Texas History Dates to 1969
By: MRN Staff on November 2, 2011 | 9:30 A.M. EST
Richard Petty won at Texas World Speedway in 1971, 1972 and 1973. (Photo: ISC Archives)
Before racing began at Texas Motor Speedway in 1997, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series first raced in Texas at Texas World Speedway in College Station.
The two-mile track was one of only four super speedways on the NASCAR circuit when it debuted, and is one of only seven tracks two miles or longer in length that the Series has raced on ever.
The track was completed in 1968 and NASCAR's premier series first raced there in 1969. Thirty-eight cars started that race on Dec. 7, 1969, with Bobby Isaac capturing his 17th win of the season at the season finale at the new track.
Isaac lapped the field twice in that first race and finished in an average speed of 144.277 mph.
The first race gave an indication for what was to come in the future at the track - only three caution flags flew during the race.
With eight total NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, Texas World Speedway never saw more than five caution flags at any race.
The track even experienced a caution-free, 200-lap race in 1980. Cale Yarborough won that race on June 1, 1980, from the pole position. He led 110 laps and won the race by a one-lap margin over Richard Petty.
The year before, the College Station track only experienced one caution period, which didn't come until the 198th lap of the race. Darrell Waltrip won that race from the fourth starting position and led 155 of the race's 200 laps. It was the first race at the track since 1973.
Every race at Texas World Speedway was won from a starting position of seventh or better. Three-time College Station winner Richard Petty was the only repeat winner at the track.
Petty won back-to-back races at the track in 1971 and 1972 and then won again in 1973. There was one race between his wins in 1972 and 1973 when the series raced twice at the track for the first and only time in 1972.
Buddy Baker won that race on Nov. 11, 1972. The race was the season's finisher.
Benny Parsons won the final NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Texas World Speedway in 1981.
Be sure to join MotorRacingNetwork.com on Friday at Noon (ET) to listen to a replay of MRN's coverage of the 1972 Lone Star 500 at Texas World Speedway.