RIDGEWAY, Va. (WFXR) — The Martinsville Speedway — which was founded in 1947 by H. Clay Earles — is the only track that has hosted NASCAR Cup Series races every year since the division’s inception in 1949.

At just over half a mile in length, the Martinsville Speedway website says it is the shortest track on the NASCAR Cup Series circuit. However, thanks to its small size, tight corners, and unique shape, the speedway – nicknamed ‘the Paperclip’ – offers some of the most exciting and close-quarters racing in the sport.

The speedway’s size also allows fans to be closer to the action than any other track on the circuit. Officials say the cars at the Martinsville Speedway are never more than a few hundred yards away, sometimes seeming close enough to reach out and touch them.

In addition, the track is reportedly one of the most modern, with high-rise aluminum chair back seating, corporate and fan suites, and state-of-the-art facilities for the media.

Since the Martinsville Speedway is now owned by NASCAR, it conducts three major race event weekends each year. For example, the track annually hosts the NASCAR Cup Series races in the spring and in the fall; the NASCAR Xfinity Series in the fall; the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in the fall; the NASCAR Whelen Modified Series race in spring; and the ValleyStar Credit Union 300, NASCAR’s biggest, richest and most prestigious Late Model Stock Car race.