In North American auto racing, particularly with regard to NASCAR, a short track is a racetrack of less than one mile (1.6km) in length. Short track racing, often associated with fairgrounds and similar venues, is where stock car racing first got off of the back roads and into organized and regulated competition. Many traditional fans and purists still see short track racing as the "real" NASCAR, because the lower speeds make "paint swapping", where the bodies of the cars actually rub against one another, practical without a very high likelihood of serious accidents.
In recent years, there has been a gradual push away from short track venues for Sprint Cup (the highest level of NASCAR) in favor of longer tracks. This is due to larger venues having accommodations for more fans (although the short track in Bristol, Tennessee, Bristol Motor Speedway, now has over 160,000 seats) and higher speeds.