For the first time, the NASCAR Cup Series will be visiting World Wide Technology Raceway just outside St. Louis, Illinois for the Enjoy Illinois 300 presented by TicketSmarter this Sunday, June 5 at 3:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
World Wide Technology Raceway, located in Madison, Illinois, was originally built as a road course in 1985 and was known as St. Louis International Raceway Park. The road course was demolished in 1996 to make way for the 1.25-mile paved oval and accompanying drag strip that are still there today. The facility now has more than 700 acres welcoming fans this weekend.
Though this will be the inaugural NASCAR Cup Series event this weekend, World Wide Technology Raceway has hosted 15 NASCAR Xfinity Series races from 1997-2010 and 21 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races from 1998-2010 and 2014-2021.
In total, 24 drivers entered in this weekend’s NASCAR Cup Series race have experience in either the NASCAR Xfinity Series or NASCAR Camping World Truck Series at World Wide Technology Raceway. Nine different drivers have won in those series at World Wide Technology Raceway, led by Kevin Harvick with three NASCAR national series wins at the 1.25-mile track (NXS 2000, 2001 and NCWTS 2010); followed by Christopher Bell (NCWTS 2016), Kyle Busch (NXS 2009), Ross Chastain (NCWTS 2019), Cole Custer (NCWTS 2015), Justin Haley (NCWTS 2018), Brad Keselowski (NXS 2010), Martin Truex Jr. (NXS 2004) and Bubba Wallace (NCWTS 2014).
All the action begins this weekend with practice on Friday, June 3 at 5:05 p.m. – 5:55 p.m. ET (on FS1). Then Busch Light Pole Qualifying will be held on Saturday, June 4 at 11 a.m. ET on FS1.
NASCAR and Illinois have some history
Word Wide Technology Raceway will become the fourth different track the NASCAR Cup Series has competed on in the state of Illinois with this weekend’s Enjoy Illinois 300 presented by TicketSmarter this Sunday, June 5 at 3:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
The NASCAR Cup Series first competed in the state of Illinois on Saturday, July 10, 1954 at Santa Fe Speedway, a half-mile dirt track located in Willow Springs, IL. The event had 23 cars entered and was scheduled for 200 laps (100 miles). Dick Rathman won the race driving a 1954 Hudson for car owner John Ditz.
It wasn’t until two years later that the NASCAR Cup Series returned to the state of Illinois, only this time it was at the famous Soldier Field in Chicago. On July 21, 1956, the NASCAR Cup Series saw 25 cars compete at the half-mile paved track inside the stadium for 200 laps (100 miles). The race was won by NASCAR Hall of Famer Fireball Roberts driving a Ford for car owner Pete DePaolo.
The NASCAR Cup Series has also competed at Chicagoland Speedway from 2001-2019 for 19 races.
In total, there have been 97 NASCAR national series races in the state of Illinois among five different tracks. The NASCAR Cup Series has made 21 starts in the state of Illinois.
Breakdown of the NASCAR National Series races in Illinois (All-Time)
|Track Name||City||Cup||Xfinity||Truck||Combined||First Year|
|World Wide Technology Raceway||Madison||0||15||21||36||1997|
|Chicago Motor Speedway||Cicero||0||0||2||2||2000|
|Santa Fe Speedway||Willow Springs||1||0||0||1||1954|
Confluence Festival a nice weekend addition for fans at WWTR
This weekend’s inaugural NASCAR Cup Series race, the Enjoy Illinois 300 presented by TicketSmarter at World Wide Technology Raceway, will be accompanied by the Confluence Festival, a showcase of innovation, talent and live entertainment that represents the region’s communities coming together in welcoming NASCAR to World Wide Technology Raceway. Live performances will begin at the Ballpark Village Fan Fest presented by Enterprise on Thursday, June 2, and will continue all weekend.
In addition to live music, several interactive STEM activities including RaceAR – featuring first-of-its-kind augmented reality race simulations developed by World Wide Technology – will be demonstrated on the Midway. Community youth programs will also showcase robotics, karting and STEM through hands-on activities.
“St. Louis is making history with the Enjoy Illinois 300 NASCAR Cup Series race weekend – a spectacular, must-see four-day celebration for our region,” said David L. Steward, Founder and Chairman of World Wide Technology. “When not cheering for the world’s best drivers, fans will enjoy several genres of live music and activities that showcase technology and innovation, reflecting our goal of making World Wide Technology Raceway the most tech‑forward track, entertainment and education venue in racing.”
Surprise live entertainment announcements are still to come, but the lineup currently includes:
- Old Dominion
- Cole Swindell
- Jimmie Allen
- Kameron Marlowe
- Dee Jay Silver
- Alexandra Kay
- Tim Dugger
- River Kittens
- The Steve Ewing Band
- Dr. Zhivegas
- Joe Dirt & The Dirty Boys
- Marquise Knox
- Saint Boogie Brass Band
- DJ Mahf
- Red and Black Brass Band
- Lamar Harris
- Michael B. Whit
- Malena Smith
- FanFare (World Wide Technology employee band)
- Special performances by The Muny, St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, Jazz St. Louis and The Sheldon; featuring: Kennedy Holmes, Keyon Harrold, Brian Owens, Jean Baylor and Shedrick Mitchell