Watkins Glen International named Best NASCAR Track

This is the third straight win for the New York venue

For many racing enthusiasts, attending a NASCAR race is a bucket list event. The NASCAR Cup Series, Xfinity Series and Camping World Truck Series are hosted on 30 tracks scattered across the country.

  • Watkins Glen International
    Watkins Glen, N.Y.

    At one time the home of the F1 US Grand Prix, today Watkins Glen’s biggest race is its annual NASCAR date that sees its two top tier series competing on a double header weekend. The fast lefts and rights of this upstate New York have seen more than a few daring last lap moves and the “bus stop” on the back stretch is a legendary spot for intrepid drivers to make up time.
    Photo courtesy of Watkins Glen International

  • Texas Motor Speedway
    Fort Worth, Texas

    This wild western track at one time had the longest streak in NASCAR of no repeat winners and the race is still one of the most hotly contested races on the circuit. The track itself is plenty wide enough for racing in multiple lanes which makes late race charges to the front all the more likely and more than one race has ended in Texas with a come-from-behind victor holding the trophy six-shooters at the end of the day.
    Photo courtesy of Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images

  • Martinsville Speedway
    Ridgeway, Va.

    NASCAR’s oldest track has hosted races since the late 1940s, and while the racing surfaces have changed from dirt, to asphalt to a hybrid patchwork, the paperclip shaped short track, tucked away in southern Virginia, has never failed to be a high point in the NASCAR season. It is also one of the most important and harrowing races in NASCAR’s version of the playoffs: The Chase.
    Photo courtesy of Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

  • Bristol Motor Speedway
    Bristol, Tenn.

    Arguably the track that invented the concept of bullring style short track racing, Bristol is all about beating and banging to get the upper hand over the field. The formula here is as simple as it is effective. Throw out all the aero R&D, fuel mileage predictions and careful strategy because this track is all about having the muscle and will power necessary to make the guy in front of you move out of the way.
    Photo courtesy of Robert Laberge/Getty Images

  • Richmond Raceway
    Richmond, Va.

    Dubbed the perfect race track by multitudes of drivers and fans alike, Richmond Raceway’s 3/4 mile D-shaped configurations has the tight confines of a short track mixed with the multiple grooves and high speeds of a super speedway, and every race is held under the lights so fans can see the sparks fly and the brake rotors glow cherry red. Every show at Richmond is worth the price of admission.
    Photo courtesy of Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images

  • Charlotte Motor Speedway
    Concord, N.C.

    NASCAR has two homes. One lies on the beach at Daytona, but the other is far inland in the Charlotte area where most NASCAR teams are headquartered. The one and a half mile and very narrow Charlotte Motor Speedway hosts just as many event weekends as Daytona including the longest race of the year, the Coca-Cola 600, and the biggest payday of the year, the All-Star Race. And, to top it all off, the final event CMS holds is in the middle of the Chase.
    Photo courtesy of Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

  • Michigan International Speedway
    Brooklyn, Mich.

    The wide and fast eighteen degree banks of this two mile track are situated in the Irish Hills of Michigan, just a quick drive from the headquarters of GM and Ford in Detroit and Dearborn respectively. Ford backed teams have historically dominated the track, but in recent years GM and Toyota have edged their way into Ford’s territory and the race is as competitive as ever.
    Photo courtesy of Michigan International Speedway

  • ISM Raceway
    Avondale, Ariz.

    The mile-long, low-banked oval at ISM Raceway in Arizona hosts two NASCAR race weekends each year. A $178 million renovation in 2018 will include new and upgraded grandstands, as well as a a move of the start and finish line to Turn 2 for a more thrilling race experience.
    Photo courtesy of Matt Sullivan/Getty Images

  • Kansas Speedway
    Kansas City, Kan.

    Sitting on the Kansas side of Kansas City, this Midwest super speedway is a notoriously finicky track when it comes to how it reacts to weather and even more particular when it comes to fuel consumption. Many races have been won and lost due to crew chiefs’ predictions and one thing is for certain: if they haven’t figured this track out since it opened in 2001, they probably won’t any time soon.
    Photo courtesy of Sean Gardner/Getty Images

  • Dover International Speedway
    Dover, Del.

    The Monster Mile is what is called a “self cleaning track”. The banks are so high, even on the straights, that any wreck or mishap will inevitably wash downwards towards the apron of the track and the ensuing scramble to get out of the way at speeds approaching 180mph can cause massive pile-ups, which is of no small consequence when it hosts the third race of the Chase.
    Photo courtesy of Robert Laberge/Getty Images

The top 10 winners in the category Best NASCAR Track are as follows:

  1. Watkins Glen International - Watkins Glen, N.Y.
  2. Texas Motor Speedway - Fort Worth, Texas
  3. Martinsville Speedway - Ridgeway, Va.
  4. Bristol Motor Speedway - Bristol, Tenn.
  5. Richmond Raceway - Richmond, Va.
  6. Charlotte Motor Speedway - Concord, N.C.
  7. Michigan International Speedway - Brooklyn, Mich.
  8. ISM Raceway - Avondale, Ariz.
  9. Kansas Speedway - Kansas City, Kan.
  10. Dover International Speedway - Dover, Del.

A panel of experts partnered with 10Best editors to picked the initial 20 nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote. Experts Michelle R. Martinelli (USA TODAY's FTW) and Bridget Schuil (Motorsport Sisterhood) were chosen based on their knowledge of the U.S. motorsports scene.

Congratulations to all these winning race tracks!

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Michelle R. Martinelli

Michelle R. Martinelli

Bridget Schuil

Bridget Schuil