Richard Petty at NASCAR's Last Dirt Race

Richard Petty at Home State 200
by Michael Satterfield

NASCAR announced that the 2021 season will include the first dirt track race for the series since 1970. While it has been met with a mixed reception, I thought it would be fun to share some photos from the last NASCAR race on dirt, the Home State 200. Held at the North Carolina State Fairgrounds outside of Raleigh it was the end of an era. The photos show NASCAR Legend Richard Petty and Peter Goodwill Hamilton who drove for Petty in the 70s. 

NASCAR Home State 200

In 2013 Richard Petty told a NASCAR reporter: “I remember some guy going into the first corner there, they had horse barns on the outside of the race track, something happened to one of the cars and he went tearing off and landed in one of the horse barns, luckily, there weren’t any horses in them. You remember stuff like that.”

In 2013 the Camping World Truck Series’ went back to dirt at Eldora Speedway, a 24-degree banked half-mile dirt track in Rossburg, Ohio. In the early days of NASCAR, the majority of races were held at dirt tracks, but by 1970 only the half-mile at Columbia Speedway and Raleigh were still unpaved. Petty won both at Columbia and Raleigh on the dirt that year, and he felt that moving away from dirt track made the sport more professional, a statement he echoed in a recent interview about the addition of Bristol Motor Speedways Dirt track to the 2021 schedule.  

Richard Petty at Home State 200

Richard Petty at Home State 200



Richard Petty at Home State 200

Richard Petty at Home State 200

 Photos Courtesy of the State Archives of North Carolina

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