Different Types of Auto Racing

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auto racing

Racing has been one of the most exciting forms of sports competition the human race has ever created. In the case of automotive racing, there are various types that attract unique groups of enthusiasts.

Here are the different types of auto racing:

1. Formula racing

Formula racing is probably the most famous professional form of car racing. It’s a form of single-seater, open-wheel circuit racing wherein the vehicle’s wheels are located outside the body. The cars are custom-designed and built, and races are conducted in separate circuit tracks constructed for formula racing.

The most prestigious and well-known formula racing event would be Formula One’s Monaco Grand Prix. In North America, the leading formula racing event is the IndyCar Series, and its most famous division is the Indianapolis 500.

2. Sports car racing

Sports cars are two-seater vehicles with enclosed wheels with two types: the grand tourers (GT), or production-derived models, and the prototype, or purpose-built cars designed to compete on closed circuits.

The leading championship series for sports car racing is the FIA World Endurance Championship, with FIA GT1 World Championship as its main series for GT car racing. In the United States, the Grand-Am with its own Rolex Sports Car Series endurance racing is also popular.

3. Stock car racing

Popular mostly in the United States, stock car racing uses production cars that have customized specifications for racing purposes. It is usually done in oval tracks, wherein racers are pushed to the limits over tremendous amounts of laps.

For stock racing, the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) is the largest governing body, which organizes premier racing events such as the Sprint Cup Series, Daytona 500 and the Southern 500.

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4. Drag racing

One of the most basic forms of the sport, drag racing is a straight line competition done of streets or tracks involving the racing stunt called dragging. Cars involved can range from usual cars to the purposely built dragsters, and their aim is to accelerate as fast as possible to beat opponents. Drag racing is held on a short distance track, generally in 200 meters or 400 meters.

The main governing body for drag racing is the National Hot Rod Association, with divisions such as Super Stock, Super Street, Top Sportsman, and Top Dragster.

5. Rallying

Involving production-based cars, rallying is conducted on closed public roads or off-road areas with varying road widths, terrain or weather conditions. The courses wherein rallying takes place are either made of gravel, asphalt, snow, and ice. Racers usually run in a point-to-point format, leaving in regular intervals from start points.

The top regulatory body for rallying is the World Rally Championship.

6. Off-road racing

As the name suggests, off-road racing is conducted in off-road environments such as sand, mud, riverbeds, snow or other natural terrains. Vehicles used in this type of racing are from various classes, such as production cars, trucks and motorcycles, and it is usually recreational.

One notable example of off-road races is the Baja 1000 in Mexico.

7. Touring car racing

Touring car racing is conducted using production-derived race cars from different companies with similar performance specifications. It is only held in special race tracks and is popular in UK, Europe, and Australia.

Major touring car racing events worldwide include World Touring Car Championship, British Touring Car Championship, and the Supercars Championship.

8. Production car racing

This type of racing is also known as showroom stock racing where unmodified cars compete with each other. It is the most economical type of racing because of its restricted rules.

Several production car racing series run around the world, such as those by Audi and Porsche, as well as Japan’s Super Taikyu and the previous International Motor Sports Association’s Firehawk Series.

9. One-make racing

One-make or single marque racing involves the same types of cars from one automotive company or even a single model from the manufacturer.  They may have custom rims and other cool upgrades for racing as well.

Some examples of racing competitions of this type are the series from the Mini 7 Championship, the John Cooper Mini Challenge, Porsche Supercup, Formula Renault, and Formula BMW.

10. Monster truck racing

Monster truck racing is mostly held for entertainment and is typically conducted on the arena with tracks.

The Monster Jam is the premier monster truck racing event which is televised in the United States. It is governed under the United States Hot Rod Association.


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