Stock car racing – the largest spectator sport in the USA

Stock car racing is a popular and widespread motor sport in the USA. Looking back in the history stock car racing was born in the Southern Appalachians and has a colorful past. The first formally organized competitions going back to the early 1930s. Each weekend, stock car races attract thousands of spectators. Desoto Speedway in Bradenton Florida is one of the popular race tracks at the west coast of the Sunshine State. The speedway was constructed in the early 1970s and is a 3/8-mile paved oval with 12 degree banking through the turns. Desoto Speedway is a perfect playground to document this largest spectator sport in the USA.

Gladiator battles on the race track

The resulting images show an insight of a weekly ritual from truck, pure stock, street stock, legend and bomber races. These races celebrate the exhibition of a fight between human being and technology. They are an exit from everyday life and thus from the monotonous reality. This results in an artificial game between spectators and fighters on the circuit between life and death. This is comparable to the gladiatorial battles in ancient Rome. In this sense, some races are listed by their organizers as Gladiator Endurance, Auto Racing Series or Gladiator Racing Series. More images are shown in the projects section.