How Long Is The Bristol Motor Speedway Track? [Expert Review!]

Bristol Motor Speedway is located in Bristol, Tennessee. The track is best known for hosting the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and the IndyCar Series. The track has a grandstand above the Turn 1 grandstand which, as the name implies, is the spot where the cars turn around after completing a lap. The overall length of the track is 1.25 miles (2.02km).

Turn 1

This is where the cars begin their lap and the spot where they make a 180-degree turn. The track’s surface is very bumpy and, therefore, very slow. The first turn has three distinct parts:

  • The first is a very wide part with a grass infield and a paved outer loop. The inner part of the track is also paved. The area in front of the grandstands is open.
  • The second is a second-wide part. The inner, paved area of the track is very bumpy and slow. There is no parking lot in this area. However, there is a walkway that goes around the track.
  • The third is the straightaway. There is a guardrail on either side of the track.


There is a short pit lane that connects the first and second turns. The road to the pits is called the Hangar Parkway and is marked with yellow and black chevrons on the pavement. The chevrons point to the pit lane. The area in front of the grandstands is also checkered to make it easier for the drivers to spot the checkered flag (red, white, and blue). The cars’ wings also have chevrons on them to help the drivers spot one another on the track.

The Track Goes Around The Clock

Once the cars turn around at the end of the first lap, they begin heading in a clockwise fashion around a one-mile lap. The entire track has two lanes marked with white lines and a center line. As already mentioned, there is also a dividing white line between the infield and the outer area. The only rule is that the cars have to stay on the track!

The clockwise direction of the track is easy to follow because the checkered flag is in the center of the track. Therefore, all the cars are heading toward the same point as the checkered flag — regardless of where they started their lap. At the end of a one-mile lap, the cars will pass under a grandstand on the backstretch to complete a full lap before entering the infield for the final time.

The Finish Line

The checkered flag is at the end of the backstretch. Therefore, it is the spot where the cars complete a lap. There are many cameras along the backstretch to catch the cars’ spectacular final moments before crossing the line.

The grandstand on the backstretch has a seating capacity of 12,500 spectators. Most of these spectators are on the front row which is on the same level as the track. The track’s surface is such that when cars reach the end of the backstretch, they immediately start sliding toward the center or the start-finish line. This makes for a very exciting finish because the entire crowd can enjoy the show from the first lap to the last!

Bristol Motor Speedway is one of the most historic venues in all of motorsport. The track first opened its doors in July of 1949 and has been the site of some very memorable races ever since. In 2017 alone, the track hosted the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and the IndyCar Series. There is a great deal of history at Bristol Motor Speedway. If you’ve never been there, it’s time to visit!

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