Bryant McMurray Motorsports Photographs

Atlanta Motor Speedway
Located in Hampton, Georgia, some 20 miles south of Atlanta, the Atlanta Motor Speedway opened in 1960. First known as the Atlanta International Raceway, it was renamed the Atlanta Motor Speedway after Bruton Smith purchased it in October 1990.
Bristol Motor Speedway
The Bristol Motor Speedway first opened in Bristol, Tennessee, in 1961 under the name Bristol International Speedway. It changed its name to Bristol International Raceway in the spring of 1978, not long after it was sold to businessmen Lanny Hester and Gary Baker. On May 28, 1996, the track's name was officially changed to Bristol Motor Speedway.
Charlotte Motor Speedway
Located in Concord, North Carolina, Charlotte Motor Speedway was designed and built by Bruton Smith and stock car driver Curtis Turner in 1959. Soon afterwards, the track succumbed to Chapter 11 reorganization. Smith parted ways with the speedway in 1962 to pursue other opportunities in Texas and Illinois but gradually began buying shares of stock in the speedway until he became majority stockholder in 1975. He then hired Humpy Wheeler as general manager. Together the two began an ambitious expansion and improvement program, constructing new grandstands and later a permanent lighting system around the speedway's track. The track was completely repaved in 2006. It changed its name to Lowe's Motor Speedway in 1998, reverting to its former and current name in 2009. Among the notable races held at the track are the World 600 (later the Coca-Cola 600), the National 500, the IMSA GT Championship, and the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race.
Darlington International Raceway
Founded by Harold Brasington, a retired stock car driver who was inspired by the example of Daytona International Speedway to build a similar track in South Carolina, the Darlington International Raceway opened in 1950. It is colloquially known as "The Lady in Black" due to its blacktop racing surface and its difficulty. The track has hosted races such as the Rebel 400 and the Southern 500.
Daytona International Speedway
Home of the Daytona 500, the most illustrious NASCAR race, the Daytona International Speedway was built in Daytona Beach, Florida, in 1959 by NASCAR founder Bill France, Sr. Initially constructed to host races that were formerly held at the Daytona Beach Road Course, the track also hosts ARCA, AMA Superbike, SCCA, USCC, and Motocross races.
Dover International Speedway
Known as "The Monster Mile," the Dover International Speedway opened with the name Dover Downs International Speedway in Dover, Delaware, in 1969. It has hosted NASCAR races such as the Mason-Dixon 300 and the Delaware 500 as well as USAC and Verizon IndyCar Series events. Exactly one mile in length, the track is one of three concrete racetracks (the others are Bristol Motor Speedway and Nashville Superspeedway) used in NASCAR's three main racing series.
Hickory Motor Speedway
Known colloquially as the "Birthplace of the NASCAR Stars," the Hickory Motor Speedway opened in 1951 as a half-mile dirt track. Among the drivers who became champions during the track's first decade were Ned Jarrett, Junior Johnson, and Ralph Earnhardt. The speedway began hosting NASCAR Grand National Series events in 1953; Tim Flock won the first race. Reconfigured several times during its history, the track was dropped from the Grand National schedule in 1971 after R.J. Reynolds, then the sponsor of the series, eliminated races under 250 miles. Though it remained popular as a venue for NASCAR Late Model Sportsman events, the speedway hosted progressively fewer major races during the 1980s and 1990s. In 1998 it was dropped from the Winston Cup schedule. It remains a venue for NASCAR's club racing division.
Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Located in Speedway, Indiana, a suburb of Indianapolis, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is the highest-capacity sports venue in the world, with an estimated seating capacity of 235,000. The speedway was constructed in 1909. It hosts the Brickyard 400 and the Indianapolis 500, which was first held at the speedway in 1911.
Martinsville Speedway
Built in 1947 by H. Clay Earles, the Martinsville Speedway was one of the first oval tracks in NASCAR. It has hosted a NASCAR event every year since its opening in 1948. Consisting of 800-feet straightaways and short, tight, treacherous turns, the track is one of the shortest in NASCAR at just over a half-mile in length. It has hosted races such as the Old Dominion 500 and the STP 500.
Metrolina Speedway
Now defunct, the Metrolina Speedway was established in Charlotte, North Carolina, soon after the Metrolina Expo Trade Center was created in 1960. The track never hosted any Sprint Cup events, though it was the site of several important secondary NASCAR events after the track was paved for a short time in the early 1970s.
Ontario Motor Speedway
The only track built to accommodate major races sanctioned by all four dominant racing sanctioning bodies (USAC, NASCAR, NHRA, and FIA), the Ontario Motor Speedway opened in Ontario, California, in August 1970. Among the racing events it hosted are the Los Angeles Times 500, the Miller High Life 500, and the Questor Grand Prix. The track was purchased for real estate development and demolished in 1981.
Pocono Raceway
Located in Long Pond, Pennsylvania, the Pocono Raceway--also known as the "Tricky Triangle" because of its unusual triangular or "roval" shape and severe turns--opened in 1971 as the Pocono International Raceway. The track has hosted NASCAR events such as the Purolator 500 and the NASCAR Xfinity Series as well as Indy Car races and ARCA Racing Series events. 2.5 miles in length, the track was designed by Indy 500 winner Roger Ward and has a distinctive design that features challenging turns modeled on turns at other prominent speedways such as the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Milwaukee Mile.
Road Atlanta
Road Atlanta, a 2.54-mile road course located near Braselton, Georgia, first opened in 1970 and quickly attracted top-level racing series including Can-Am, Trans-Am, IMSA Camel GT, and Formula 5000. After a period of unstable management that culminated in bankruptcy in 1993, the track underwent major refurbishments in the late 1990s and resumed hosting major racing events in 1998 with the first edition of the Petit Le Mans endurance race. NASCAR purchased the track in 2012 as part of its acquisition of the Panoz Motorsports Group.
Rockingham Speedway
First known as North Carolina Motor Speedway and later as the North Carolina Speedway, Rockingham Speedway opened as a one-mile track in Rockingham, North Carolina, in 1965. Among the races it hosted were the Peach Blossom 500 (later known as the Carolina 500) and the American 500, both Grand National Series events. Declining attendance eventually led to the track's closure in 2004. Since reopening in 2008, the track has hosted the ARCA Racing Series, also known as the American 200.
Bryant McMurray Oral History Interviews
In this sequence of interviews, Bryant McMurray--photojournalist, sports photographer, skilled raconteur--discusses his lifelong involvement with the motorsports industry and his work as a photographer and entrepreneur. Topics covered include his early days as a freelancer, the pioneering techniques he developed to market his photographs, technical and psychological aspects of his trade, and the diverse events he covered as a photojournalist, which ranged from NASCAR races to the 1974 crash of Eastern Airlines Flight 212 to the visit of President Reagan to Charlotte Motor Speedway.