RALEIGH, NC (WFXR/NASCAR) — Speedway Motorsports and NASCAR announced Thursday that, as part of NASCAR’s 75th anniversary season, the NASCAR All-Star Race will be held at historic North Wilkesboro Speedway on May 21, 2023.

“The NASCAR All-Star Race has always been the fans’ race, and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the fans during NASCAR’s 75th anniversary than returning to North Wilkesboro Speedway,” said Speedway Motorsports President and CEO Marcus Smith. “We couldn’t have made this happen without tremendous support from so many people including Gov. Cooper, our state legislature, NASCAR, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and of course, the people of Wilkes County. We’ve got a lot of work to do, but we’ve got the will to create something special alongside a community and hard-working staff that will get it done.”

In November of last year, an $18M allocation from federal American Rescue Plan funds was designated for infrastructure improvements at North Wilkesboro Speedway through the North Carolina state budget. Earlier this week, Wilkes County awarded construction contracts for the forthcoming work. The General Assembly has agreed in principal to provide a $4M economic grant next year toward additional facility improvements to host the 2023 NASCAR All-Star Race and future special events.

“It is wild as much as how that place has gotten. A lot of action in the last few months. To be having an all star race on the cup side. It is pretty crazy a year ago it had weeds on it. Now we are going to have our all star race there. I am excited I think it is going to be a great venue for us,” said Chase Briscoe.

North Wilkesboro, then a dirt track, hosted its first race in May of 1947. Over the next five decades, the 0.625-mile circuit hosted 93 NASCAR Cup Series races – its list of winners a variable who’s who of NASCAR royalty, including Richard Petty, Darrell Waltrip, Dale Earnhardt, Cale Yarborough and hometown hero Benny Parsons. Next year, the 39th running of the NASCAR All-Star Race will mark the first Cup Series event at North Wilkesboro Speedway since 1996.

NASCAR Hall of Famer and noted motorsports historian Dale Earnhardt Jr. has been a passionate supporter of the revitalization of North Wilkesboro Speedway.

“Some of my best memories as a little boy were going to North Wilkesboro,” said Earnhardt. “And it got even better when I raced there as a teenager. I never thought I’d see that place full again, and then I got to race there this summer in a late model before a full house. There’s just something special about it. I know the track, the fans, and the community will put on a show when we’re back with the Cup cars for the All-Star race.”