New Hampshire Motor Speedway is the eighth track on the schedule that appears in both the regular season and the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Success in July usually means success in September. In 2012, seven drivers posted top-10 finishes in both New Hampshire events. A year ago, nine of the top-10 finishers in July's race made the Chase. Last year's top 10 in the standings following race number 19 all made the Chase on points.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway is a unique intermediate track that has a racing surface of asphalt and granite. It has variable banking from 2 degrees to 7 degrees in the turns and practically flat on the straightaways with one degree of banking.
This is a track with a tragic NASCAR history,
In 2000, it was the site of a pair of fatal accidents which took the lives of promising young drivers. In May, while practicing for a Busch Series race, Adam Petty died when his throttle stuck exiting the second turn, resulting in a full speed crash head-on in the middle of the third and fourth turns.
When the Winston Cup Series made their first appearance of the season, a similar fate befell 1998 Rookie of the Year Kenny Irwin, Jr.