by John Gibson on March 22, 2011

Bryan Clauson lapped the half-mile Bristol at 13.672, but does that make Bristol Motor Speedway the fastest half-mile in the world? Photo Courtesy of

This past weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway, drivers attempted to break the Bristol track record that had stood since 2000 when Sammy Swindell lapped the half-mile in 13.860 at 138 mph. Three drivers were able to break the record: Bryan Clauson took his Tony Stewart Racing USAC pavement sprint car and lapped the track at 13.672. Jason Blonde and Mike Lichty were both able to go faster then that with both drivers lapping the high banks at 13.2 seconds in their modifieds, with Blonde taking the new record at 13.245 at 144.871 mph. Which makes Bristol Motor Speedway the fastest 1/2 mile paved speedway in the world. Unless I am forgetting a track, it should barely edge out tracks like Salem Speedway and Winchester Speedway which see USAC and winged sprint cars break into the 13 second barrier on a regular basis.

BUT, it is not the fastest 1/2 mile in the world. Earlier this year the record for a half mile speedway was set at the 2011 DIRTCar Nationals when perfect track conditions allowed Paul McMahan to lap the half-mile Volusia Speedway Park at 12.569 seconds at 143.209 mph. The previous record was held at Tony Stewart’s Eldora Speedway with a 12.707 by Craig Dollansky. However Eldora will look to take back the record when the World of Outlaw Sprint Cars return to the Rossburg Ohio track in July.

So good try Bristol, but Dirt is still where the speeds are at!