The beginning of the auto industry in the early 1900's brought upon us the start of auto racing around the world. When the second car was built, racing was off and running.
As the sport grew around the world, money and hardware started to become the main winner's prize. Then the popularity of motorsports took off and so did the amount of prize money. When you think of big-money events, you often think of the biggest races in the world. The Indianapolis 500, Daytona 500, Monaco Grand Prix, Le-Man 24 Hour, the list goes on, as a driver, those are the races that get you excited and one day you want to be at the forefront of the winner's stage.
If you take a look through the history of Dirt Track Racing, big amounts of money haven't been passed around as much as other forms of the sport. As the turn of the century came in 2000, we got our chance at seeing these big money shows, with a few 'Million Dollar To Win,' events. With funding from mainstream sponsors and promoters, these races took off and we crowned the first millionaires in Dirt Track Racing.
Only lasting a few years, the million-dollar-to-win events quickly became only a footnote in our history.
In 2018, we have our first taste of a possible Dirt Track Racing million dollar event again. Mansfield Speedway, In Ohio, will introduce a formate for Late Model and Sprint Car drivers to earn up to $500,000 to win their respective A-Mains. The race will start out paying $100,000 each, with a $2,000 to start payout. If the track can muster-up enough funding through donations, drivers, teams, fans, and sponsors, they could reach that magical $500,000 number. The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series will sanction the Late Model portion, which almost locks in that the Late Model side will come close, if not hit that number.
This is a start, and great for the sport of Dirt Track Racing, the question is, where would you like to see a $1,000,000 to win event? Eldora Speedway? Knoxville Raceway? The Gateway Dirt Nationals? Chili Bowl Midget Nationals? Let us know!