The first Strictly Stock late-model race was held in 1949, and thus NASCAR was born. Since then, more than 2,500 races have been run.

During the last 60-plus years of racing, which has featured 31 different NASCAR Cup Series champions, there have been just eight races run on March 17 - St. Patrick's Day.

Here's a list of the eight Cup races run on the Irish holiday:

  1. March 17, 1957 - Ralph Moody wins at Wilson Speedway (Wilson, N.C.)
  2. March 17, 1962 - Jack Smith wins at Savannah Speedway (Savannah, Ga.)
  3. March 17, 1963 - Fred Lorenzen wins at Atlanta Motor Speedway
  4. March 17, 1968 - David Pearson wins at Bristol Motor Speedway
  5. March 17, 1974 - Cale Yarborough wins at Bristol Motor Speedway
  6. March 17, 1985 - Bill Elliott wins at Atlanta Motor Speedway
  7. March 17, 2002 - Sterling Marlin wins at Darlington Speedway
  8. March 17, 2013 - Kasey Kahne wins at Bristol Motor Speedway

While it has been an uncharacteristically mild winter for New England in 2016, New Hampshire Motor Speedway doesn't typically lend itself to being a hot spot for NASCAR racing during the month of March.

That said, New Hampshire Motor Speedway is excited to offer its fans a St. Patrick's Day package for the July 17 New Hampshire 301 or Sept. 25 New England 300 Sprint Cup Series race. For $150 fans will get one (1) grandstand ticket ($75), one (1) pre-race pit pass ($75) and one (1) gas can water bottle.

New Hampshire Motor Speedway officials, Milo the Moose, the speedway's show car, pace car and pace truck will be a part in the St. Patrick's Day Parade in South Boston. The parade begins at Broadway Station at 1 p.m. on Sunday, March 20.

Speedway officials will be handing out 10,000 guaranteed winner "Luck of the Irish" scratch tickets along the route. The scratch tickets are a part of the speedway's new rewards program. Participants will need to match two out of three prizes, ranging from 1,000-10,000 points as well as pairs of tickets to the New Hampshire 301 and New England 300 Sprint cup races.

All prizes may be redeemed by downloading the NHMS app and using the points to shop in the Fan Zone rewards store. Prizes will be collected on race weekends at the track.