NASCAR to run full course at Circuit of the Americas in 2021
Speedway Motorsports has announced that Circuit of the Americas’ traditional 3.41-mile circuit will be used for all competition during its inaugural NASCAR weekend on May 21-23, 2021.
The 20-turn layout annually hosts Formula One’s United States Grand Prix and MotoGP’s Grand Prix of the Americas.
It has also previously held races for the NTT IndyCar Series, IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, and FIA World Endurance Championship.
A133-foot climb up the front stretch to Turn One serves as its signature feature.
“We took a hard look at both the 3.41-mile long course and the newly reconfigured 2.2-mile short course,” Speedway Motorsports President and CEO Marcus Smith said in a release. “There’s no doubt the long course will be the most entertaining for the fans.
“There are more sight lines 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 One racers.”
Photo Credit: Circuit of the Americas
Following a practice day on Friday, May 21, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and Xfinity Series will both race on Saturday, May 22. The Cup Series races on Sunday, May 23.
IMSA’s Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America series is also part of the weekend. That series will run two races - one on Saturday, the other on Sunday.
In the same release, Speedway Motorsports also confirmed that it will make “select changes” to the course in order to accommodate all three NASCAR national series.
Plans include the installation of rumble strips (‘the turtles’) from the Charlotte Motor Speedway roval to select corners at COTA, so drivers can’t use the track’s expansive asphalt runoffs to help them get around.
Operations crews will also place tire packs at potential high-impact areas, extend the pit road wall, and install additional caution lights and timing/scoring loops.