Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
|Location||Troy Township, Richland County, at 7721 Steam Corners Road, Lexington, Ohio|
|Time zone||UTC-5 (UTC-4 DST)|
Open seating: 65,000
|Owner||Green Savoree Mid-Ohio, LLC|
|Operator||Green Savoree Racing Promotions|
|Major events||Honda 200
Verizon IndyCar Series
NASCAR Xfinity Series
Honda Super Cycle Weekend presented by Dunlop Tire
AMA Pro Racing
Mid-Ohio Sports Car Challenge
American Le Mans Series
EMCO Gears Classic presented by KeyBank
Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series
|Original Road Course|
|Length||2.4 mi (3.86 km)|
|Second Road Course|
|Length||2.258 mi (3.634 km)|
|Lap record||1:03.8700 minutes (Simon Pagenaud, Team Penske (Dallara+Chevrolet+Firestone), 2016, IndyCar)|
Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course is a road course auto racing facility located in Troy Township, Richland County, Ohio, United States, just outside the village of Lexington. (Mid-Ohio has also colloquially become a term for the entire north-central region of the state, from south of Sandusky to north of Columbus.)
The track opened as a 15-turn, 2.4 mile (3.86 km) road circuit run clockwise. The back portion of the track allows speeds approaching 180 mph (290 km/h). A separate starting line is located on the backstretch to allow for safer rolling starts. The regular start/finish line is located on the pit straight. In 1990, the track underwent a refurbishment. A new retaining wall was built, the entire track was resurfaced, widened, and concrete was paved in the apexes of the turns to prevent asphalt deterioration. In addition, a straightaway was paved through the chicane, allowing for two different track layouts, the original 2.4-mile (3.9 km) circuit, and a new 13-turn, 2.258 mile (3.634 km) circuit. In 1990, the CART series began utilizing the 2.258-mile (3.634 km) layout. In 2006, a second major refurbishment saw several improvements. The entire circuit was repaved, and the concrete patches in the turn apexes were removed. A new motorcycle "short course" was created by connecting turn one with the backstretch, and another motocross oval was created by connecting the chicane straight with the backstretch. The additional layouts allow simultaneous use of the multiple course, for instructional and competitive uses. The improvements also included a motocross facility, that has since been closed. There is grandstand seating for 10,000 spectators, and three observation mounds alongside the track raise the capacity to over 75,000.
The track was opened in 1962 by Les Griebling and several Mansfield-area businessmen as a location for weekend sports car racing. In 1982, Mid-Ohio was purchased by Jim Trueman, a renowned road racer and the founder of Red Roof Inns. Trueman added permanent grandstands, amphitheater-style seating, garages with spectator balconies, a five-story media and hospitality center, underground tunnels and an updated paddock area. In 1990, the track underwent a refurbishment. A new retaining wall was built, the entire track was resurfaced, widened, and concrete was paved in the apexes of the turns to prevent asphalt deterioration. In addition, a straightaway was paved through the chicane, allowing for two different track layouts, the original 2.4-mile (3.9 km) circuit, and a new 13-turn, 2.258 mile (3.634 km) circuit. In 2006, the track again underwent extensive renovation. The track and pit lane were completely resurfaced and connectors were added to the track's famed Keyhole section to allow for three separate road course configurations. Also completed was the removal of concrete patches from the track, the relocation of the wall and guardrail at Turn 1, the expansion of gravel traps at the exits of Turn 1 and the keyhole, the replacement of all remaining old-style catch fencing, and the standardization of curbing throughout the circuit. These changes have resulted in a faster, safer, more competitive and attractive facility for drivers, riders and race fans.
The sports car course operates from April through November each year. During this time, the facility is host for a number of nationally sanctioned race weekends, all of which are open to the public. Mid-Ohio has hosted "closed course" events for kart racing events since the late 1960s sanctioned by I.K.F. & W.K.A. and run by the Dart kart Club with up to 400 entries attending. Karts use the full track with the chicane. Additionally, on-site motor home and tent camping spaces are available. The 2011 season marks the 50th in the track's storied history of racing. On March 2, 2011, it was announced that the track had been purchased from Truesports by Green Savoree Racing Promotions, which currently promotes several IndyCar street course races, ending Truesports' 29 years of ownership. On November 13, 2012, NASCAR announced that the track would hold the Mid-Ohio Challenge in the 2013 season.
The Mid-Ohio SchoolEdit
Founded in 1993, The Mid-Ohio School offers licensed drives and motorcycle riders programs in defensive driving, high performance driving and performance track riding programs. Students in each course partake in classroom and private instruction and group drills. Participants test their newly refined skills in the controlled environment of the facility's Vehicle Dynamics Center and, on the track.
The Mid-Ohio School is AAA Approved and recognized as a recent recipient of the Ohio State Highway Patrol’s Partners for Safety award. 18 programs are available to drivers and riders of all ages and ability levels from defensive driving programs for teens and adults, on-track high performance courses for the automotive enthusiasts to current and aspiring racers.
- Green Savoree Racing Buys Mid-Ohio Course, Ultimate Motorcycling, March 2, 2011, Retrieved 2011-03-02
- Fryer, Jenna (2012-11-13). "NASCAR adds Mid-Ohio to Nationwide Series in 2013". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved 2012-11-13.
- Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course – official site of Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
- Map and circuit history at RacingCircuits.info
- Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course race results at Racing-Reference
- The Mid-Ohio School – official site of The Mid-Ohio School
- 1tail Resource Database: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course