track is located on the site of the former Kaiser Steel mill. It is a relatively new race track, opening in early 1997, and has additional configurations and facilities to accommodate "road" races, motorcycle races, vehicle testing, and drag races (Auto Club Dragway). The racetrack is near the former locations of Ontario Motor Speedway and Riverside International Raceway. After Riverside's closure in 1988, Southern California did not host a NASCAR race until California Speedway was opened. In addition to NASCAR, the raceway has also hosted open-wheel events from both CART and the Indy Racing League.

Like many modern oval tracks, Auto Club Speedway also features an infield road-course, which has been used by the Grand American Road Racing Association (GARRA) and by the Japanese Grand Touring Car Championship, with the JGTC race being unique as a night race. The GARRA Rolex Sports Car Series no longer races at Auto Club Speedway. The NASCAR West Series held its first race on the infield course, won by Jason Bowles.

Notable events

During the 1999 CART race, Canadian driver Greg Moore was killed in a crash along the backstretch of the track. It was determined that after sliding along the infield grass, Moore's car hit the edge of oncoming pavement, which caused the car to flip into a concrete retaining wall. This incident resulted in a major overhaul of the track, including the paving of the infield grass on the backstretch in time for the 2000 NASCAR event.

On October 28, 2000, during CART qualifying, Gil de Ferran set the track record for fastest lap at Template:Convert/mi/hTemplate:Convert/test/Aon. This was also a world speed record for the fastest lap of a closed course.

On September 21, 2003 during an IRL race, Sam Hornish, Jr. set the track record for fastest average speed during a race at Template:Convert/mi/hTemplate:Convert/test/Aon.

In 2005, 20 year old Kyle Busch earned his first ever NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win at Auto Club Speedway. He is to date the youngest driver to win a race in the Sprint Cup Series.

Name change

On February 21, 2008, the Automobile Club of Southern California became the title sponsor of the raceway, renaming the official name Auto Club Speedway of Southern California. The naming rights deal will last for ten years and is worth an estimated $50 to $75 million. In addition to naming rights, the ACSC will also have use of the facility for road tests for Westways Magazine and other consumer tests. The money will be used for capital improvements.

Usage in television shows, commercials and major film

The facility is often used for television shows and commercials, and for major films. In 2000, portions of Charlie's Angels were filmed at the speedway and in 2004, portions of Herbie: Fully Loaded were filmed there.

Track timeline


  • July 18, 1994: CART signs on to officially run races at California Speedway in a multi-year deal.
  • June 20, 1997: Official opening of California Speedway.
  • October 31, 1999: Greg Moore, racing in CART's Marlboro 500, is killed when his car spun off of the second turn and is tipped cockpit first into a concrete barrier on the inside of the back strech of the track at a high rate of speed. His blue open wheel car was smashed literally into pieces.


  • ?, 2000: The Back strech infield is completely paved for safety as a response to Greg Moores death the previous year.
  • February 9, 2001: A proposal is sent to San Bernardino County to build a quarter-mile drag strip at California Speedway for the NHRA to use.
  • June 19, 2001: An official announcement is made that the California Dragway will be made, along with the plans of a road course integrated into the 2.0mi speedway.
  • April 24, 2003: An announcement is made that lights will be installed in the raceway sometime during 2004.
  • September 5, 2004: The first race under the lights is run at California Speedway, a NASCAR NEXTEL Cup series (now Sprint Cup Series) race won by Elliott Sadler.
  • October 16, 2005: Dario Franchitti wins last IRL race held at California Speedway. Dario will be inducted to the California Speedway Walk of Fame at Gate 14, which honors the winners of Champ Car and IRL at the track, during the 2008 Auto Club 500 weekend.
  • December 11, 2005: Japan's Super GT starts their only race on American soil at California Speedway
  • September 7, 2007: Guest stars Zack and Cody show up to wave the green flag.
  • September 7, 2007: Race car driver Ricky Rud breaks his hand in a big wreck at the front curve a away.
  • September 7, 2007: Race car driver Robby Gordon sets the fastest speed at the finishline while going backwards at 141.231 MPH.
  • February 21, 2008: A deal is made with the Automobile Club of Southern California to change the track's name from California Speedway to Auto Club Speedway of Southern California.
  • February 24, 2008: First time the COT Sprint Cup car is used for a race at the track.
  • February 24, 2008: First time a NASCAR Sprint cup car flips upsidedown at the track. (Casey Mears in the 5 car)
  • February 25, 2008: First time a Sprint Cup race is run on a Monday at the track.
  • February 25, 2008: First time in NASCAR were a caution is caused by a race track light.
  • February 25, 2008: First time a race winner does not do a burn out at the track. (Race car driver Carl Edwards won the race and did a back flip off his car instead)
  • February 25, 2008: First time a Nationwide race is run on a Monday at the track.
  • January, 2009: Auto Club Speedway lowers the ticket price of the front five rows of the main grand stands from $45 to $35 dollars (The fist time ever that the track has lowered a ticket price. Reduction was due to bad Economy).

