North Wilkesboro Speedway

North Wilkesboro, NC

Category Former Cup
Type Short Track
Configuration Oval
Length .625 mile
Characteristics Turns Banking 14
Track Record Ernie Ervan 119.016 mph (1994)
Capacity 40,000
Notes DOA (1947-1996)

North Wilkesboro Speedway

NR2K3 Versions

Version: North Wilkesboro N2K2

Track Record(s) (GS) Cup - Michael Waltrip 19.58
Max Field 43
NR2K3 Author(s) A Noonan conversion

Version: North Wilkesboro 1970

Track Record(s) (GS) Cup - Michael Waltrip 19.58
CTS - Mike Bliss 21.99
Max Field 43
NR2K3 Author(s) Wrangler / Rioux
Notes Retro and I like it

Version: North Wilkesboro 2004

Track Record(s) (GS) Cup - Michael Waltrip 19.58
CTS - Mike Bliss 21.99
Max Field 43
NR2K3 Author(s) Wrangler3, Steve B.
Notes What if version

Version: North Wilkesboro_WR

Track Record(s) (GS) Cup - Michael Waltrip 19.58
CTS - Mike Bliss 21.99
Max Field 43
NR2K3 Author(s) Wrangler
Notes 2-Groove version

Version: North Wilkesboro SRC 06

Track Record(s) NA
Max Field 41
NR2K3 Author(s) Justin9, steveb73, sticky22, raybee1970, Bowtie, JR Franklin
Author Web Presence SRC Community at NR2K3Tracks
Notes Wilkes painted and patched
Day & Night versions

Save The Speedway

Yeah, I signed the petition. So did Kenny Wallace. Do I have any expectations? Nope, none. I can't even find the petition now, half the links on the Save The Speedway site are "under construction". Pretty much dead in the water. The two track co-owners bought it to take it out of the Nascar schedule and get their own tracks in (Bob Bahre, owner New Hampshire Speedway and Bruton Smith, owner Texax Speedway and others). Follow the links at the bottom to get the full story. Each owner has seemingly blamed the other for the idle condition of the track. Personally I don't believe either one ever had any intentions of keeping racing alive at this Nascar icon; they were both chasing much bigger paydays elsewhere. Of course they weren't going to help anyone else make a go of it either. Bruton Smith actually said that he would have spent restoration money and brought it back to life if Bahre would have sold him his half. Is that a child or what? If I can't have it all then I won't let anyone use it.

I published some links in the North Carolina Speedway article that give you a clue if you're asking "How do you really feel about Bruton Smith?" Dammit, I just revisited those pages and two of the links are already dead. I wonder if I made copies of those articles? I should know better by now. You know what though? We still have the track thanks to NR2K3. Nascar and Bruton Smith et al. still can't take that away from us.


I think Bruton Smith talks from both sides of his face. Him and that whole crowd. Where are the good ol' boys? Look at 'em now--they got pretty boys. Sponsors want young, good-looking drivers and the teams must oblige if they want a decal on their car. Everytime someone gets a lil bit excited they haul 'em to the Nascar trailer; sometimes they slap their hands and sometimes they hit below the belt (in the wallet). When's the last time you saw a little rowdiness? That little Jeff Gordon push on Kenseth don't count. Can you say "Kevin Harvicks' crew"? They've all turned into model citizens now too.

A Word About The Game Tracks

You can't really go wrong with these. Of course there's no reason to race the conversion track any longer--let's face it, those tracks served a very useful purpose and they give you a surface to drive on. But with the newly created versions they just can't hold up (graphically at least). There's one conversion track where I prefer the configuration over the new one, probably Lemans. But the flat-top tree line just makes me crazy. North Wilkes doesn't suffer from that problem--it's just that the new tracks are so much better.

I probably shouldn't say this but maybe we need to use some tracks like very old ballparks (Fenway Park and Wrigley field come to mind) and keep them around for their character or charisma. And resist adding grandstands and all the modern improvements. I'm talking Nextel Cup here and not Wilkes. I really like every version here and that's not usual for me. I must say that the 1970 version is my favorite "drive". But the graphics are great for each track and I honestly don't have a favorite in that respect. As far as the racing goes I have no idea; it seems tough these days to find time to do more than 10 laps at a track, much less do some serious driving.

See Also:

Save North Wilkesboro Speedway Website

North Wilkesboro--news timeline at Jayski's

Nascar paying price for greed