Seventy years ago, stock car racers took to the Daytona Beach-Road Course to make a historic run: the first race of NASCAR’s inaugural season. That year, 1948, proved to be a defining one for the sport, foreshadowing both the accomplishments and the adversity the organization would face in the decades to come.
In celebration of this landmark anniversary, the NASCAR Hall of Fame’s temporary exhibit “1948: Proving Grounds” delves deeper than ever before into this inaugural season’s significance to American and motorsports history. Return to a time of dirt tracks and prewar coupes, when drivers, track operators, and those who led NASCAR were redefining motorsports creating what would become America’s longest-running auto racing sanctioning body.
Rare artifacts (some of the Hall of Fame’s oldest) are featured alongside cars from the era. Throughout the exhibit, straight-from-the-track stories of daring and grit transport guests to the 1940s, inviting them to experience firsthand the thrill of the race.
Photos by Kyo H Nam Photography.
"1948: Proving Grounds" exhibit included with admission to the NASCAR Hall of Fame.