All roads lead to the Daytona 500 and the start of a new NASCAR season.
But check that map and you’ll also see some side roads leading to a couple of local hamlets known as Samsula and Barberville. Starting this week, all you have to do is follow the nighttime roar of racing engines.
Nope, not all of the February racing takes place at Daytona International Speedway. Many fans and many racers also head to our two local short tracks — and some even visit there exclusively.
In Samsula you’ll find the half-mile paved oval at New Smyrna Speedway, where the 18- and 20-degree banking facilitates plenty of speed. The track’s annual “World Series of Asphalt Stock-Car Racing” runs from Feb. 8-17.
About a half-hour north is Barberville and Volusia Speedway Park, which bills itself at “the world’s fastest half-mile.” Not sure about that, but with its 14-degree turns, the clay track is plenty fast, especially when occupied by the high-powered sprint cars over the coming two weeks.
Volusia’s DirtCar Nationals begins Monday night and runs through Feb. 17. Here’s the short-track rundown.
Volusia Speedway Park, Barberville
Feb. 5-17: Federated Auto Parts DirtCar Nationals. Series on the schedule include DirtCar UMP Modifieds, World of Outlaws Sprints, DirtCar Late Models, USAC Non-winged Sprints, Super DirtCar Series, World of Outlaws Late Models.
More information: VolusiaSpeedwayPark.com
New Smyrna Speedway
Feb. 8: World Series practice night.
Feb. 9-17: World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing. Divisions include Super Late Models, Pro Late Models, Modifieds, ASA Stars National Series.
More information: NewSmyrnaSpeedway.org