|NASCAR Cup Series|
|Venue||Charlotte Motor Speedway|
|Location||Concord, North Carolina, United States|
|Distance||600 mi (965.606 km)|
|Laps||400 (All 4 stages: 100 each)|
|Previous names||World 600 (1960-1984)|
Coca-Cola World 600 (1985)
Coca-Cola 600 (1986-2001, 2003-)
Coca-Cola Racing Family 600 (2002)
|Most wins (driver)||Darrell Waltrip (5)|
|Most wins (team)||Hendrick Motorsports (11)|
|Most wins (manufacturer)||Chevrolet (24)|
|Length||1.5 mi (2.4 km)|
The Coca-Cola 600, originally the World 600, is an annual 600-mile (970 km) NASCAR Cup Series points race held at the Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina, during Memorial Day weekend. The first race, held in 1960, was also the first one held at the new Charlotte Motor Speedway. It is the longest race on NASCAR's schedule at 600 miles (970 km). It is unique for having track conditions that change throughout the race. It starts around 6:20 PM and the track is bathed in sunlight for the first third of the race. The second third happens at dusk, and the final third under the lights.
Brad Keselowski is the defending champion of the Coca-Cola 600.
In the spring of 1959, Curtis Turner returned to Charlotte, North Carolina, after viewing Bill France Sr.'s Daytona International Speedway and had an idea of building a race track in the surrounding area. Turner thought he could borrow enough money to build a $750,000 track with 45,000 permanent seats on his property in Cabarrus County, North Carolina. Afterward, he learned that a group led by Bruton Smith had a similar idea to build a track near Pineville.
Smith and Turner formed an alliance to build the track, and they signed a contract with NASCAR to run a 600-mile event on Memorial Day. Once the construction crew broke ground, they found a layer of granite under the topsoil, making the construction costly. The area for the first turn alone used $70,000 worth of dynamite, ballooning Turner's $750,000 construction plan to nearly two million dollars. In the spring of 1960, Turner begged for a six-week postponement of the race after a snow storm delayed the concrete pouring.
With two weeks remaining until the inaugural race, the paving subcontractor threatened to quit the job due to lack of payment. To keep him there, Turner and one of his friends threatened the subcontractor with a shotgun and a revolver to ensure the track's backstretch would be completed. The first event at the newly completed Charlotte Motor Speedway was held on June 19, 1960.
The event began as an attempt by NASCAR to stage a Memorial Day weekend event to compete with the open-wheel Indianapolis 500. It was not until 1974, however, that both races competed head-to-head on the same day. Before 1974, the two races were held on different days of the week, and on a few occasions, some drivers drove in both. They continued even after the Coca-Cola 600 was moved to the same day, albeit to a lesser degree. The first World 600 was held on June 16 due to construction delays of the completion of Charlotte Motor Speedway. The 2009 race, postponed by rain from its original May 24 date, was the first race to occur on Memorial Day itself.
After the installation of lights in 1992, fans asked circuit management to start the race later in the day because of the notorious North Carolina heat and humidity. They wanted to follow The Winston's popularity the previous week and switch the race to a nighttime finish to create cooler temperatures for spectators. The start time was moved back several times throughout the 1990s, and finally settled at 5:30 pm in 2001, to attempt to have the race finished by 10 pm ET, in time for local news on Fox affiliates.
With the new starting time came new challenges. Not only do race teams have to deal with the blistering Carolina heat, but the considerable temperature drop at night affects track conditions.
The nighttime portion of the race is lit with a system that uses parabolic reflectors so that dangerous glare that would otherwise be in the drivers' eyes is minimized. The move of the race to the early evening made it possible for drivers to do Double Duty - run the Indianapolis 500, then immediately fly from Indianapolis to Charlotte, and participate in the Coca-Cola 600. Experts disagreed over whether, for health and safety reasons, anyone should be allowed to race 1100 miles in one day, but no regulation has been set by any governing body to prevent it. From 2005 to 2010, the issue became moot when the state of Indiana finally decided to implement daylight saving time. This resulted in only an approximately one-hour interval between the end of the Indianapolis 500 and the start of the Coca-Cola 600. The Indianapolis 500 start time was moved back to noon Eastern in 2011, but only one attempt - by Kurt Busch in 2014 - has been made since then.
Until the Ferko lawsuit settlement took effect, the race was considered the third leg of the grand slam, and was once part of the Winston Million. It is considered one of the top five annual NASCAR races.
