The Untold Story: Bill France Sr.’s Second Super Speedway

Bill France Sr. is a name that is synonymous with NASCAR and the world of motorsports. However, few know the story of his second super speedway, which was built after the success of the Daytona International Speedway.

The second super speedway was a major milestone in the history of NASCAR, and it played a crucial role in the sport’s evolution. It was a massive undertaking that involved overcoming significant challenges and obstacles.

In this article, we will explore the untold story of Bill France Sr.’s second super speedway, from its conception to its impact on the world of racing. We will dive into the history of NASCAR, the construction of the speedway, and the legacy that Bill France Sr. left behind.

Get ready to discover a side of NASCAR that you never knew existed. Join us as we journey through the incredible story of Bill France Sr.’s second super speedway.

How Bill France Sr. revolutionized the racing world

Bill France Sr. was a visionary who transformed the world of racing forever. His contributions to the sport of NASCAR are immeasurable, and his impact can still be felt today. Through his leadership and innovation, France revolutionized racing and created a culture that celebrates speed, passion, and competition.

France’s most significant contribution to the racing world was the creation of NASCAR. He saw a need for a national organization that could bring together drivers, track owners, and fans from across the country. He wanted to create a platform where drivers could showcase their skills and compete against the best in the world.

The birth of NASCAR

  • Racing Legends: The early days of NASCAR were filled with iconic names like Richard Petty, Dale Earnhardt, and Jeff Gordon, who went on to become some of the greatest drivers of all time.

  • The Daytona 500: The Daytona 500, which France founded in 1959, quickly became the most prestigious race in NASCAR and one of the biggest events in all of sports.

  • The NASCAR Hall of Fame: The NASCAR Hall of Fame, which opened in 2010, celebrates the history and culture of the sport and honors its greatest drivers, crew chiefs, and contributors.

The impact of France’s innovations

France’s innovations went far beyond the creation of NASCAR. He also pioneered new safety measures, including the development of the “SAFER Barrier,” which has saved countless lives in racing accidents. He also introduced new technology, such as electronic scoring and the use of pace cars to control the speed of the race.

The legacy of Bill France Sr.

  • The France Family: France’s sons and grandsons continue to play prominent roles in NASCAR today, carrying on his legacy and ensuring that the sport continues to grow and evolve.

  • The Future of NASCAR: France’s vision for NASCAR was to create a sport that would be enjoyed by generations of fans, and his legacy lives on through the millions of people who continue to tune in to races every year.

Bill France Sr.’s contributions to the racing world were nothing short of remarkable. His vision, leadership, and innovation transformed NASCAR from a regional pastime to a global phenomenon. His legacy will continue to inspire and shape the sport for generations to come.

The birth of NASCAR and the Daytona 500

Bill France Sr. had a vision for stock car racing. In 1947, he began organizing a meeting of race promoters at the Streamline Hotel in Daytona Beach, Florida. This meeting was the catalyst for the formation of the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing, better known as NASCAR. France saw the potential of bringing together various regional racing series and creating a unified national championship.

One of the most important events in NASCAR’s history is the Daytona 500. The inaugural race was held in 1959 and marked the opening of the newly built Daytona International Speedway. The Daytona 500 quickly became the most prestigious race on the NASCAR schedule and a must-see event for racing fans. The race has since become synonymous with NASCAR, and its popularity has only grown over the years.

The early days of NASCAR

  • The first NASCAR Strictly Stock race was held on June 19, 1949, at Charlotte Speedway in North Carolina. The race was won by Jim Roper, driving a Lincoln.
  • In the early days, most races were held on dirt tracks, which required a different style of driving than the asphalt tracks that are now the norm in NASCAR.
  • As NASCAR grew in popularity, it began to attract big-name sponsors, such as Coca-Cola and Pepsi.

The rise of the Daytona 500

The Daytona 500 has played a pivotal role in NASCAR’s success. Here are some key moments in the race’s history:

  • In 1960, Junior Johnson won the race in a car that was found to have an oversized engine. He was stripped of the win and awarded second place, but the controversy only added to the race’s mystique.
  • In 1979, the Daytona 500 was broadcast live on national television for the first time. The dramatic finish, which saw Richard Petty and Cale Yarborough crash on the final lap, helped to catapult NASCAR into the mainstream.

