Miles the Monster – Dover, Delaware - Atlas Obscura
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Dover, Delaware

Miles the Monster

The Dover International Speedway is home to a towering, concrete-skinned, racecar-hungry behemoth. 

From Wayne’s World to The Simpsons to Ben Franklin throwing the shade of omission back in colonial days, Delaware has taken (probably more than) its share of guff. However, the nation’s second-smallest state — as well as the only state located entirely on the Delmarva peninsula — has much to recommend it, including a hulking Thing-like beast exploding through the ground outside the capital city’s storied speedway.

The Dover International Speedway, nicknamed “The Monster Mile,” was constructed in 1969 by the Melvin L. Joseph Construction Company, Inc., and has hosted NASCAR, USAC, and IndyCar races. From 2007 through 2009 the speedway received an upgrade — “The Monster Makeover” — that expanded the track’s facilities. In 2008, during the makeover, a 46-foot fiberglass creature was built outside the racetrack, and named Miles the Monster. 

Miles the Monster has been the mascot of Dover International Speedway since 2000. His likeness can be found on the winner’s trophy, tickets to the races, t-shirts, action figures, and other memorabilia. His monumental manifestation is located at the track’s Victory Plaza, behind the grandstand of the front stretch, bursting out of a circular base.  He appears angry, with red eyes, and clutching a racecar in his rocky right hand. His circular base contains plaques commemorating every Dover NASCAR winner since 1969 and has room for every winner until the year 2035.

In 2012, Miles the Monster launched a failed run for President of the United States with the campaign slogan “Concrete Change in 2012.” He ran without the backing of a political party. The track historian George Keller acted as Miles the Monster’s campaign manager.  

In 2016 Smithfield Foods entered a three-year agreement as sponsor of the Victory Plaza monster statue. The white and red racecar was removed from Miles the Monster’s hand and was replaced with a blue Number 43 Smithfield Foods stock car.  

Know Before You Go

The monster can be reached by car and is located at the Dover International Speedway on North Dupont Highway. Make a left at the main entrance, then go to the right, and drive around the stadium to the back side. The monster is under 24 hour surveillance, keeping him out of trouble.