Type: Oval Track
Length: 3/8 Mile
Race Days: Racing on Saturdays, March through September.
Gate: Pits open at 5:00pm. Gates open at 6:00pm. Racing starts at 8:30pm.
Divisions: Four Cylinders, Late Model Dirt, Stock Car
Seating: Bench Style Seating
Parking: On Site Parking is Free
Carry-In Policy: Coolers Allowed - Beer Allowed / No Glass
Alcohol Policy: Available On Site
Smoking Policy: Designated Areas Only
Chair Policy: Outside Chairs Allowed
Camping: Available On Site
Security: Private Security On Site
Adult Tickets: $12.00
Kid Tickets: Free (12 and under)
Senior Discount: Yes
Military Discount: Yes
Payment Options: Cash Only
ATM On Site: No
Contact Us for updates/corrections to this track info.
In 1955 a group of car owners took over the failing Columbus Speedway and named Jimmy Thomas Race Director. The appointment would serve as Jimmy’s first promotional duties. Early in the 1960’s Thomas went into business opening the Good and Bad Furniture Store in Columbus, but more importantly, next door Jimmy’s Speed Shop, originally founded in 1954, became a full-time operation offering services for racers of all types.
In 1965 Thomas turned his mechanical efforts toward NASCAR and the Big Leagues building and fielding a Grand National car for local hotshoe Sam McQuagg – who would become NASCAR’s Rookie of the Year in 1965 driving for Thomas. In 1966 the combination of Leroy Yarbrough driver – Jimmy Thomas car owner/mechanic produced a number of pole awards, track records and an upset win in the National 500 at the Charlotte, North Carolina Speedway. Thomas, like so very few before proved that a small independent team could knock off the big factory teams on the Grand National circuit.
Following his NASCAR exploits Jimmy returned home to his family and the world of dirt late model racing. His dream of building and promoting a race facility came to be when, in 1973, he built from the ground up the East Alabama Motor Speedway, one of the south’s most famous and longest running motor racing attractions. East Alabama quickly became a weekly gathering place for much of the Southeast’s top dirt late model talent with its well run programs and ripe purses. The track would also receive a NASCAR sanction in 1978, hold Robert Smawley’s inaugural NDRA event in 1978 and become home to one of dirt late models racing’s biggest annual events – the National 100 held there each season since 1975. Jimmy also became active in promoter’s workshops and in 1974 received the Southern Auto Racing News “Promoter of the Year Award”.
In 1974 oldest son Billy began racing late models, so father and son set out to develop a lighter weight more competitive chassis for Billy to tackle America’s dirt ovals. An extremely fast, jig framed car, with front strut suspension was produced by the family duo and thus the “Jig-A-Lo” Chassis was created.
In October of 1980, the racing world was saddened by the loss of Jimmy Thomas, who passed away following a battle with brain cancer. With a huge void to fill the family moved on, continuing Jimmy’s dream. Son Billy stepped up to take over the day to day operations of the speedway while Jimmy’s wife Shirley remained as book keeper and office manager. She also became mentor, teaching the kids the promoting aspects and business end of the sport. Younger sons Bobby and Ben both helped with track maintenance and preparation while daughter Beverly worked the concessions and eventually became involved with scoring, registration and all other facets of track operation.
Today, Mom Shirley has retired, but the kids continue on. Billy and Beverly handle speedway operations, co-promoting together along with Beverly’s husband Shane Thompson. A high quality lighting and sound system, an enlarged pit area to accommodate at least 400 race teams, and box seating and VIP suites have been added to the speedway in recent years. The track’s show place like atmosphere and the smoothness of its operation brought Billy the RPM Regional Race Promoter of the year award in 2009. Bobby builds race engines and spec carburetors for the track and Ben stays busy building his Scorpion Race Chassis, which he founded in 2000 and has become one of the area’s top chassis distributors.