The legacy of NASCAR and the Daytona 500

Today, NASCAR is a multi-billion-dollar industry, with millions of fans tuning in to races each year. The Daytona 500 remains one of the most important events on the NASCAR calendar and a symbol of the sport’s rich history. Bill France Sr.’s vision for a unified national championship has been realized, and NASCAR has become a true American institution.

The challenges faced during the construction of the second super speedway

The construction of the second super speedway was an ambitious project that presented several challenges. The location for the track was decided to be in Alabama, and the project was to be spearheaded by William France Sr., the founder of NASCAR. The construction of the track began in 1968 and was completed in 1970, but the journey was not without its difficulties.

One of the biggest challenges faced was the soil quality of the area. The soil was too soft, and the track would sink if built directly on it. The solution was to excavate the topsoil and replace it with stronger clay that would provide a solid foundation for the track. This was a costly and time-consuming process, but it was necessary to ensure the safety and stability of the track.

Engineering challenges

  • The steep banking angle of the track was another major challenge. The angle was set at 33 degrees, making it the steepest in NASCAR history. Engineers had to develop new techniques to create a surface that could withstand the extreme speeds and force of the cars while still providing enough grip for drivers.
  • The high speeds and tight turns of the track also posed a challenge for the design of the grandstands. Spectators needed an unobstructed view of the entire track, but the grandstands had to be angled in such a way as to provide protection from debris in the event of a crash.

Environmental challenges

The construction of the track also had an impact on the environment. The excavation and replacement of soil disrupted the natural ecosystem of the area. Additionally, the track’s location was in close proximity to the Talladega National Forest, which raised concerns about the impact of the noise pollution on wildlife.

Financial challenges

The construction of the second super speedway was a massive undertaking, and the cost was exorbitant. It was estimated to cost $4 million initially, but the final cost was closer to $7 million. The project was financed by private investors and loans, and the financial burden was a significant challenge for France and his team.

Behind-the-scenes of the grand opening and first race

In 1959, the Daytona International Speedway held its grand opening, marking the completion of a two-and-a-half-year construction project. The inaugural race was the Daytona 500, which is now considered one of the most prestigious races in NASCAR history. Behind the glamour and excitement of the race, there were many challenges and setbacks that the construction team faced to make it all possible.

One of the biggest challenges the construction team faced was the project’s tight deadline. The team had only 18 months to complete the massive project, which included designing and building the track, grandstands, garages, and other facilities from scratch. Additionally, the team had to deal with the harsh Florida weather, including hurricanes and heavy rainfalls, which often delayed construction progress.

The track design

  • The Daytona International Speedway‘s track design was a significant engineering feat, involving the creation of 31-degree high-banked turns, which allowed drivers to achieve greater speeds on the straightaways.
  • The construction team used over 3.2 million cubic yards of earth to build the track, which included a layer of limestone, asphalt, and concrete, to create a durable surface that could withstand the high speeds of the racecars.

Facility construction

The Daytona International Speedway also required the construction of several facilities to support the race, including grandstands, garages, and medical facilities. One of the most significant structures was the 101,000-seat grandstand, which provided spectators with a clear view of the entire track.

  • The garages were also a critical component of the speedway, providing a workspace for the teams to work on the racecars during the event.
  • The medical facilities were also an essential part of the speedway, providing medical care to drivers and spectators in case of any emergencies.

The first Daytona 500 race

The first Daytona 500 race was held on February 22, 1959, and attracted over 40,000 spectators. The race was won by Lee Petty, who crossed the finish line just ahead of Johnny Beauchamp in a controversial photo finish.

  • The success of the inaugural Daytona 500 race put the speedway on the map and established it as a premier destination for motorsports enthusiasts.
  • The construction of the Daytona International Speedway set a new standard for racetracks, with its innovative track design and state-of-the-art facilities, which have since become a model for other tracks around the world.

The impact of the second super speedway on racing history

The construction of the second super speedway was a turning point in the history of racing. It was a project that revolutionized the sport, bringing it to new heights and changing the way people viewed racing forever.