Beginning in 2017, NASCAR adopted the stage-racing format, dividing each of its top three division's races into three stages. Originally, the 600 was going to have stages 1 & 2 be 115 laps in length, with the third and final stage encompassing the remaining 170 laps. Just a few weeks before the race, the stage format for the race was changed with the addition of a fourth stage, and the race is divided into four uniform stages of 100 laps each. This makes it the only race on the schedule with four stages instead of three. If weather interferes, NASCAR's rule that a race becomes official after the conclusion of the second stage still applies. It also makes the Coca-Cola 600 the highest scoring race in terms of points a driver can collect. Usually if a driver sweeps all the stages and passes inspection they score 60 points (40 for winning, and 10 for the first two stages), but with 4 stages the maximum is 70 (which Kyle Busch accomplished in 2018).
From 1960 to 1984 the race was known as the World 600. In 1985, the race's name was changed to the Coca-Cola World 600. In 1986 the name was shortened to the Coca-Cola 600, or Coke 600 which it was referred to at the time. The name changed again in 2002 to the Coca-Cola Racing Family 600 referring to the Coca-Cola family of drivers who are sponsored by Coca-Cola. In 2003, the name returned to the Coca-Cola 600.
The Coca-Cola 600 has been the site of many drivers' first wins, including David Reutimann, Casey Mears, and future champions David Pearson (1961), Jeff Gordon (1994), Bobby Labonte (1995), and Matt Kenseth (2000). The most recent driver to have the 600 as his first win was Austin Dillon, who won in 2017.
|Year||Date||No.||Driver||Team||Manufacturer||Race Distance||Race Time||Average Speed
|1960||June 19*||89||Joe Lee Johnson||Paul McDuffie||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||5:34:06||107.735||Report|
|1961||May 28||3||David Pearson||John Masoni||Pontiac||400||600 (965.606)||5:22:29||111.633||Report|
|1962||May 27||29||Nelson Stacy||Holman-Moody||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:46:44||125.552||Report|
|1963||June 2*||28||Fred Lorenzen||Holman-Moody||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:31:52||132.417||Report|
|1964||May 24||41||Jim Paschal||Petty Enterprises||Plymouth||400||600 (965.606)||4:46:14||125.772||Report|
|1965||May 23||28||Fred Lorenzen||Holman-Moody||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:55:38||121.722||Report|
|1966||May 22||42||Marvin Panch||Petty Enterprises||Plymouth||400||600 (965.606)||4:26:35||135.042||Report|
|1967||May 28||14||Jim Paschal||Frieden Enterprises||Plymouth||400||600 (965.606)||4:25:02||135.832||Report|
|1968||May 26||3||Buddy Baker||Ray Fox||Dodge||255*||382.5 (615.574)||3:04:14||104.207||Report|
|1969||May 25||98||LeeRoy Yarbrough||Junior Johnson & Associates||Mercury||400||600 (965.606)||4:27:56||134.361||Report|
|1970||May 24||27||Donnie Allison||Banjo Matthews||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:37:36||129.68||Report|
|1971||May 30||12||Bobby Allison||Holman-Moody||Mercury||400||600 (965.606)||4:16:20||140.422||Report|
|1972||May 28||11||Buddy Baker||Petty Enterprises||Dodge||400||600 (965.606)||4:13:04||142.255||Report|
|1973||May 27||71||Buddy Baker||Nord Krauskopf||Dodge||400||600 (965.606)||4:26:53||134.89||Report|
|1974||May 26||21||David Pearson||Wood Brothers Racing||Mercury||360*||540 (869.045)||3:58:21||135.72||Report|
|1975||May 25||43||Richard Petty||Petty Enterprises||Dodge||400||600 (965.606)||4:07:42||145.327||Report|
|1976||May 30||21||David Pearson||Wood Brothers Racing||Mercury||400||600 (965.606)||4:22:06||137.352||Report|
|1977||May 29||43||Richard Petty||Petty Enterprises||Dodge||400||600 (965.606)||4:21:29||137.676||Report|
|1978||May 28||88||Darrell Waltrip||DiGard Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:20:12||138.355||Report|
|1979||May 27||88||Darrell Waltrip||DiGard Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:23:24||136.674||Report|
|1980||May 25||27||Benny Parsons||M. C. Anderson Racing||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||5:01:51||119.265||Report|
|1981||May 24||28||Bobby Allison||Ranier-Lundy||Buick||400||600 (965.606)||4:38:22||129.326||Report|
|1982||May 30||21||Neil Bonnett||Wood Brothers Racing||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:36:48||130.058||Report|
|1983||May 29||75||Neil Bonnett||RahMoc Enterprises||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:15:51||140.707||Report|
