With intense racing action and its mission to exceed expectations, Bristol Motor Speedway is the place to be for NASCAR fans in 2018.

The best stock car drivers in the world return to Bristol twice in 2018 with the Food City 500 weekend, April 13-15, and the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race week, Aug. 15-18. Both race weekends will feature multiple support series and give fans the opportunity to see some of the most intense action in racing. In addition, the UNOH 200 in August will serve as the regular season finale for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, which will add even more fireworks to an already exhilarating week.

"We're thrilled to continue our tradition of having NASCAR's best twice a year in East Tennessee," said Jerry Caldwell, executive vice president and general manager at Bristol Motor Speedway. "We've seen tremendous excitement at our NASCAR events with the refurbishing of the lower groove and can't wait to see what action awaits us in 2018. It's going to be another exciting year for NASCAR at Bristol and we're looking forward to welcoming the fans."

The Food City 500 weekend will feature competition in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR K&N Series. The weekend kicks off with qualifying day on Friday, April 13, featuring practice in MENCS and NXS and finishing up with MENCS qualifying. The Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 NXS event and Zombie Auto 125 NKS doubleheader highlights Saturday action. The weekend will culminate with the Food City 500 on Sunday, April 15, where NASCAR's best will battle on the high banks of The World's Fastest Half-Mile.

August's race week is so electrifying and so patriotic, that it has become known as the week of America's Night Race. NASCAR's gladiators will battle under the lights to prove themselves as the ultimate warrior at Bristol. Action kicks off with the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series' UNOH 200 and NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour doubleheader on Wednesday, Aug. 15. With the UNOH 200 being NCWTS competitors' last chance to gain entry to the playoffs, drivers will be pulling out all the stops under the lights for the chance to run for the series championship.

Following Wednesday's night of action will be the Food City 300 NXS race on Friday night, Aug. 17. The Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race finishes up BMS' 2018 NASCAR schedule on Saturday, Aug. 18.

Last August, BMS officials announced that the bottom groove of the iconic half-mile oval would be treated with a traction compound with the hope of improving the bottom groove to create action all over the track. Last season's Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race week was a success, leading officials to decide to repeat the process for last month's Food City 500 weekend.

The Food City 500 weekend saw great racing in all three series that visited the track, including the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR K&N Series East. Fans were treated to a racetrack that provided two exciting but different types of racing styles. For a majority of the time, the bottom groove proved to be the fastest way around the circuit, harkening back memories of the famed Bristol Bump'N'Run. The move was resurrected by Erik Jones, who moved Ryan Blaney out of the way to take the win at the Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 NXS race.

While the bottom groove remained the preferred lane for most of the Food City 500, the eventual addition of the top lane forced competitors to take risks and in turn, added to the action. Exciting side-by-side action between the likes of Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Larson and Martin Truex Jr. was interspersed with bump and grinding action along the bottom as drivers sought to move competitors out of the way.

Don't forget, tickets to Aug. 19's 2017 Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race are still available. Fans won't want to miss Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s last battle at The Last Great Colosseum, where he will be searching for a win that would live in lore around the hallowed grounds of Bristol. Single-day tickets start at just $69, with weekend packages as low as $99. Visit BristolTix.com or call 423-BRISTOL to purchase tickets today.