How to Get a NASCAR Hard Card?

Getting a NASCAR Hard Card is like getting a special ticket. This card allows people to get close to the action in a NASCAR race. It’s not just about watching the cars zoom by, but also being a part of the behind-the-scenes happenings. This guide will show you the steps to apply for a NASCAR Hard Card, what requirements you need to meet, and how it opens the door to the thrilling world of motor racing.

How to Get a NASCAR Hard Card

Getting a NASCAR Hard Card can be exciting since it lets you into special areas during NASCAR races. First, you need to be working with a race team, a sponsor, or have a real work reason to be at the races. Then, you have to fill out an application from NASCAR’s office or NASCAR’s official website, giving them your personal and work details. They also want to make sure you know and follow their safety rules, which might include going to certain meetings or training. Once they check everything and say yes, you will get your Hard Card, which usually is good for the whole racing season.

Keeping your Hard Card for the next season means you have to follow all of NASCAR’s rules and behave properly during the events. The Hard Card is super helpful for people working in the racing world as it makes getting into races easier and quicker. But remember, getting one is mostly for people whose jobs are directly related to racing, so knowing people in the industry can help a lot. The steps to apply might sound easy, but it’s really designed for those who need to be at the races for work reasons.

black and white nascar

Importance of a Hard Card 

Now, what if you could be more than just a spectator? That’s where a NASCAR Hard Card comes into the picture. This special card is like a VIP pass, allowing you to enter areas others can only dream of. With it, you can go behind the scenes, meet the teams, and see the cars up close. It’s a unique experience that brings you to the heart of the action, letting you see the hard work and dedication that goes into every race.

Eligibility for a NASCAR Hard Card

Who Can Apply? 

Not just anyone can walk in and get a NASCAR Hard Card. It’s reserved for those who are part of the racing world. This includes team members, officials, and some members of the media. So, if you’re someone who works in or around NASCAR, this card could be your backstage pass to the thrilling world of motor racing.

Necessary Credentials 

Getting a Hard Card requires proving you have a good reason to have one. You’ll need to show your ID, proof that you’re a part of a racing team or a media outlet. They might also ask for other documents based on who you are or why you want the card. It’s all about ensuring that only the right people – those who need to be close to the action for their jobs – get this special access. So, before applying, make sure you have all your documents ready to show you’re a true part of the NASCAR community.

Applying for a NASCAR Hard Card

Process Overview 

Getting your hands on a NASCAR Hard Card isn’t as simple as buying a ticket to a race. It’s a detailed process that makes sure only the right folks get this special access. Here’s a glimpse into how it unfolds: First, you’ll need to fill out an application. Then, there’s a background check to ensure you have a clean record. Lastly, you’ll go through safety training to ensure you know the dos and don’ts while you’re on the track.

Filling out the Application 

First things first, grab an application form from NASCAR’s official website or office. Filling it out is your initial step into this exciting world. The application will ask for basic information like your name, address, and the reason why you want a Hard Card. Be honest and precise while filling out the details, as this is your first impression!

Required Documents 

Documentation is crucial! You’ll need to provide proof of identification (like your driver’s license or passport), and proof of affiliation with a NASCAR team or media outlet. Sometimes, they might ask for additional documents based on your individual circumstances. Make sure to have all papers ready to make the process smooth and swift.


Yes, the Hard Card comes with a price tag. The cost may vary, so it’s wise to check the latest fee structure on NASCAR’s official website. Remember, this fee is your ticket to an extraordinary behind-the-scenes experience, which is priceless for any NASCAR enthusiast!

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2009 Shelby 427 race March 1 at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Nevada, USA, March 1, 2009.
View public domain image source here

Passing The Required Checks

Background Checks 

NASCAR wants to keep the races safe and fun for everyone, and that’s why they perform a background check. They’ll look into your history to make sure there’s nothing alarming. It’s a standard procedure to ensure that those getting the close-up experience maintain the sport’s integrity and safety.

Safety Training

Safety is a big deal in the fast and furious world of NASCAR. Once your background check is clear, you’ll be required to undergo safety training. This training will teach you the safety protocols to follow while you’re near the track or in the pit area. It’s not just about keeping you safe, but also ensuring the safety of the drivers and team members. This step ensures that everyone continues to enjoy the races in a safe and secure environment.

Receiving Your Hard Card


After you’ve dotted the i’s and crossed the t’s in the application process, it’s time to patiently wait for your NASCAR Hard Card to arrive. The timeline can vary, but generally, it may take a few weeks from the time your application is accepted. This time is filled with anticipation as you wait for the card that opens doors to the thrilling world of NASCAR.

What to Do Upon Receiving Your Hard Card 

Hooray! Your hard card has arrived! Now, it’s essential to read any accompanying information to understand the do’s and don’ts associated with your new access privileges. Remember, with great power comes great responsibility. Keep your card safe, follow all the rules, and enjoy the exciting journey that awaits in the heart of NASCAR action.

Nascar Hard Card Guidelines

Getting a NASCAR Hard Card is like having a VIP pass that lets you get close to all the race car action. This card is especially cool as it allows you to enter all the garages where you can see race cars up close. If your card says “OFFICIALS” or NASCAR, you’re allowed to enter at any time. People with hard cards from a different series are also allowed in, but only if that series is running with NSCS. Workers from Racing Radios, Sunoco, or Goodyear get to enter the garage about 30 minutes before it officially opens. Race teams can also get in early, but they need to get approval from the series director or a person named Buster Auton.

Here are some guidelines in bullet points:

  • No alcoholic beverages are allowed in the garage.
  • If you have paper credentials, you’ll need a photo ID to prove they belong to you.
  • Kids are allowed in the garage, but they need a special NASCAR credential.
  • Some credentials for kids have a “HOT” sticker which makes them as good as their parent’s credential. Others are just good for race day.
  • No golf carts are allowed in the garage, but some special green ones from NASCAR, and Emergency Medical Services and Fire carts are okay.
  • Security is tight, especially when the first car is placed on pit road to keep fans away from the race cars.
  • During the pre-race, fans and tours are kept in the concrete area on the pit road.
  • Paper credentials are okay on pit road, but only if accompanied by someone with a NASCAR hard card.
  • After the National Anthem, the pit road must be cleared except for crew members and broadcast media.
  • During qualifying, live broadcasts can have three representatives outside the concrete area for interviews.
  • Media and photographers can stay in the concrete area of the pit stall behind the white line, while fans are kept on the other side of the pit wall.
  • During the race, only folks with “hot” credentials and hard cards are allowed to be on the pit lane.

NASCAR Chevelle front

Maintaining Your Hard Card

Renewal Process 

Just like many other official cards, your NASCAR Hard Card has an expiry date. The renewal process usually begins by filling out a renewal form, which may require updated information and possibly a renewal fee. It’s a good practice to start the renewal process well before the expiry to ensure uninterrupted access.

What to Do if Lost or Stolen 

Oh no, lose your hard card? Don’t fret. Report the loss to the NASCAR credentials office as soon as possible. They’ll guide you on the steps to get a replacement. This may involve filling out some forms and paying a replacement fee. It’s a hiccup, but you’ll be back on track soon!


The path to obtaining and maintaining a NASCAR Hard Card may seem lengthy, but it’s designed to ensure safety and exclusivity. By following the outlined process, you’re not just getting closer to the roaring engines; you’re becoming part of a prestigious community. So, gear up, follow the steps, and take your passion for NASCAR to the next level!

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