NASCAR considered the smaller 2.2-mile course before deciding to the run the same layout utilized by Formula 1 for the United States Grand Prix. IndyCar also ran the longer course when they raced there in 2019.
The Austin, Texas road course opened in 2012 and has hosted a variety of motorsports events since then. NASCAR will be competing there for the first time next year, bringing all three national divisions.
“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. “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.”
Track alterations will be made in anticipation of NASCAR’s arrival including new tire-packs to potentially high-impact areas, extending the pit road wall, and the installation of caution lights and scoring loops. New curbing and rumble strips are also expected to be added.
No announcement has been made regarding race length and number of laps.
“The Circuit of The Americas is already a world-class, world-renowned facility,” stated 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.”