CONCORD, N.C. (WGHP) — Owner and CEO of Speedway Motorsports Inc. Bruton Smith has died at the age of 95, Charlotte Motor Speedway confirmed on Twitter on Wednesday.
Smith was a titan in the NASCAR world, having bought Charlotte Motor Speedway for $1.5 million in 1959. Smith was also the founder and executive chairman of Sonic Automotive and Speedway Children’s Charities.
Smith founded Speedway Motorsports Inc. in Dec. 1994 and today the company owns and operates the following racetracks:
- Atlanta Motor Speedway
- Bristol Motor Speedway
- Charlotte Motor Speedway
- Las Vegas Motor Speedway
- New Hampshire Motor Speedway
- Sonoma Raceway
- Texas Motor Speedway
- Dover Motor Speedway
- Nashville Superspeedway
- North Wilkesboro Speedway
- Kentucky Speedway
Smith founded Sonic Automotive in Jan. 1997 and it’s now one of the nation’s largest automotive retailers with over 160 dealerships across 23 states.
“You have trophies, you have championships, you have wins, but friends are what really make the difference,” fellow NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Darrell Waltrip said about Smith in 2019. “Bruton Smith has been one of my heroes since I started racing in NASCAR in 1972.”
Smith founded Speedway’s Children’s Charities in 1982 in honor of his son, Bruton Cameron Smith, who died at a young age. The charity has distributed over $61 million to local organizations across the nation to help children in need.
Information on funeral arrangements will be made at a later date.