Toledo Speedway was first constructed in 1960 as a half-mile dirt track. However, its tenure as a dirt track lasted just two years. In 1962, the track was paved, and it continues today with that racing surface.
In the 40-plus years of its existence, this facility has become one of the best paved tracks in the Midwest. Through its history, legions of traveling series have raced here. The track is best known as being a stock-car track, but a number of open-wheel groups began competing here over the last 10 years.
The USAC Sprint Cars have visited Toledo Speedway on a number of occasions, along with the ARCA Midgets. During the 2001 season, two more open-wheel groups appeared on the same program, namely the winged Auto Value Super Sprints and the ISMA Super Modifieds. The popularity of the fenderless groups with the fans will undoubtedly keep track management bringing them to the track.
In the stock-car arena, the track has hosted the national ARCA RE/MAX series since the '60s. In fact, the ARCA influence increased in a big way at Toledo Speedway in 1999 when ARCA assumed control of the facility. General Manager Scott Schultz says the acquisition "was a good match for ARCA, which also owns Flat Rock Speedway in Michigan."
Toledo Speedway was also the original host of the popular Iceman Series, which started in 1987, and was initially known as the Toledo 400 Series. The series still has Toledo as a stop today. Other prominent stock car groups that make Toledo a stop include the American Speed Association (ASA), the ARCA Truck Series and the Kendall Late Model Series.
Describing Toledo Speedway as a half-mile track isn't quite all the story, as there is also a one-fifth-mile paved track located within the larger oval. The smaller oval is used for the track's Pure Stock and Figure 8 cars, along with the Dwarf and Legends cars when they visit.
Schultz explains that there has been an extensive rework of the facility. "First, we are building new pits outside the backstretch," he says. "That way, the fans will be able to view the whole track without having their view blocked by transporters. The infield has also been upgraded with a new pit road.
"Six suites atop the grandstand were completed in 2001, and we have provided excellent viewing positions for telecasts of certain races. And finally, there was a complete track repaving planned for completion before the end of the 2001 season."
One look at the maze of corporate sponsor signs around the outside of the track shows the effort the track is putting forth to work with the community. "There was no marketing of the track for 20 years, and we're working to change that," Schultz says. "I think that we have just scratched the surface. We also try to work closely with the community."
* Half-mile paved
* 13-degree banked turns
* 5-degree banked straights
* One-fifth mile track inside with light banking
Toledo Speedway * Dept. CT05 * 5639 Benore Rd. * Toledo, OH 43613 * 419/727-1100 * www.toledospeedway.com