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“St. Louis Track” actually in Madison, Illinois

It is a race track in Illinois and a race called “Enjoy Illinois 300”.

But everyone calls the area St. Louis, the route was originally named after the nearby metropolis and later received the St. Louis-typical nickname “Gateway”.

But today the naming rights for the race track in Illinois belong to World Wide Technology, a giant service provider based in Mississippi River in the nearby Missouri City of Maryland heights.

Man, this is a geography test!

World Wide began hosting Cup races two years ago and the two winners so far have come from Las Vegas (Kyle Busch) and Connecticut (Joey Logano).

Do you remember her?

These are a couple of guys who want to win everywhere right now. Maybe the positive vibe in St. Louis, coupled with a generous dash of Illinois, will be the right tonic.

Let's sail up the Big Muddy, moor on the east bank and get to know one of the Cup Series' newer playgrounds…

∎ Worldwide Technologies Speedway was originally called St. Louis International Raceway and later known as Gateway International Raceway. The name was never associated with a facility in Missouri, let alone St. Louis.

∎ The line is located on the Illinois side of the Mississippi in Madison, a town of about 3,000 residents. The town is so small that neither of the two Amtrak passenger trains that pass through it stop there.

∎ The track's road course opened in 1985 and the oval track opened in 1997. The oval track is 1¼ miles long and has turns with banking of 9 and 11 degrees. The facility originally opened in 1967 as a drag racing facility.

∎ In June 1972, Evel Knievel arrived in Madison and landed his private plane at the race track. On two consecutive days, he jumped ten cars on his Harley.

∎ NASCAR's Cup Series began racing there in 2022, but the Xfinity Series raced there from 1997 to 2010 and the trucks raced there from 1998 to 2010 and every year since 2014.

∎ Dale Earnhardt won in Madison in 1998 and 1999, earning his second Xfinity Series title.

∎ The track has hosted virtually all of North America's national racing organizations, including the AMA Superbikes. However, only once, in 1995 on an August day when temperatures reached 37 degrees.

∎ The Dover Motorsports group took over the race track in 1998 and closed it in 2010. A year later, St. Louis developer Curtis Francois bought the track and quickly made it usable again for various racing series.

∎ The grandstands in Turns 1 and 2 are called the “Wallace Grandstands” in honor of NASCAR brothers Rusty, Mike and Kenny, who grew up nearby.

Anna Harden

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