When the first Legends Car was unveiled at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in April of 1992, the concept of fun and affordable “spec” class of racing was escalated. Unfortunately these cars were destined to be raced on asphalt, leaving the dirt track racers resigned to the dwarf cars and the odd assortment of local and regional series rules. News from Speedway Motorsports Inc PR on August 21 confirmed that a Legends Car was being developed for Dirt tracks.
The original asphalt Legends Car was designed by Elliott Forbes-Robinson, famed road racing champion, who designed these 5/8-scale fiberglass full-fendered versions of the famed NASCAR modifieds driven by legendary drivers such as Fireball Roberts, Buck Baker, Curtis Turner, Speedy Thompson and Banjo Matthews.
The new dirt track version of the Legends Car will be designed by Ray Evernham, CEO of Ray Evernham Enterprises. Evernham has partnered with Bruton Smith, chairman and CEO of Speedway Motorsports, Inc. to bring this series to the dirt.
The new Legends car will initially run at East Lincoln Speedway in Stanley, N.C. next year, which is owned by Evernham, and expand to other top dirt tracks around the country. A special unveiling of the new car will be held on October 13, 2010, at The Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway, followed by an on-track demonstration in early November.
The new dirt race car will be built on the same common platform as the current Legends Car platform, but will offer a more powerful engine, improved handling and a bigger car body.
The existing engine in the Asphalt Legends Cars are a sealed Yamaha 1250 cc engine that is rated at 122 horsepower. Wheelbase for the asphalt Legends is mandated at 73″ with a body that is 60″ wide, 10’6″ long and 46″ high. Minimum weight is listed at 1300 lbs with driver. The asphalt car also has spec tires and shocks with BF Goodrich’s TA4 HR4 205/13R60 as the chosen tire and Bilstein Shocks coilover shocks as the spec shock.
There is no word yet on car specs for the new Dirt Legends Car.
For more information, see the official press release below:
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE:
Bruton Smith and Ray Evernham Team Up to Launch New Dirt Track Series for U.S. Legend Cars International
• Evernham to Design, Develop New Generation of Dirt Legend Car
• Partnership Set to Drive Dirt Track Racing for Future Generations
Today, two of racing leaders took a bold step in preserving and protecting the future of racing for generations to come.
Bruton Smith, chairman and CEO of Speedway Motorsports, Inc., and Ray Evernham, CEO of Ray Evernham Enterprises, have partnered to launch a new dirt track racing series as part of U.S. Legend Cars International. The series will run an innovative dirt track version of the Legend Car, designed by Evernham.
“The local tracks around the country are where the stars of the sport get their start, and we need to create the opportunities that inspire young racers today and hone their talents for tomorrow,” said Smith. “Grassroots racing is a passion of mine and of Ray’s, and through this partnership we can give back to our roots and support the future of grassroots racing.”
The series will initially run at East Lincoln Speedway in Stanley, N.C. next year, which is owned by Evernham, and expand to other top dirt tracks around the country. A special unveiling of the new car will be held on October 13, 2010, at The Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway, followed by an on-track demonstration in early November.
“Through this partnership, we will offer a comprehensive program featuring great race cars, safe, sanctioned racing for the drivers and thrilling racing for the fans,” added Smith. “It will be an excellent development series for young drivers and a fun, affordable experience for adults who want to race.”
“It’s an honor to be working with a visionary like Bruton Smith on this program,” said Evernham. “He has done so much to move this sport forward and continually looks for new ways to inspire drivers and fans alike. This partnership will help keep dirt track racing alive for years to come.”
Car Designed for Dirt Track Power, Performance and Affordability
The new dirt track race car is being developed by Ray Evernham in conjunction with SMI and U.S. Legend Cars International. Evernham will oversee the design, fabrication and testing of the new chassis, engine and body style for the car. The cars will be manufactured at the U.S. Legend Cars International factory in Concord, N.C. and sold through the current dealer network.
“The challenge of designing a brand new race car is always an exciting one, because you basically start with a clean sheet of paper,” said Evernham, who led the design of the Dodge race car for return to NASCAR Sprint Cup competition in 2001. “You get to start with the elements that are performing well, then incorporate new materials and technology to build a race car to meet your goals.”
The new dirt race car will be built on the same common platform as the current Legend Car platform, but will offer a more powerful engine, improved handling and a bigger car body.
“Basically, we’re developing an entry level, open-wheel, dirt-style race car,” said Evernham. “We want to give drivers a car that is safe, powerful and easy to handle. We also want to give teams the ability for some customization, but still control the costs for excessive development and maintain a level playing field among competitors.”
In addition to designing the car, Evernham will consult with the series on rules and competition, and serve as consultant for marketing and promotion.
Competitors and track owners interested in participating in the new series can contact U.S. Legend Cars International for information.
US Legend Cars, Inc.
US Legend Cars, Inc. is a subsidiary of Speedway Motorsports, Inc. (NYSE: TRK), a leading marketer and promoter of motorsports entertainment in the United States. The 600 Racing Inc. facility features 100,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Harrisburg, N.C., capable of producing as many as 40 cars a month. 600 Racing, Inc. has manufactured more than 4,000 Legends Cars since 1992.