Top 5 Races to Check out During the Summer
The summer season is also race season for the majority of American motorsports fans, and there’s no shortage of intense competition to check out on tracks both big and small once the warmer weather hits. Which dates should you have circled on your calendar during the upcoming months? Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered with this list of the top 5 races you need to check out during the summer.
- Daytona International Speedway
Want to sample the pomp and circumstance that is NASCAR’s most famous track, but can’t make it out to Florida in February for the Daytona 500? Make it your 4th of July destination instead, as the 2.5-mile tri-oval hosts a blow-out race every year on the weekend that celebrates American independence. The name of the race might change from season to season, but the atmosphere provided by the more than 100,000 fans who gather at the track remains a constant, even in an era where NASCAR has begun to fade from the pop culture consciousness. As a bonus, tickets for the summer race are typically much more affordable than they are for the earlier 500.
- Indianapolis 500
How could we mention Daytona without also bringing up America’s other marquee track, and perhaps the most famous race on the calendar of motorsports fans across the country? The Indianapolis 500 kicks off summer with its Memorial Day spectacle of top-notch open wheel racing, and it remains a cultural touchstone that crosses boundaries and draws some of the sport’s biggest names, regardless of which series they earn a paycheck from. It’s a great opportunity to touch racing history while watching the world’s best drivers gather together for a winner-takes-all weekend.
- NHRA Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals
Wait, Indianapolis again? That’s right, only with a twist: this time, instead of the Brickyard, the action takes place at the Lucas Oil Raceway in one of the most anticipated drag races of the season. Closing out the summer with a Labor Day blowout, the U.S. Nationals have been running at Indy since 1961 and it’s your chance to see the entire spectrum of top-tier drag racing – including Top Fuel, Funny Car, and Pro Stock – face off for one of the richest prizes on the NHRA calendar.
- Motul FIM Superbike World Championship GEICO U.S. Round featuring MotoAmerica at Laguna Seca
Yeah, that’s a real mouthful to say, but all you need to know is that this coming July 7-9 the world’s best motorcycle racers descend on perhaps the most notorious road course in the country to duke it out from the Andretti hairpin to the vertical drop of the corkscrew. Two-wheeled racing rarely gets better than what you’ll see at Laguna Seca, a facility that has been host to countless classic races and their respective champions and which is nestled in the hills surrounding the gorgeous Monterey peninsula in northern California.
- Pirelli World Challenge at COTA
Would you rather spend Labor Day watching cars turn corners instead of blast down at straight line at 300-mph? No worries – Circuit of the Americas has got you covered with a September 2-3 installment of the Pirelli World Challenge. Grand Touring cars ranging from Lamborghinis to Porsches to Ferraris to Corvettes duke it out across several different classes for glory, bragging rights, and all-important sponsorship deals in what is the closest you can get to near-stock racing on the modern stage. Plus you get to sample the amazing food and music of nearby Austin, Texas at the same time, so at the end of the day it’s a win on the track and for your ears and stomach.