Arcadia Publishing When Charlotte Motor Speedway opened in June 1960, the track built by Bruton Smith and Curtis Turner became a cornerstone in the decade that launched NASCAR's superspeedway era. Stock car racing's first paved 1.5-mile track immediately grabbed the motorsports world's attention with the young sport's longest event--a 600-mile race. And the track never left the spotlight, despite struggling through several years of bankruptcy. After regaining control of his beloved track in 1975, Smith, along with former speedway general manager H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler and current president Marcus Smith, transformed the facility into a groundbreaking showplace with trackside condominiums, a 16,000-square-foot high-definition television screen, the luxurious Speedway Club, VIP suites, stadium seating, and the first superspeedway in NASCAR's modern era to host night racing. The historic speedway has always been a favorite with Hollywood filmmakers and in recent years has expanded into a multiuse motorsports facility.