NASCAR defines a short track as any track less than one mile in length. NASCAR fans know that short track racing is defined by bumping and banging, short tempers and fast action. Ask NASCAR fans to name their favorite race track and more than half will name a short track even though only 6 of the 36 races are held on the three remaining short tracks on the NASCAR Sprint Cup schedule. Here they are in order by popularity and excitement.
Bristol Motor Speedway bills itself as "The World's Fastest Half Mile." This high-banked short track is very fast, very tight and very exciting. The racing here was once compared to jetfighters in a gymnasium. Way too much horsepower in close quarters makes for a thrilling show.
The toughest ticket in NASCAR is the August race under the lights in Bristol and that's for a very good reason. It's always an incredible race. There is no doubt that Bristol Motor Speedway tops this list.
The short track that races like a superspeedway. Richmond International Raceway is the only track on this list that truly features multiple grooves. Cars can race side-by-side all night long and a faster car can jump to the top groove and still get by. There is still plenty of bump-and-run short track action but the additional racing grooves open up a whole other dimension to NASCAR Sprint Cup racing. Richmond sells out both races every year and fans definitely get their money's worth.
Martinsville Speedway is the only track remaining on the Sprint Cup schedule that saw action during NASCAR's original 1948 "strictly stock" season. This flat .526 mile oval is the smallest and slowest track on the schedule and jamming 43 cars on this short track makes for close quarters. Attending a race in Martinsville is like if your local county fair hosted a NASCAR race. It's got a small town feel like no other track on the schedule and you're nearly guaranteed to leave happy.