North Carolina Motorsports
The North Carolina Motorsports industry contributes more than $5 billion annually to the North Carolina economy and generates 24,400 direct and indirect jobs in the state. North Carolina has 82% of the Nextel Cup teams, 72% of Busch Series teams, and 55% of the Craftsman Truck Teams. The Motorsports industy is America’s fastest growing sport. Racing hasn’t always enjoyed such popularity. In fact, racing claims its roots in the mountains of North Carolina, in moonshine country.
Bootleggers built their cars to go fast in order to outrun the law on the rugged back roads. Legend has it that the bootleggers started to take notice of each other’s cars. They started racing each other and a great American pastime was born. NASCAR (National Association of Stock Car Auto Racing) was founded in 1947. The first true NASCAR was held in Charlotte in the summer of 1949. Today, motorsports is a major international business. Drivers, owners, and sponsors are recognized worldwide. North Carolina is the birthplace to many of the sports greatest drivers, and North Carolina Motorsports legends and history came alive.
Mooresville, a town located approximately 25 miles north of Charlotte, has been nicknamed “Race City, USA” due to the large number of racing related businesses. Mooresville boast more residents who drive over 200 mph or can change 4 tires in less than 15 seconds. This town of approximately 18,000 is home to the North Carolina Auto Racing Hall of Fame, racecar training schools, 60 motorsports teams and dozens of NASCAR drivers. Mooresville courted the racing industry when there was a decline in the textile industry. Now over 8% of the towns population works in a motorsports related job.
Mooresville is home to the NASCAR Technical Institute, the nation’s first technical training school to blend automotive and NASCAR specific motorsports technology. Up to 2000 students a day are trained in the $12 million, 146,000 square foot facility.
Money Magazine has named Mooresville, NC as one of the 100 best towns to live in.
The magazine, which gave Mooresville the ranking of 65 out of 100, focused on small communities across the country that “offered the best combination of economic opportunity, good schools, safe streets, things to do, and a real sense of community” as its qualifiers for the year’s awards.
Two other North Carolina towns made the cut, too. Apex was ranked 14th and Holly Springs was ranked 22nd.
Money cited that more than 60 racing teams, the allure of Lake Norman, and Mooresville’s “balance between modernization and main street values” as the source of the town’s appeal.
“Certainly it is always nice for the community to get accolades from national publications,” said Town Manager Jamie Justice. “This particular accolade supports what many of us already know, and this is Mooresville, NC is a great place to live.”
The town’s population is listed by the magazine as 23,100; the median home price is listed at $208,274.
Race City, USA
The North Carolina Tourist Guide is the most comprehensive travel and tourism information guide for Race City, USA. Whether you are looking for a particular teams garage, NASCAR memorabilia, or to peruse through a showroom, you will find it here on the North Carolina Tourist Guide.
The reason Mooresville is otherwise known as Race City USA is because throughout the professional automotive sports world, many racing teams call Mooresville home. In the Nextel Cup Series, Ginn Racing (featuring drivers Mark Martin and Regan Smith), Dale Earnhardt, Inc. (Martin Truex Jr., Dale Earnhardt Junior, and Paul Menard), Penske Racing South (Kurt Busch and Ryan Newman), Robert Yates Racing (David Gilliland and Ricky Rudd), and Team Red Bull Racing (Brian Vickers and A.J Allmendinger) are all located in Mooresville. You can tour these race shops, watch crew members working on the cars through the viewing rooms, and peruse through the memorabilia. Dale Earnhardt, Inc., founded by The Intimidator himself, also offers a memorial to one of the greatest stock car drivers of all time.
Besides Nextel Cup teams, there are also Busch Grand National Teams that reside in Mooresville. The teams include JR Motorsports (featuring driver Brad Keselowski), Roush Racing (Todd Kluever, Mark Martin, Greg Biffle, Matt Kenseth, Danny O’Quinn, Carl Edwards, David Ragan and Jamie McMurray), Dale Earnhardt Inc. (Dale Ernhardt Jr., Paul Menard, Martin Truex Jr., and Kerry Earnhardt), Fitz Bradshaw Racing (David Stremme, Mike Bliss, Carlos Contreras, and Rueben Pardo), Team Rensi (Bobby Hamiltion Jr., David Gilliland, Richard Johns), Bob Schacht Motorsports (Mike Bliss), Braun Racing (John Andretti, Jason Leffler, and Dave Blaney), Mac Hill Motorsports (Frank Kreyer), Spraker Racing Enterprise (Jeff Spraker), RWI Racing (Stephen Wallace, Jamie McMurray), NEMCO Motorsports (Joe Nemechek), and Robert Yates Racing (Stephen Leicht).
The Craftsman Truck Series also has a presence in Race City, USA. The teams represented here are Green Light Racing (Tim Sauter, Chad McCumber), Roush Racing (Travis Kvapil, Peter Shepard, Eric Darnell), Bill Ballew Motorsports (Bill Lester), Brevak Racing (Brad Mueller), Red Horse Racing (David Green), Key Motorsports (Frank Keyer, Brandon Miller), Wyler Motorsports (Jack Spraque), Spears Motorsports (Dennis Setzer), and Germain Racing (Ted Musgrave, Todd Bodine).
There are four ARCA teams that exist in Mooresville. These teams are Spraker Racing Enterprises, Inc. (featuring Michelle Theriault), E.C.C. Motorsports (A.J Henriksen), Bob Jones Racing (Chase Pistone), and Brack Maggard Racing (Walt Brannen). There is one NHRA team in Mooresville, Cagnazzi Racing (Dave Connolly, Jeg Coughlin Jr., and Shane Tucker).
These shops not only build, test, and work on cars; most also serve as headquarters for the racing and pit crews, so you never know who might be hanging around when you go in for a visit!