For years this 1.366 mile track has been a staple for the sport, and NASCAR looks to continue that tradition. This track that many have nicknamed “The Lady in Black”, “Too Tough to Tame”, always lives up to those names. In the fall of 1949, Harold Brasington had a vision just outside of Darlington, South Carolina that most men had only dreamed of.
[media-credit name=”Joe Dunn” align=”alignright” width=”225″][/media-credit]Many have questioned the unique design of the “egg shaped” track, it came to be when (Turns 3&4) were narrowed so they wouldn’t disturb the minnow pond just outside.
The first race was set to be scheduled on Labor Day of 1950, Harold wasn’t expecting many, he estimated at that time maybe 10,000 would show up for attendance. To his amazement, as well as the others in Darlington, S.C., over 25,000 showed up in attendance causing fans to literally stand on top of one another. 75 drivers set the field that day, and the driver that started P75, Johnny Mantz drove on to victory lane.
Home to one of the closest finishes in NASCAR history, Kurt Busch and Ricky Craven, took that honor in 2003 when Craven edged out Kurt Busch by only .002 sec, earning his 2nd career NASCAR Sprint Cup victory.
In 2004, the Darlington Raceway started a new tradition, having the race on Mother’s Day weekend. Along with this tradition, all of the driver’s mothers line up in the front of the track to participate in the pre-race ceremonies, “Gentleman Start Your Engines!”
The track “Too Tough to Tame” has definitely lived up to it’s name, and remains a NASCAR fan’s favorite. The question remains, who will learn to tame this track, and go dancing with the lady in black?