“It’s Cup Time” as St. Louis adds to its reputation as top U.S. sports city
September 15, 2021, St. Louis Region – World Wide Technology Raceway (WWTR) solidified its standing as a premier motorsports venue when NASCAR officials today awarded the 1.25-mile oval in metropolitan St. Louis a highly coveted date on the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series schedule.
To be officially titled at a later date, the WWTR NASCAR Cup Series race will take place Sunday, June 5, 2022. Adding the prestigious NASCAR Cup Series to WWTR’s portfolio further heightens St. Louis’ status as a motorsports destination and is a significant win for the raceway. It is the only one in the U.S. to now host the premier series for each of the three preeminent racing organizations: NASCAR, INDYCAR and NHRA.
“I set some ambitious goals when I took over the racetrack and to see them come to fruition is a dream come true,” said Curtis Francois, WWTR owner. “Thanks to the hard work of our team, corporate partners such as Dave Steward and World Wide Technology, and sponsors like Bommarito Automotive Group, I am proud to welcome the NASCAR Cup Series to the St. Louis region. I can’t wait to celebrate this incredible victory with our fans.”
The NASCAR Cup Series is consumed by millions of viewers – at track, on television and through various digital platforms – on a weekly basis for 10 months a year around the globe. These races are credited with delivering millions of dollars each year to host communities. An economic impact study recently completed by The Rawlings Sports Business Management Department at Maryville University projects that this NASCAR Cup Series race will produce at least $60 million in economic impact for the St. Louis market.
“The dedication Curtis has shown to the sport of auto racing is one of many factors that led to bringing an event to the Gateway City,” said Ben Kennedy, NASCAR senior vice president, strategy & innovation. “The corporate and civic leadership from St. Louis and southern Illinois has been truly welcoming to NASCAR, and we cannot wait to see the NASCAR Cup Series in action at World Wide Technology Raceway.”
Since acquiring the track in 2011, Francois has mobilized millions of dollars of private investment to expand the facility and have it certified as one of the top racing venues in the country. Its signature oval is highly popular with drivers and fans alike; it combines the best of short track excitement and high-speed straightaways.
“This is a tremendous win for WWT Raceway and the St. Louis region,” said David L. Steward, founder and chairman of World Wide Technology. “World Wide Technology and the Steward Family are grateful and privileged to play a role in bringing a NASCAR Cup Series race to St. Louis fans. We are thrilled to welcome a new generation of fans to this exciting sport and to emphasize the importance of STEM education through racing.”
“Earning a NASCAR Cup race solidifies St. Louis’ position as one on the nation’s premier markets for professional sports, fan experiences and tourism,” said Andrew C. Taylor, founding chair of Greater St. Louis, Inc. and executive chairman of Enterprise Holdings Inc. “Curtis Francois and the team at the raceway have delivered a significant win for the Metro East and the entire St. Louis region.”
“Hosting the premier series from each of the major motorsports sanctioning bodies is a tremendous honor – and earning a NASCAR Cup Series race is like having the All-Star Game, Stanley Cup Finals and World Series here, every year,” said Francois. “It’s Cup time!”
Drivers are sure to deliver an exciting race for fans. “This track is super difficult. The long straights make you pay the price if you miss a corner, and both corners require different strategies, approaches and braking techniques,” explained Christopher Bell, who drives No. 20 Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing. Bell, who earned his first Cup win in February on the Daytona International Speedway road course, is a previous WWTR race winner with a 2016 victory in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
For more information on WWTR, please call (618) 215-8888. Follow WWTR on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
About World Wide Technology Raceway
World Wide Technology Raceway (WWTR) is the home of INDYCAR, NASCAR and NHRA racing in the St. Louis region. Located just five minutes from downtown St. Louis and covering more than 600 acres, WWTR is the largest outdoor entertainment facility in the area. WWTR’s facilities include a 1/4-mile drag strip, 1.25-mile superspeedway, recently expanded 2.0-mile road course, a state-of-the-art karting facility, a 14-acre, multi-purpose dirt off-road venue and the Gateway Drive-In Theater at World Wide Technology Raceway. WWTR acquired Gateway National Golf Links, adjacent to the speedway property, in 2019. WWTR was the recipient of the 2017 Outstanding Facility of the Year Award from the Race Track Business Conference, the 2017 Spirit of St. Louis Award from the St. Louis Attractions Association, and the 2020 NASCAR Drive for Diversity Award. In 2018, owner and CEO Curtis Francois received the Innovator Award from the St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission in recognition of his work for restoring World Wide Technology Raceway (known then as Gateway Motorsports Park) to prominence. In 2020, WWTR received the Track Award at the annual NASCAR Drive for Diversity Awards. The 2021 season marks the 10th year of Francois’ ownership of the facility.
The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) is the sanctioning body for the No. 1 form of motorsports in the United States and owner of 16 of the nation’s major motorsports entertainment facilities. NASCAR consists of three national series (NASCAR Cup Series™, NASCAR Xfinity Series™, and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series™), four regional series (ARCA Menards Series, ARCA Menards Series East & West and the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour), one local grassroots series (NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series) and three international series (NASCAR Pinty’s Series, NASCAR Peak Mexico Series, NASCAR Whelen Euro Series). The International Motor Sports Association™ (IMSA®) governs the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship™, the premier U.S. sports car series. NASCAR also owns Motor Racing Network, Racing Electronics and ONE DAYTONA. Based in Daytona Beach, Florida, with offices in eight cities across North America, NASCAR sanctions more than 1,200 races in more than 30 U.S. states, Canada, Mexico and Europe. For more information visit www.NASCAR.com and www.IMSA.com, and follow NASCAR on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat (‘NASCAR’).