What Makes Homestead-Miami Speedway So Special?
Homestead-Miami Speedway is one of the tracks which quickly after its opening was established as one of the most important racing venues in the United States.
Homestead Miami Speedway was built to help revival of the region
The story of Homestead-Miami Speedway has an interesting beginning. In 1992, hurricane Andrew devastated Homestead, so Miami motorsports promoter Ralph Sanchez had the plan to build a racing circuit as a part of the revival of the whole region. In August of 1993, the ground was broken and the works on the huge facility have begun.
The construction was ended in 1995 and in November the track was opened. The first event held at the new venue was the NASCAR Busch Series race – Jiffy Lube 300. Homestead-Miami Speedway is rectangular-oval with four turns with a layout pretty similar to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The track is 2.4 km long with a banking of 18-20 degrees in turns and only 3 degrees on straights. The stands capacity is around 55.000.
Immediate success despite some concerns
Homestead-Miami Speedway quickly became very popular, probably not because of the track itself as it was relatively slow and hard for overtaking. The things which made this circuit so popular were the colorful buildings and walls, so the new facility settled well in the nearby art-deco area of Miami Beach. as well the fact it is located near the ocean.
Oval track was modified several times
There were some concerns as to the crash angles but some improvements were done in 1996 when the turns were widened by 7 meters. Finally, in 1997 Homestead-Miami Speedway was reconfigured from rectangular to the more traditional, continuous turn oval. The last reconfiguration of the turns was done in 2003 when the banking was increased from 6 to 18-20 degrees. Finally, in 2005 the lights were installed and the track became suitable for the night racing. Almost 2.5 millions of watts of power per hour are necessary to illuminate the track what is equal to the amount of power needed to light more than 17.000 blocks with residential street lighting in South Florida.
The Homestead-Miami Speedway also has another layout – the Road Course – which is suitable for the various racing categories. Located in the oval’s infield, this track is 3.7 km long and has 11 turns.
NASCAR Series races are the main events
Since the opening in 1995, the NASCAR Series’ races are the main events at Homestead-Miami Speedway. All of the top three divisions are regular at this track but the Sprint Cup’s Ford Eco Boost 400 race is definitely the most important because this race is the final race of the season since 2002.
Apart from the NASCAR races, Homestead-Miami Speedway hosts the Can-Am Series race as well the races of Ferrari Challenge North America. Previously this track also hosted many other racing championships, like CART and IndyCar Series, Indy Lights, FIA GT Championship, Grand-Am Series, IMSA Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge, etc.
Records and fatalities
Lap record time (0:24.462) at the oval track was set by Sam Hornish Jr during 2006 Verizon IndyCar Series race, while the NASCAR Series record lap time holder is Brad Keselowski – 0:29.816. Lap record (1:11.806) at Road Course was set by Darren Law, during Grand-Am Series race.
Sadly, Homestead-Miami Speedway has an inglorious record of fatalities. In 1997, in the NASCAR Truck Series race, John Nemechek, the younger brother of Joe Nemechek, died after a collision in turn one. Five years later, Jeff Clinton was killed during a training session for the Grand-Am race when his car went airborne and flipped several times. In 2006, the IRL driver Paul Dana was fatally injured in a crash during the warm-up session before the race.
Video – Homestead Miami Speedway
Getting to Homestead Miami Speedway
The nearest international airport is in Miami, located around 50 km to the north of the Homestead Speedway. Getting there by cars is easy as the Speedway is near the Highway 1. The alternative routes are also available and many of them are recommended because of traffic jams on the highway during the main races weekends. Free parking with a capacity of 30.000 cars is available at the circuit for ticket holders.
Address: 1 Speedway Boulevard, Homestead, FL 33035, USA
Phone: +1 305 230 5000