Virginia International Raceway – What Makes It Unique?

Written by International GT on . Posted in international gt

Virginia International Raceway.
A Circuit With A Past.

Click on the VIR logo above to register for the September 24-27 IGT event.

For most of you, when International GT returns to Virginia International Raceway on September 24-27, it won’t be your first visit to the iconic track. But what do you really know about the beautiful 3.2 mile circuit sitting on the border of Virginia and North Carolina?

1) When did VIR first open?

In August of 1957 the first race was held at the newly constructed Virginia International Raceway. The SCCA event was won in a Maserati 450S by a little known driver, at the time. However, you might just recognize the winner… Carroll Shelby.

2) Why is 1974 significant in the track’s history?

This was the year that the race track sadly closed due to the gas shortage crisis. The land would return to its roots as a farm then finally be unused and overgrown through the next 25 years.

3) When was Virginia International Raceway reopened for racing?

Real Estate developers Connie Nyholm and Harvey Siegel purchased the land in 1998 and renovated the circuit into a racing resort. The first race at the grandly refurbished facility was held in October 2000. In 2013 Harvey would retire leaving controlling ownership to Connie, one of the only female owners of a world-class professional racing circuit in the US.

4) When did the famous oak tree meet its demise?

One of the unique features of the VIR circuit was the huge 200-year-old oak tree inside the track between turns 11 and 12. The gentle giant was struck by lightning in July 2013 and fell to its demise. Since that time saplings have been planted for a new oak tree but drivers will attest that it’s not the same without the huge landmark!

5) Who receives credit for these famous quotes about Virginia International Raceway?
“One lap at VIR is like a hundred at Watkins Glen.” 
“If there is a heaven on earth it’s VIR.”

Carroll Shelby and Paul Newman

Above: The original poster for the first event held at VIR in 1957, won by Carroll Shelby in a Maserati 450S.Middle top: The track in 1998 after a 25-year hiatus from racing. Middle bottom: The track after its reopening in 2000 as America’s Racing Resort.Right top: The grand 200-year-old VIR Oaktree. A circuit landmark prior to falling in 2013 after a lightning storm.Right bottom: The spectacular VIR facility, one of the most beautiful in the US.Right: The current full course configuration which IGT will race on September 24-27. The 3.2 mile, 17-turn race course is located on the border of Virginia and North Carolina.

VIR Registration Is Open

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Question #6: Whose racy black and orange Porsche (above at VIR in 2019) is a regular in IGT Mission Foods GT3 Cup Trophy competition?

Brad Waite and his #37 Porsche is part of the IGT family and one of the original “Ohio Players” (as Ken Fengler refers to them) who joins us at many IGT events throughout the year!

Click on the #37 photo above to enter the VIR race. If you have any registration questions please contact Julie at or (770)380-7770.

Time To Order Your Pirellis For VIR

Now would be the perfect time to order your race tires from Frisby Tire. You can click on the Pirelli tire image above to be linked to their on-line order system or call (800)337-7390.


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  • Chassis #ZFF87EXX000231836
  • 6,671 KM
  • Competed in six Ferrari challenge races in 2019
  • Numerous top 5 finishes
  • Front passenger fender was replaced, other than that, no accidents or major damage. 
  • Extremely clean
  • Spare set of wheels included
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    Price: $239,000, OBO
    Contact: Hugh Plumb Team TGM

2020 Schedule

Updated August 2, 2020

Below is the updated 2020 schedule for International GT. Obviously there are no guarantees these days, however we are very confident that the events at VIR, Lime Rock, Road Atlanta and Daytona will all take place as scheduled.

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