Founded in 1948 by Bill France Sr., the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) is a sanctioning body that oversees multiple racing leagues throughout North America. The NASCAR Sprint Cup and NASCAR Nationwide Series race full-bodied cars that vaguely resemble four-door production vehicles. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races vehicles that resemble pickup trucks. NASCAR sanctions more than 1,200 races in more than 30 U.S. states, Canada, Mexico and Europe.
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series is the sport's highest level of professional competition. It is consequently the most popular and most profitable NASCAR series. Since 2001, the Sprint Cup season has consisted of 36 races over 10 months. A modern Sprint Cup racecar is built from the ground up and based on four-door American-made cars. NASCAR Sprint Cup cars have fenders, which are important because they allow side-to-side contact between cars without allowing the wheels to hook causing a wreck. Sprint Cup cars weigh in at 3,400 pounds and have wheelbases of exactly 110 inches. Their engines are 358 cubic inch V8s that can generate over 750 horsepower. The biggest Sprint Cup race of the year is the Daytona 500, which is the very first race of the year.
The NASCAR Xfinity Series is the second-highest level of professional competition in NASCAR. The season is usually a few races shorter than that of the Sprint Cup, and the prize money is significantly lower. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series features modified pickup trucks.