|1984||May 27||22||Bobby Allison||DiGard Motorsports||Buick||400||600 (965.606)||4:38:34||129.233||Report|
|1985||May 26||11||Darrell Waltrip||Junior Johnson & Associates||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:13:52||141.807||Report|
|1986||May 25||3||Dale Earnhardt||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:16:24||140.406||Report|
|1987||May 24||21||Kyle Petty||Wood Brothers Racing||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:33:48||131.483||Report|
|1988||May 29||17||Darrell Waltrip||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:49:15||124.46||Report|
|1989||May 28||17||Darrell Waltrip||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:09:52||144.077||Report|
|1990||May 27||27||Rusty Wallace||Blue Max Racing||Pontiac||400||600 (965.606)||4:21:32||137.65||Report|
|1991||May 26||28||Davey Allison||Robert Yates Racing||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:19:05||138.951||Report|
|1992||May 24||3||Dale Earnhardt||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:30:43||132.98||Report|
|1993||May 30||3||Dale Earnhardt||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:07:25||145.504||Report|
|1994||May 29||24||Jeff Gordon||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:18:10||139.445||Report|
|1995||May 28||18||Bobby Labonte||Joe Gibbs Racing||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||3:56:55||151.952||Report|
|1996||May 26||88||Dale Jarrett||Robert Yates Racing||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:03:56||147.581||Report|
|1997||May 25-26*||24||Jeff Gordon||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||333*||499.5 (803.867)||3:39:10||136.745||Report|
|1998||May 24||24||Jeff Gordon||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:23:53||136.424||Report|
|1999||May 30||99||Jeff Burton||Roush Racing||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||3:57:50||151.367||Report|
|2000||May 28||17||Matt Kenseth||Roush Racing||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:12:23||142.64||Report|
|2001||May 27||99||Jeff Burton||Roush Racing||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:20:40||138.107||Report|
|2002||May 26||6||Mark Martin||Roush Racing||Ford||400||600 (965.606)||4:21:23||137.729||Report|
|2003||May 25||48||Jimmie Johnson||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||276*||414 (666.268)||3:16:50||126.198||Report|
|2004||May 30||48||Jimmie Johnson||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:12:10||142.763||Report|
|2005||May 29||48||Jimmie Johnson||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||5:13:52||114.698||Report|
|2006||May 28||9||Kasey Kahne||Evernham Motorsports||Dodge||400||600 (965.606)||4:39:25||128.84||Report|
|2007||May 27||25||Casey Mears||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:36:27||130.222||Report|
|2008||May 25||9||Kasey Kahne||Gillett Evernham Motorsports||Dodge||400||600 (965.606)||4:25:09||135.772||Report|
|2009||May 25*||00||David Reutimann||Michael Waltrip Racing||Toyota||227*||340.5 (547.981)||2:48:59||120.899||Report|
|2010||May 30||2||Kurt Busch||Penske Racing||Dodge||400||600 (965.606)||4:08:20||144.966||Report|
|2011||May 29||29||Kevin Harvick||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||402*||603 (970.434)||4:33:14||132.414||Report|
|2012||May 27||5||Kasey Kahne||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||3:51:14||155.687||Report|
|2013||May 26||29||Kevin Harvick||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:35:49||130.521||Report|
|2014||May 25||48||Jimmie Johnson||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:07:27||145.484||Report|
|2015||May 24||19||Carl Edwards||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||400||600 (965.606)||4:03:34||147.803||Report|
|2016||May 29||78||Martin Truex Jr.||Furniture Row Racing||Toyota||400||600 (965.606)||3:44:05||160.655||Report|
|2017||May 28-29*||3||Austin Dillon||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet||400||600 (965.606)||4:19:22||138.8||Report|
|2018||May 27||18||Kyle Busch||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||400||600 (965.606)||4:23:22||136.692||Report|
|2019||May 26||19||Martin Truex Jr.||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota||400||600 (965.606)||4:50:09||124.074||Report|
|2020||May 24-25*||2||Brad Keselowski||Team Penske||Ford||405*||607.5 (977.467)||4:29:55||135.024||Report|
*1960: The race was moved by three weeks because of construction delays.
