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In 1968 the race was extended to six hours, becoming the 6 Hours of Watkins Glen.
The circuit's current layout has more or less been the same since 1971, although a chicane was installed at the uphill Esses in 1975 to slow cars through these corners, where there was a fatality during practice at the 1973 United States Grand Prix.
When NASCAR returned to the track in 1986, they chose to use the short course layout.
IMSA originally used the "Boot", but eventually, that series also began using the shorter 1971 layout.
The short course was slightly lengthened in 1992 (see "Inner Loop" below).
The most significant change to the track had not been completed for the 1971 Six Hours, but was finished in time for the Formula One race that autumn.
To date, NASCAR events have never used the Boot layout.Initially, public roads in the village were used for the race course.In 1956 a permanent circuit for the race was built.The chicane was removed in 1985, but another chicane called the "Inner Loop" was installed in 1992 after a fatal accident during the previous year's NASCAR Winston Cup event.The circuit is known as the Mecca of North American road racing and is a very popular venue among fans and drivers.