Board Track Racing History

Wooden tracks, originally built for bicycle racing, provided a very dangerous environment for racers and spectators alike. As the sport grew, larger tracks were built and used until the planks deteriorated to the point where it became too dangerous to race.

Akron-Cleveland Speedway - Akron, OH - 1926-30 - The ½ mile wood oval was located 7 miles south of Akron. During the Great Depression the wood track vanished as it was stolen piece by piece and used for building or burned as heat in nearby homes. The track was actually in Northhampton Township which has since been incorporated into Akron.

Altoona Speedway - Tipton, PA - 1923-31 - The 1.25 mile wood oval was located 12 miles north of Altoona on US 220, it was destroyed by fire on in 1936 and is now home to a ball field.

Atlantic City Speedway - Hammonton, NJ - 1926-28 - 1.5 mile wood oval was considered the fastest of the board tracks. The site is now location for Troop A of the New Jersey State Police.

Baltimore-Washington Speedway - Laurel, MD- 1925-1926 - It was a 1.25 mile wood oval.

Beverly Hills Speedway - Beverly Hills, CA - 1920-24 - 1.25 wood oval was located on Wilshire Blvd at the current site of the Beverly Hills-Wilshire Hotel.

Cincinnati Motor Speedway - Cincinnati, OH - 1916-19 - 2-mile oval was dismantled and the lumber used in construction of Camp Sherman during WWI. A U.S. Post Office and other businesses now occupy the site.

Charlotte Speedway - Charlotte, NC - 1924-27 - The 1.25 mile wood oval surface deteriorated after a few years and the owners closed rather than do repairs.

Culver City Speedway - Culver City, CA - 1924-27 - 1.25 mile wood oval is now the sit for a movie studio.

Des Moines Speedway - Des Moines, IA - 1915-16 - The 1-mile wooden track is rumored to live on in the nearby barns and other wooden buildings built during that time when the track was dismantled to pay creditors.

Fresno Speedway - Fresno, CA - 1920-27 - The 1-mile wood oval was also known as the Raisin Day Speedway. Several dirt tracks were located on this site in later years.

Kansas City Speedway - Kansas City, MO - 1922-24 - The 1.25 mile wood oval cost $500,000 to build. Site became a Pratt and Whitney airplane engine plant during WWII and later a Bendix Company factory.

Los Angeles Coliseum - Los Angeles, CA - 1909 - 1/3 mile board track.

Los Angeles Motordrome - Playa Del Ray, CA - 1910-13 - The 1-mile circle was destroyed by a major fire.

Maywood - Chicago, IL - 2 mile wood oval - 1915-18 - An opening day crowd of 85,000 gathered at the site that is now the Loyola Medical Center complex on the NW side of Chicago.

Miami-Fulford Speedway - Miami, FL - 1926 - The 1.25 mile wood oval only featured one race before it was destroyed by a hurricane. The wood was used in rebuilding the town of Miami Beach.

Oakland Motordrome - Oakland, CA - 1911-12 - The ½ mile circular track was a downsized copy of Playa Del Ray. It was located in the town of Elmhurst which has since been consolidated into Oakland.

Omaha Speedway- Omaha, NB - 1915-17 - The 1.25 mile wood oval was only used a few times before it broke up during a race in 1917.

Pacific Coast Speedway - Tacoma, WA - 1915-22 - This 2-mile wood oval was 7 miles south of town. The site became an airport in 1935 and is now a vocational school.

Pittsburgh-Bridgeville Speedway - Bridgeville, PA - 1927-30 - The ½ mile wood oval was on the west edge of town on SR 50 and the site is now the Burgunder Motors car dealership.

Rockingham Speedway - Salem, NH - 1925-28 - The 1.25 mile wood oval was later turned into a horse racing track.

Sheepshead Bay Speedway - Sheepshead Bay, NY - 1915-19 - The 2-mile board track is believed to be the site of the only film made of board track racing. It’s now the site of a housing development.

Greater San Francisco Speedway - San Carlos, CA - 1921-22 - 1.25 mile wood oval drew 40,000 fans to the first race but it was destroyed by fire on June 19, 1922 and is now the site of an airport.

Uniontown Speedway - Uniontown, PA - 1916-22 - 1.125-mile wood oval. The site later became a golf driving range.


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