History Of Brickyard 400
Curious about the history of the Brickyard 400? NASCAR's Brickyard 400 is held annually at one of the most historic tracks in the world, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indiana. A top event in the Sprint Cup circuit, the Brickyard 400 is named for the yard of bricks at the start/finish line, an homage to the track's early days when it was paved with bricks.
The first rumblings of a NASCAR event at the famed speedway came in 1992. Nine Cup Series drivers and teams were invited by Goodyear to do a tire test at Indy. Thousands of spectators watched the two-day test, which included Indy legend A.J. Foyt taking laps around the track in Dale Earnhardt's car. NASCAR president Bill France Jr. and Indianapolis Motor Speedway president Tony George announced on April 14, 1993, that the first Brickyard 400 would take place on August 6, 1994. This first race was held on a Saturday, as the track wanted the cushion of a built-in rain date (Sunday). The Brickyard 400 was moved to a NASCAR-traditional Sunday slot in 2001.
The first Brickyard 400 saw Rick Mast grab the pole and lead the first-ever NASCAR lap at the "Brickyard." Jeff Gordon, then a youngster in his sophomore season in the Cup Series, won the inaugural race, and has the most victories in the Brickyard 400 with four (1994, 1998, 2001 and 2004). Gordon is also the youngest winner of the race at 23; Bill Elliott won the 2002 Brickyard 400 at age 46, making him the oldest winner. Tony Stewart, a two-time winner of the Brickyard 400 (2005 and 2007), was the first Indiana native to win at the speedway since 1940, when Wilbur Shaw won the Indy 500. The 2008 and 2009 races were won by Jimmie Johnson, the only driver to win consecutive Brickyard 400s.