The Winchester Speedway is one of the oldest continuously-operating racetracks in the world. For over 100 years, motorsports’ best drivers have taken to the high-banked half-mile, leaving fans in awe while racing wheel-to-wheel.
The track first opened in 1916 as a dirt track under the name of Funk’s Speedway, named after the track’s first owner Frank Funk. The banking in the corners have been as high as 45 degrees before settling on the current 37 degree banking that exists today.
Winchester was a staple on the AAA Big Car Series in its early days, a precursor to what is now the NTT IndyCar Series. As open-wheel sanctioning transitioned from AAA to USAC, many of open-wheel racing’s best took to the high-banks to prove themselves. Past Indianapolis 500 winners Troy Ruttman, Gordon Johncock, and Johnny Rutherford all won at Winchester before finding success at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
The NASCAR Cup Series made their one and only appearance in 1950, the second year of the series. Buckie Sager dominated the race, but it was Lloyd Moore beating out Sager and that season’s champion Bill Rexford for his only Cup Series win.
Pete Wales owned the track from 1960-1970; and it was during that time that Winchester was paved for the first time. Roger Holdeman purchased the facility in 1970 and brought the first 400-lap Late Model race to Winchester. Over 50 years later, the Winchester 400 is regarded as one of the country’s most prestigious Super Late Model races.
Winchester was under the national spotlight for many years as part of ESPN’s Thursday Night Thunder program, showcasing the various USAC national series’ live to a national audience. Thursday Night Thunder helped launch the likes of Tony Stewart and Jeff Gordon to superstardom.
Stock car racing also has a steep history at the half-mile. The ASA National Tour has contested 51 races at Winchester, more than any other track. The ARCA Menards Series, USAR Hooter’s Pro Cup Series, and the Champion Racing Association (CRA) have also made Winchester a staple on their schedules.
The ASA STARS National Tour heads to Winchester Speedway on Sunday, October 15 for the Winchester 400 Presented by Vore’s Welding and Steel. The race will also serve as the season finale for the ASA/CRA Super Series. Tickets can be purchased by calling the track office at (765)584-9701 during office hours.
The ASA STARS National Tour opened the ten race, six-state schedule at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, FL on March 11. Jesse Love is the most recent winner, claiming the victory in Glass City 200 on September 16.
For the full ASA STARS National Tour schedule, plus Super Late Model rules and other information, please visit the series website at starsnationaltour.com, or be sure to follow the series on social media (Facebook: STARS National Series | Twitter: @racewithstars | IG: @starsnational).
ASA STARS National Tour
The ASA STARS National Tour debuted in March of 2023 for Super Late Model racing in America. Announced last October, many of the best drivers in America will compete in the ten-race national tour with a minimum $100,000 point fund. The championship team will be guaranteed $25,000.
The ASA STARS National Tour is made up of three races from each of the regional pavement Super Late Model Series under the Track Enterprises banner; the ASA CRA Super Series, the ASA Midwest Tour and the ASA Southern Super Series.
The Team Construction Winner’s Circle program has been announced as a part of the ASA STARS National Tour for licensed drivers/teams with perfect attendance. The program provides additional financial incentives to those teams who support the Series, thanks to Team Construction.
Track Enterprises, a Racing Promotions Company based in Illinois, will operate the ASA STARS National Tour. It announced the acquisition of the CRA sanctioning body in January and followed that up with the purchase of the Midwest Tour in July. In October, Track Enterprises President, Bob Sargent announced a partnership with the Southern Super Series which set the table for the formation of the ASA STARS National Tour.