The construction of the second super speedway was no easy task. It was a massive project that required a tremendous amount of effort, skill, and dedication from everyone involved. From the engineers and architects who designed the track to the workers who built it, everyone played a vital role in its success.

Increased popularity

The second super speedway had a significant impact on the popularity of racing. It brought the sport to a new level of excitement, attracting more fans than ever before. The speedway’s grandstands were always filled to capacity, with fans from all over the country coming to witness the high-speed thrills of the races.

The impact of the second super speedway was felt not only in the United States but also around the world. The track was host to some of the most prestigious races in the world, including the Daytona 500, which has become one of the most iconic races in racing history.

Advancements in technology

The construction of the second super speedway led to many advancements in racing technology. Engineers and designers were forced to push the limits of what was possible, developing new and innovative technologies that allowed cars to go faster and handle better than ever before.

  • Aerodynamics: With speeds reaching up to 200 mph, cars needed to be designed to cut through the air more efficiently. This led to advancements in aerodynamics, with cars now sporting sleek, streamlined designs that reduce drag and improve handling.
  • Safety: The high speeds of racing also posed a significant risk to drivers. To mitigate this risk, engineers developed new safety features such as roll cages, fire suppression systems, and impact-absorbing materials that have helped to save countless lives over the years.


The second super speedway has left a lasting legacy on racing history. Its impact on the sport can still be seen today, with many of the technologies and safety features developed for the track still in use. The track has also been the site of some of the most iconic moments in racing history, from photo-finishes to epic crashes.

The legacy of the second super speedway will continue to be felt for generations to come. It was a project that changed the sport of racing forever and one that will always be remembered as a testament to the power of human ingenuity and determination.

The legacy of Bill France Sr. and his contributions to motorsports

Bill France Sr., the founder of NASCAR, is one of the most influential figures in motorsports history. Born in 1909 in Washington, D.C., France Sr. moved to Daytona Beach, Florida, in 1934, where he became involved in the racing community. Over the next several decades, he worked tirelessly to elevate the sport of stock car racing, leading to the creation of NASCAR in 1948.

France Sr.’s contributions to the sport were numerous and wide-ranging, from establishing standard rules and regulations to building racetracks and developing the sport’s television presence. Today, NASCAR is a multi-billion dollar industry that attracts millions of fans around the world, and much of its success can be traced back to France Sr.’s vision and leadership.

The creation of NASCAR

France Sr.’s decision to create NASCAR in 1948 was a pivotal moment in the sport’s history. The organization provided a structure and framework for stock car racing, allowing drivers to compete on a more even playing field and providing a clear path to success for those with talent and dedication. NASCAR quickly became the premier stock car racing organization in the United States, and today it is one of the most popular and successful motorsports series in the world.

Building racetracks

France Sr. also played a key role in building many of the racetracks that have become synonymous with NASCAR, including the Daytona International Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway. These tracks were designed to showcase the speed and power of stock car racing, and they continue to provide some of the most thrilling and exciting racing in the world today.

Developing the sport’s television presence

Finally, France Sr. was instrumental in developing NASCAR’s television presence, which helped to popularize the sport and bring it to a wider audience. Under his leadership, NASCAR became one of the first sports to embrace television, and he worked tirelessly to secure broadcast deals and promote the sport through the media. Today, NASCAR races are broadcast in over 185 countries around the world, reaching millions of fans and continuing France Sr.’s legacy as one of the most important figures in motorsports history.

What Was The Second Super Speedway Bill France Sr Built?

When was the second super speedway built?

The second super speedway built by Bill France Sr was constructed in 1970.

Where was the second super speedway located?

The second super speedway was built in Alabama, United States.

What was the name of the second super speedway?

The second super speedway built by Bill France Sr was named Talladega Superspeedway.

What is the length of the Talladega Superspeedway?

The Talladega Superspeedway is 2.66 miles in length.

What is the banking degree of the Talladega Superspeedway?

The Talladega Superspeedway has a banking degree of 33 degrees in the turns.

What is the capacity of the Talladega Superspeedway?

The Talladega Superspeedway has a seating capacity of 80,000 spectators and an additional 200,000 infield capacity.

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