Current races

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series statistics

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Records

(As of 02/25/08)

Most wins 3 Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson Most Top 5s 8 Jeff Gordon Most Top 10s 9 Matt Kenseth Starts 16 5 drivers Poles 3 Kurt Busch Laps led 525 Jeff Gordon Avg. start* 8.6 Kasey Kahne Avg. finish 6.4 Jimmie Johnson

* from minimum 5 starts.

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race Winners

  • - Race extended due to Green-White-Checker Finish
Season Date Official Race Name Winning Driver Car # Sponsor Make Distance Avg Speed Margin of Victory
1997 June 22 California 500 Jeff Gordon 24 DuPont Chevrolet Monte Carlo 500 mi Template:Convert/mi/hTemplate:Convert/test/Aon 1.074 sec
1998 May 3 California 500 presented by NAPA Mark Martin 6 Valvoline Ford Taurus 500 mi 140.22mi/h 1.287 sec
1999 May 2 California 500 presented by NAPA Jeff Gordon 24 DuPont Chevrolet Monte Carlo 500 mi 150.276mi/h 4.492 sec
2000 April 30 NAPA Auto Parts 500 Jeremy Mayfield 12 Mobil 1 Ford Taurus 500 mi 149.378mi/h 0.300 sec
2001 April 29 NAPA Auto Parts 500 Rusty Wallace 2 Miller Lite Ford Taurus 500 mi 143.118mi/h 0.27 sec
2002 April 28 NAPA Auto Parts 500 Jimmie Johnson 48 Lowes Chevrolet Monte Carlo 500 mi 150.088mi/h 0.620 sec
2003 April 27 Auto Club 500 Kurt Busch 97 Rubbermaid Ford Taurus 500 mi 140.111mi/h 2.294 sec
2004 May 2 Auto Club 500 Jeff Gordon 24 DuPont Chevrolet Monte Carlo 500 mi 137.268mi/h 12.871 sec
2004 September 5 Pop Secret 500 Elliott Sadler 38 M&Ms Ford Taurus 500 mi 128.324mi/h 0.263 sec
2005 February 27 Auto Club 500 Greg Biffle 16 Post-It/National Guard Ford Taurus 500 mi 139.697mi/h 0.231 sec
2005 September 4 Sony HD 500 Kyle Busch 5 Kelloggs Chevrolet Monte Carlo 508 mi * 136.356mi/h 0.554 sec
2006 February 26 Auto Club 500 Matt Kenseth 17 DeWalt Ford Fusion 502 mi * 147.852mi/h 0.338 sec
2006 September 3 Sony HD 500 Kasey Kahne 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Charger 500 mi 144.462mi/h 3.427 sec
2007 February 25 Auto Club 500 Matt Kenseth 17 DeWalt/Carhartt Ford Fusion 500 mi 138.451mi/h 0.679 sec
2007 September 2 Sharp AQUOS 500 Jimmie Johnson 48 Lowes Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS 500 mi 131.502mi/h 1.868 sec
2008 February 25 Auto Club 500 Carl Edwards 99 Dish Network Ford Fusion 500 mi 132.704mi/h UC
2008 August 31 Pepsi 500 Jimmie Johnson 48 Jimmie Johnson Foundation/Lowe's Chevrolet Impala 500 mi UC


External links

Auto Club Speedway during August 2008 Nationwide Series raceday

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