Texas World Speedway was built in 1969 and is one of only seven superspeedways of two miles (3 km) or greater in the United States used for racing, the others being Indianapolis, Daytona, Pocono, Talladega, Auto Club, and Michigan (there are several tracks of similar size used for vehicle testing). TWS is located on approximately 600 acres (2.4 km²) on State Highway 6 in College Station, Texas. There is a 2-mile (3 km) oval, and several road course configurations. The full oval configuration is closely related to that of Michigan and is often considered the latter's sister track, featuring steeper banking, at 22 degrees in the turns, 12 degrees at the start/finish line, and only 2 degrees along the backstretch, compared to Michigan's respective 18, 12, and 5 degrees. The last major race occurred at the track in 1981. The track is still used by amateur racing clubs such as the SCCA, NASA, Porsche Club of America, Corinthian Vintage Auto Racing, CMRA, driving schools and car clubs, as well as hosting music concerts and the like.
During the 1980s the track fell into a state of disrepair, and both NASCAR and the IndyCar Series chose to drop it from the schedule. It continued to operate in a limited role for amateur racing. In 1991 Ishin Speed Sport, Inc. purchased the facility and repaved and refurbished it. It hosted races for the ARCA series but after 1993 the company withdrew and the facility has since served as a circuit for amateur and club racing, along with private testing, and also hosts NASCAR teams' testing for Michigan International Speedway and California Speedway because of NASCAR conducting new 2006 restrictions prohibiting both tracks from being used for tests. With the 2009 NASCAR testing ban, the track expects more testing in the three national series because the track is not on any of the three circuits, and therefore is legal.
During a January 2009 test, Greg Biffle managed to reach a top speed of 218 mph (351 km/h) in a test for Roush Fenway Racing as part of evading NASCAR's testing ban. This became the fastest speed ever achieved on this track by a stock car (amateur or professional). The average speed for the full lap was 195 mph (314 km/h).
On February 3, 1993, Jeff Andretti set the (then) unofficial closed-course speed record for IndyCars of 234.5 MPH, the fastest speed ever recorded at Texas World Speedway, while testing for the 1993 Indianapolis 500. Marking his first time back in an IndyCar since he lost a wheel and crashed head-on into the wall, smashing both his legs, in a horrific crash during the 1992 Indianapolis 500, Andretti's fast run came at the conclusion of two days of testing where he consistently posted laps in the 230 MPH range. Andretti's Buick-powered Lola was prepared by Pagan Racing of Corpus Christi, Texas.
Texas World Speedway was also the site of Willie Nelson's 1974 4th of July Picnic with Willie Nelson and his guests Jimmy Buffett, Townes Van Zandt, and Kinky Friedman performing as well. It was also known for a fire that destroyed several cars including one owned by Robert Earl Keen The cover of Robert's album, Picnic, shows a picture of his car on fire at the picnic.