Travel Diary
October 6, 2002
Watkins Glen, NY

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The next major town to our north from here is Watkins Glen, NY. Watkins Glen is referred to as the home to American road racing. It's a cute little town where from 1948 to 1952 they actually used to have road races through the town streets. Now, the town has a racing drivers walk of fame, and some lovely racing murals.

Fittipaldi plaque

Graham Hill plaque

Mural on building

Watkins Glen Racetrack started hosting the races in 1953. "The Glen" was home to the US Grand Prix from 1961 to 1980. It is one of the few road courses to host a current Winston Cup series NASCAR event.

Watkins Glen race track entrance

We went to visit the track and there was a driving school event going on. We weren't allowed inside the track, but we could see the cars on track from outside of gate 6.

Watkins Glen is also home to the International Motor Racing Research Center. They have a vast library of holdings including official race programs, motor racing periodicals, and books. For perspective, they had the Formula One annual called Autocourse. The amazing thing was that they had Autocourse from 2001 all the way back to 1951. All of the materials are available for viewing, although some of the older volumes were by request. The librarian said that journalists and authors have come from all over the world to use materials from their collection. See them online at

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