Where Is Seekonk Speedway? [Expert Guide!]

Well, if you’re reading this, chances are you already know where Seekonk Speedway is… but just in case, let’s talk about it.

Seekonk Speedway is an auto-racing track in Rumford, Massachusetts. Rumford is a small city just east of Boston. If you’ve never been there, it’s time to visit – especially since it’s the last Friday in July, which is International Track Day!

Rumford is home to several historic sports venues, including the Williams Evert Cup Speedometer, where auto-racing competitions are held. The Williams Evert Cup was named after Teddy Williams, who owned a chain of automobile dealerships that eventually became the modern-day Dick Lee Buick GMC Cadillac dealership. A trophy named after him still adorns the wall at the speedway today. That’s right – the whole city is named after a car dealer!

One of the more historic tracks in the area is the New England Motor Speedway. The first track was built in 1924, and over the years it’s hosted some of the most important races in American motorsport history like the 1950s Milwaukee Mile and the 1967 Indianapolis 500. This is also where NASCAR was born, holding its first race here in 1949. Several of today’s top tier drivers like Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt, and Rusty Wallace have called this track home.

Another important track in the area is the Boston Road Race track. This is one of the earliest professional sports venues still in use today. The first track was built in 1907 and was originally called the Boston Street Race. Today, it’s one of the most prestigious road courses in North America, hosting several events including the Massachusetts State Police Motorcycle Grand Prix and the Firecracker 400 NASCAR race. In 2011, the Boston Road Race track was the site of one of the most famous crashes in NASCAR history, when Danica Patrick suffered a broken leg during the Coke Zero 400. That race was postponed to September, six months later, due to the public health suspension of the then-ongoing state of Massachusetts.

It’s not just racing that lives at Seekonk Speedway. Like I said, it’s a hub for sports. The Trackside Grille, which serves as the drivers’ pitlane and media center, is a historic sports eatery that dates back to the 1960s. Over the years, it’s hosted everything from press conferences to birthday parties for important drivers. If you’re a motorsport fan, it’s a must-see.

Top Gear: A Timeline of Events

Now that we’ve covered the location a bit, it’s time to take a trip down memory lane and retrace some of the most important events that has occurred at the track over the years.

In 2009, the track underwent a major renovation and rebranding that changed the way we experience modern-day auto racing. As part of the rebranding, the track went from being called Seekonk Speedway to becoming simply, “Seekonk.” New signage and a completely redesigned grandstand were added to the track, making it look more like a modern-day racetrack. The renovations also allowed the track to host more racing events, holding its first practice session on July 30th and its first actual race on August 27th. The renovation also brought with it new rules and regulations, which have streamlined the way drivers and teams can approach the sport.

1971: The First International Formula 5000 Race

In 1971, the International Formula 5000 race was held at the nearby New England Motor Speedway. The top 3 finishers were: Jochen Rindt – for the Cooper team; Niki Lauda – for the Ferrari team; and Jackie Stewart – for the Matra team. Rindt won by 1 minute and 45 seconds, which was a new F1 world record.

1979: The Last V8 Race At The New England Motor Speedway

In the summer of 1979, the New England Motor Speedway was the site of one of the most important races in its history. The track had decided to drop down to five cylinders as a cost-cutting measure, resulting in the 1979 V8 engine race. The race was a hit, drawing a crowd of over 50,000 fans to the grandstands. This was more than enough to make up for the fact that most of the drivers were at a loss as to what 5-cylinder engines were doing on the track. The problem was the cars were all driven by Muffin Masters – professional bakeries that bought them from local bakeries and modified them to look like race cars. The bakers had to improvise a whole lot, as there was no set of rules for the unique competition. The race even inspired the naming of a cup at the track, which is still contested today: The Muffin Cup. This annual competition is one of the most popular events at the track, and it’s been going strong ever since.

1996: The First Race At The New Bedford Harbor Speedway

The New Bedford harbor Speedway was the first of a a series of short tracks that were built around New England in the 1990s. The speedway was originally built to be the sister track to the New England Motor Speedway. The first event there was the 1996 World Grand Prix race, won by Ayrton Senna. Since then, the New Bedford harbor Speedway has held several important races, including the prestigious World Sports Car race. The most recent race there was the Firecracker 400 at the end of July, which was won by Jimmie Johnson.

2007: The Race that Redefined the NASCAR Season

If you ask most people today where they’ll spend the most amount of time during the NASCAR season, it’ll probably be at a race track. That’s because the sport’s biggest event, the Daytona 500, had decided to adopt a new format for the 2007 season. The new format called for the season finale to be held at a racetrack, instead of a football field as usual. So after months of campaigning and speculation, the NASCAR season finale (that is, the Daytona 500) was held at the Daytona International Speedway, and it was a sell-out. Due to high demand, the event was moved to a Saturday, which made it easier for fans to attend. The new format was a major hit, and in 2008, it was implemented for the entire NASCAR season. Since then, holding the season finale at a racetrack has become the norm for the sport.

2013: Jimmy John’s Fastest Lap Of The Year

In 2013, Jimmy John’s was the official fast-food of NASCAR, and they promoted this fact by sponsoring several cars and drivers. Jimmy John’s #99 team driver, Matt Kenseth, won the opening race of the season, the Daytona 500, and went on to win the next three races as well. This made him the winningest active driver at that point, passing Dale Earnhardt Sr. The team repeated this performance, winning six out of seven total races that season. Unfortunately, the streak came to an end at the end of July, when Kenseth suffered a leg injury at the Kansas City Star Track. He was sidelined for several weeks, but returned to win the Brickyard 400 in September. Unfortunately, the 2013 season was one of the most tragic years in modern-day NASCAR, as three of its top drivers – Kevin Harvick, Jeff Gordon, and Sam Hornish – all died during the season.

2014: The Return Of The Big Three

In 2014, NASCAR’s biggest stars were back, but not in the way you might expect. Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Gordon, and Greg Biffle, had all announced that they would be competing in the full Monster Energy NASCAR Cup schedule, returning to the sport after years of absence. This was the first time that all three had competed in the same season since 2001. It was a historic moment, as the trio became known as “the Big Three.” Unfortunately, their great comeback was not all good, as none of them could replicate their championship-winning performances of the previous two years. The three won only two races between them and were overshadowed by other stars like Carl Edwards, Joey Logano, and Kevin Harvick, who won 11, 10, and 9 races respectively. This was a major disappointment for the entire sport, as fans had been waiting for the return of the Big Three for years.

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