Traditional race fans got a pleasant surprise last Thursday morning when the announcement was made that the Southern 500 would be returning to the NASCAR Sprint Cup schedule, in name at least, at Darlington Raceway in South Carolina in 2009.
The Southern 500 was one of the races that helped build NASCAR into what it is today. But a desire to cash in on a supposed goldmine of fans in California (that has since failed to materialize) saw Darlington’s traditional date go to the California Speedway in 2003. The Southern 500 event itself, after a one-year run in November, was done away with in 2005.
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