Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Atlanta Waves Off Resurfacing Plan For Another Year

After an in-depth review and consultation with NASCAR, Goodyear, race teams and drivers, Atlanta Motor Speedway has elected to postpone its plan to resurface the 20-year-old racing surface until at least after its 2018 NASCAR weekend.

Last paved in 1997, the abrasive AMS surface is known for producing slick and challenging racing conditions, with some of the fastest tire fall-off of any track on the circuit. A number of  drivers voiced concern when plans to resurface the track were announced in January of this year, urging track ownership to delay the project.

AMS will continue a meticulous maintenance program in an effort to maintain the surface and prevent further deterioration. Additionally, patch work on the current asphalt will be completed, where necessary. Track officials will reevaluate its condition following the 2018 triple-header NASCAR weekend and determine whether to undertake a complete resurfacing, with new asphalt to be laid over the current surface.

“We appreciate all of the input we have received from key individuals in the NASCAR industry, as well as our customers,” said Ed Clark, Atlanta Motor Speedway president. “The overwhelming majority have urged us to hold off on paving so that we can enjoy at least one more weekend of high-speed slipping and sliding in 2018 before the new surface is installed.”

Since it was paved in 1997, the track has hosted 32 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races, 20 NASCAR XFINITY Series races, 16 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races, eight ARCA Racing Series races, four IndyCar Series races and countless U.S. Legends and Bandolero car races on its quarter-mile “Thunder Ring.”


  1. This is foolishness on Atlanta's part. The surface long ago became a competitive liability - the racing 1999-2002 was excellent and the more worn the asphalt has become the less competitive the racing has become - and this past Atlanta 500 it began to become a bit of a safety issue with several tire failures. Drivers need to get out of their comfort zone and recognize the track needs fresh asphalt.

    1. Adding to the issue is the repaving of Texas Motor Speedway went better than I think most expected - while carving out a fast second groove will take some time, in the Texas 500 it progressed faster than the pessimists seemed to think it would.