Atlanta Motor Speedway (iRacing)
With 125,000+ seats, Atlanta Motor Speedway, located about 20 miles south of downtown Atlanta in Hampton, GA, has come a very long way from the first race, held in 1960 and won by NASCAR legend Fireball Roberts, who also took the pole at 133 mph. Spectators from that day, who watched from one small grandstand or on blankets spread out on an adjacent dirt bank, wouldn’t begin to recognize the facility today, even down to the name. Dubbed Atlanta International Raceway when it opened, the track struggled financially through the ’60s and ’70s before finding a degree of stability in the ’80s. (Future Georgia governor and President of the United States Jimmy Carter briefly worked as a ticket-seller on race weekends in the ’60s.)
Real change came following Bruton Smith’s purchase of the facility in 1990, with the culmination of the transformation of Atlanta International Speedway occurring in 1997 following an extensive reconfiguration that switched front and back straightaways and added a double-dogleg in the new front straightaway. In the seven intervening years, new grandstands sprouted almost every year, along with a nine-story tower, Tara Place, that houses the track offices and a number of luxury condominiums. Subsequently the Winners Grandstand was erected overlooking the double-dogleg frontstretch and pits, along with the new private-membership Club One, which features climate-controlled views of the entire track.In 2018 iRacing added two Rallycross configurations to the infield (Long & Short), further adding to the utility of the track.