NASCAR set to end a 65-year hiatus this weekend

Chase Elliott, JR Motorsports, NASCAR, Road America (Photo by Jonathan Moore/Getty Images)
Chase Elliott, JR Motorsports, NASCAR, Road America (Photo by Jonathan Moore/Getty Images) /

Road America is not a new track on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule, but it hasn’t hosted a top-level NASCAR race in more than six decades.

A record seven road course races are on the 36-race 2021 NASCAR Cup Series schedule, and the fourth of those seven road course races is scheduled to take place this weekend at Road America.

Despite the fact that the 2020 season only saw two road course races and the most any recent season prior to 2020 had seen was three, only two of these seven road courses are truly “new” to NASCAR’s highest level of competition.

Must Read. Dale Earnhardt Jr. still annoys Martin Truex Jr.. light

The Daytona International Speedway road course led things off on Sunday, February 21 as the replacement for Auto Club Speedway due to COVID-19-related restrictions. This track has still never been on an initial Cup Series schedule, but it also hosted a race last August as the replacement for Watkins Glen International for the same reason.

Watkins Glen International, like Sonoma Raceway, returned to this year’s schedule after being wiped off the 2020 calendar due to restrictions.

More from NASCAR Cup Series

Watkins Glen International is scheduled to host its race on Sunday, August 8 while Sonoma Raceway already hosted its race on Sunday, June 6.

The Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval, which has hosted one race each year since 2018, was the only road course on the initial 2020 schedule which hosted a race in 2020, and it returned in 2021 as expected. It is scheduled to host a race on Sunday, October 10. Circuit of the Americas had never hosted any NASCAR race prior to May when it hosted all three national series, and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, which is scheduled to host a Cup Series race on Sunday, August 15, has only ever hosted an Xfinity Series race, with that event having taken place last year.

The other “new” road course on this year’s Cup Series schedule, however, isn’t truly “new”, thanks to one Sunday afternoon back in 1956.

That track is Road America, which is scheduled to host the Jockey Made in America 250 Presented by Kwik Trip tomorrow afternoon.

This 62-lap race around the 14-turn, 4.048-mile (6.515-kilometer) natural terrain road course in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin is set to be the second race at the track. The first — and only — race there was contested nearly 65 years ago on Sunday, August 12, 1956.

Road America has, however, hosted the Xfinity Series in each of the last 11 years going back to 2010, and it is set to do so again this afternoon with the Henry 180.

Next. Top 25 NASCAR drivers of all-time. dark

Tune in to NBC at 2:30 p.m. ET tomorrow afternoon for the live broadcast of the 2021 Jockey Made in America 250 Presented by Kwik Trip from Road America.