Speedway Motorsports officials have decided that NASCAR teams will run the 3.41-mile course layout during their inaugural race weekend at Circuit of The Americas next season.
The decision was made citing “an unforgettable experience for fans and an incredible challenge for drivers.” It is the same course layout Formula 1 teams use when competing at COTA.
All three NASCAR national series will visit the famed course for the first time in 2021. Race weekend is scheduled for May 21-23.
“We took a hard look at both the 3.41-mile long course and the newly reconfigured 2.2-mile short course,” said Speedway Motorsports President and CEO Marcus Smith, whose company is putting on the event. “There’s no doubt the long course will be the most entertaining for the fans. There are more sightlines and opportunities for hillside viewing, plus we’ll have additional options for trackside camping. Every NASCAR driver will be challenged by the same 20-turn, counterclockwise circuit designed for Formula 1 races.”
In preparation for NASCAR action, officials are making necessary changes and additions to the facility.
Rumble strips seen on the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval and Daytona road course will be added (they will be the same ones from Charlotte). Additional tire barriers will be added to high-impact areas, while the pit road wall will be extended and additional caution lights and timing and scoring loops installed to support stock cars and trucks.
“Circuit of The Americas is already a world-class, world-renowned facility,” said Smith. “Along with NASCAR, we now have to make a few safety and competition enhancements to accommodate the Camping World Trucks, Xfinity, and Cup Series.
“Every effort will be made to make the first NASCAR weekend an experience like no other for both fans and competitors.”