Motorsport in Florida

Florida is known for its theme parks, warm weather and its thrill a minute environment. The Sunshine State is also a hot place to visit for motorsport enthusiasts as it is home to some of the most important events in the world.

Perhaps one of the most famous races is the Daytona 500, otherwise known as “The Great American Race.” The Daytona 500 usually takes place at Daytona International Speedway at Daytona Beach in February each year and it is the place where 43 of the very best stock car drivers in the world take center stage as they compete in NASCAR’s biggest richest and most prestigious race. The race is 500 miles long and is the opening race in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

Daytona International Speedway is also home to many other racing events such as the Camping World Truck series for pickup trucks, the Nationwide Series and the Pepsi 400.

Located in the orange groves and cattle ranches of Central Florida is Sebring International Raceway. Sebring is considered America’s premier sports car racing facility by many and is the oldest permanent road racing track in North America. Its most famous race is the annual 12 Hours of Sebring endurance race which is part of the prestigious American Le Mans Series. Every year on the third Saturday of March, the raceway hosts thousands of race fans from around the world to witness the historic 12 hour classic. Many motor racing legends have raced at Sebring; Mario Andretti, A.J. Foyt, Dan Gurney, Stirling Moss, Juan Manuel Fangio and dozens of other international motor racing legends, who have driven some of the fastest race cars built by the world’s top manufacturers such as Ferrari, Porsche, Jaguar, Audi, Ford, Maserati, Aston Martin and Nissan.

If you’re looking for Florida’s fastest 1/8 of a mile then you’ll want to visit Lakeland Dragstrip. This is where you’ll find drag racing at its best as all types of vehicles and bikes are put through their paces.

For those wanting to get involved in the action then Walt Disney World Resort has the Richard Petty Experience and this is where you can drive or ride shotgun in true NASCAR-style stock cars which achieve speeds of up to 120mph.

One of the most complete motor sport facilities is The European Rally School & Motorsport Park, based in North Central Florida. They have many different courses to satisfy all tastes. Whether you are in to rallying, high performance driving, ATV, SUV, 4×4, or karting, this place has you covered.

Orlando Speedworld plays host to numerous events throughout the year. Along with the FASCAR Weekly Racing Series, OSW is also home to CRASH-A-RAMA, STUNT WARS, and the annual INEX/600 Racing Winter Nationals.

The FASCAR Weekly Racing Series includes Super Late Models, Limited Late Models, Modifieds, Pro-Trucks and Sportsman that run on a rotating schedule, along with the Super Stocks and Strictly Stocks, which can be seen every Friday night throughout the season.

So, as you can see, if it’s speed you want, there’s plenty of it in Central Florida to thrill and excite you.

Footnote: Indulge me here… this is the motorsport I loved to take part in … and for those of you not familiar with rallying…here’s some in car action with the late Colin McRae in Ireland…

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