Cliff, as much as I liked Charlie Allen's FCs and the idea of NHRA finally getting a substantial strip in AZ I couldn't understand the decision to use the Firebird Raceway name when there was already another long established Firebird in Boise, ID. From that point forward we'd have to clarify and say "the Idaho one" or " the one in Arizona!"
I don't like the name Wild Horse much. Well, it is on the Rez, so.... What if Charlie Allen had named it Maricopa County Int'l Raceway? MCIR.... heh
OK, I looked up "maricopa" and it sez that was the name of a Native American tribe out of the Gila Valley (south of Phx). More trivia: if ya go downtown by Sky Harbor Airport, there is a museum. The people who lived in & around the Phx area were called Hohokum by the Native Americans who lived in Phx in the 1800's. The name means "all used up", cuz they just left the area for whatever reason about 400 years ago, after being here for 1000 years. Drought? They had a trade route that went up into Utah, New Mexico, Mexico, parts of Calif, etc. Also dug the canals that are still in use in Phoenix.
If I'm not mistaken the reason Firebird was chosen was because the lake was already named Firebird. Personally I dont mind the name Wild Horse but when i usually refer to Wild Horse people think I'm referring to the casino so it's easier to just refer to it as Firebird. Plus for some reason I've always liked the International part in any race track name, makes it sound more official, kind of like PIR even though it's now referred to as just Phoenix Raceway
Zed, what you said about the word "international" is true but I had the opposite sentiment. First, I felt the word (5 syllables) is much too long for a venue's name. And second, since multi-national racing wasn't occurring on drag strips it was a bit of a misnomer. Cliff, I do think the "Maricopa County" would've been a good name. It's easy to say and is very distinctive.