*1963 and 2009: The race was moved from Sunday to Monday because of rain.
*1968, 2003, and 2009: The race was shortened due to rain.
*1974: The race was shortened due to 1973-74 energy crisis.
*1997: The race was shortened due to a rain delay and a 1 a.m. noise ordinance. Finished at 12:57 AM on Monday.
*2011 and 2020: The race was lengthened due to a NASCAR overtime finish.
*2017: The race was broken up into four stages, as part of the new changes to race formats. Started on Sunday but finished at 12:30 AM on Monday due to a rain delay.
*1997, 2009, 2017 and 2020: The race was either run or finished on Memorial Day.
|# wins||Driver||Years won|
|5||Darrell Waltrip||1978, 1979, 1985, 1988, 1989|
|4||Jimmie Johnson||2003, 2004, 2005, 2014|
|3||Buddy Baker||1968, 1972, 1973|
|David Pearson||1961, 1974, 1976|
|Bobby Allison||1971, 1981, 1984|
|Dale Earnhardt||1986, 1992, 1993|
|Jeff Gordon||1994, 1997, 1998|
|Kasey Kahne||2006, 2008, 2012|
|2||Fred Lorenzen||1963, 1965|
|Jim Paschal||1964, 1967|
|Richard Petty||1975, 1977|
|Neil Bonnett||1982, 1983|
|Jeff Burton||1999, 2001|
|Kevin Harvick||2011, 2013|
|Martin Truex Jr.||2016, 2019|
|# wins||Team||Years won|
|11||Hendrick Motorsports||1988, 1989, 1994, 1997, 1998, 2003-2005, 2007, 2012, 2014|
|6||Richard Childress Racing||1986, 1992, 1993, 2011, 2013, 2017|
|5||Petty Enterprises||1964, 1966, 1972, 1975, 1977|
|4||Holman-Moody||1962, 1963, 1965, 1971|
|Wood Brothers Racing||1974, 1976, 1982, 1987|
|Joe Gibbs Racing||1995, 2015, 2018, 2019|
|3||DiGard Motorsports||1978, 1979, 1984|
|2||Junior Johnson & Associates||1969, 1985|
|Robert Yates Racing||1991, 1996|
|Gillett Evernham Motorsports||2006, 2008|
|Team Penske||2010, 2020|
|# wins||Manufacturer||Years won|
|24||Chevrolet||1960, 1978-1980, 1983, 1985, 1986, 1988, 1989, 1992-1995, 1997, 1998, 2003-2005, 2007, 2011-2014, 2017|
|13||Ford||1962, 1963, 1965, 1970, 1982, 1987, 1991, 1996, 1999-2002, 2020|
|8||Dodge||1968, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 2006, 2008, 2010|
|5||Toyota||2009, 2015, 2016, 2018, 2019|
|4||Mercury||1969, 1971, 1974, 1976|
|3||Plymouth||1964, 1966, 1967|
|Year||Date||No.||Driver||Team||Manufacturer||Race distance||Race time||Average speed
|1961||May 21||43||Richard Petty||Petty Enterprises||Plymouth||67||100.5 (161.739)||0:45:09||133.554||Report|
|8||Joe Weatherly||Bud Moore Engineering||Pontiac||67||100.5 (161.739)||0:52:18||115.591||Report|
|1963||June 1||30||Bunkie Blackburn||Fred Clark||Chevrolet||20||30 (48.28)||0:17:30||102.857||Report|
Due to schedule changes resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, Charlotte Motor Speedway hosted an additional 500-kilometer race called the Alsco Uniforms 500 on the Wednesday following the Coca-Cola 600. It was run as a replacement for the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway after the track announced that NASCAR had cancelled its events at the road course due to the pandemic.
|Year||Date||No.||Driver||Team||Manufacturer||Race Distance||Race Time||Average Speed
|2020||May 28*||9||Chase Elliott||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet||208||312 (502.008)||2:29:23||125.315||Report|
*2020: The race was moved from Wednesday to Thursday because of rain.
|1970||ABC||Keith Jackson||Chris Economaki|
|1982||Mizlou||Dave Despain||Dick Brooks|
|1983||Ken Squier||Phil Parsons|
|1984||Mike Joy||Donnie Allison|
|1988||TBS||Ken Squier||Johnny Hayes|
|2001||Fox||Mike Joy||Darrell Waltrip|