Miller 500 (Busch race)

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Miller 500
Venue Martinsville Speedway
Sponsor Miller Brewing Company
First race 1970 (as Modified-Late Model doubleheader)
1982 (as Xfinity race)
Last race 1994 (as Xfinity race)
1997 (as Late Model race)
Distance 157.8 miles (254.0 km)
Laps 300
Previous names Dogwood 500 (1982)
Miller Time 250 (1983-1984)
Miller 200 (1985)
Miller Classic (1988-1991)
Miller 500 (1986-1987, 1992-1994)

The Miller 500 was a NASCAR Busch Series stock car race held at Martinsville Speedway, in Martinsville, Virginia. It was first held as a Late Model Sportsman and Modified doubleheader in 1970, and in 1982 the Late Model Sportsman feature changed to a touring format for the original 1982 Budweiser Late Model Sportsman season, and stayed as a touring race until 1994. Following the 1994 season, both of Martinsville's race, the Miller 500 and the Advance Auto 500, were converted to Late Model only races. The March Late Model race was discontinued at the end of the 1997 season.

The race changed distances several times in its history. When first held in 1970, the Late Model Sportsman and Modified features were both 250 laps, covering 131.2 miles (211.1 km). Following the addition of local Late Models and the conversion of the Modified race into part of the NASCAR's regional touring series in 1985, the two touring races were decreased to 200 laps, 105.2 miles (169.3 km) with a 100 lap, 52.6 miles (84.7 km) Late Model feature, where it remained until the Modifieds were removed for the 1993 season, when the distance was increased to 300 laps, 157.8 miles (254.0 km) for the touring Busch Grand National cars, and 200 laps, 105.2 miles (169.3 km) for the Late Model race. When the race format became strictly Late Model only, the qualifying races and Late Model feature (25 lap heat races and last chance race) totaled 300 laps. The race was discontinued after the 1997 season, and only the fall race was held for Late Models.

The race was never 500 laps, miles, or kilometers in distance at any point in its history. The "500" originated from Martinsville's two traditional combination Late Model and/or Modified races that resulted in a 500 lap format:

  • 1970-84: 250 laps, co-featured with Modifieds
  • 1985-91: 200 laps, co-featured with the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, and 100 laps Late Model racing
  • 1992-94: 300 laps, and 200 laps Late Model racing

Past winners[edit]

Year Date Driver Team Manufacturer Race Distance Race Time Average Speed
(mph)
Laps Miles (km)
1982 March 28 Sam Ard Thomas Brothers Racing Oldsmobile 250 131.25 (211.226) 67.244
1983 March 20 Sam Ard Thomas Brothers Racing Oldsmobile 250 131.25 (211.226) 2:05:46 62.682
1984 March 25 Jack Ingram Jack Ingram Racing Pontiac 250 131.5 (211.628) 1:42:16 77.751
1985 April 6 Brett Bodine Hendrick Motorsports Pontiac 200 105.2 (169.302) 1:43:08 61.202
1986 March 23 Morgan Shepherd Whitaker Racing Pontiac 200 105.2 (169.302) 1:30:42 69.592
1987 March 22 Brad Teague Charlie Henderson Chevrolet 200 105.2 (169.302) 1:36:36 65.229
1988 March 13 Jimmy Hensley Sam Ard Buick 200 105.2 (169.302) 1:29:52 70.237
1989 March 12 Tommy Ellis J&J Racing Buick 200 105.2 (169.302) 1:39:12 63.629
1990 March 11 Tommy Houston Houston Racing Buick 200 105.2 (169.302) 1:38:18 64.212
1991 March 10 Jimmy Hensley Beverly Racing Oldsmobile 200 105.2 (169.302) 1:32:04 68.559
1992 March 22 Kenny Wallace Rusty Wallace Racing Pontiac 200 105.2 (169.302) 1:26:12 73.225
1993 May 8 Ward Burton A.G. Dillard Motorsports Buick 300 157.8 (253.954) 2:14:59 70.142
1994 March 20 Terry Labonte Labonte Motorsports Chevrolet 300 157.8 (253.954) 2:12:25 71.511

References[edit]