Though its design does not have as many safety hazards as Talladega, NASCAR requires the use of restrictor plates to prevent excess speeds. Before the 1988 restriction, Bill Elliott averaged 210.364 speed during qualifying. Notable, the track is much narrower, making 4 or 5 cars wide a nerve-racking experience that no drivers wish to attempt on purpose. A lot fewer major accident occur at Dayton than Talladega. When constructed in 1957-9, the maximum degree of bank for a concrete turn was limited by the technology of the day to 31°. The banking was not primarily designed for high speeds but rather to allow fans in in even the farthest seats a 'birds-eye view' of the cars' positions with each other. A large hole in the infield of the track dug during construction remains naturally filled with water from the area's water table (aided by rain). This is known as Lake Lloyd and there are no walls or barriers to keep stray cars from entering (this has yet to happened). One driver, Tom Pistone, insisted on keeping an oxygen tank and wearing a life vest in his car because he could not swim and didn't want to drown in the lake. DIR's distinctive 3 straits shape was designed to make the longest track possible in the only affordable land available to the builder. The track also has an alternate road course
layout with a chicane 3/4 of the way down the main straight and a 'butterfly wing' detour into the infield composed of 5 turns and 2 hairpins in the first strait. A motorcycle course
with uniqe 'sanddunes' is also in the infield.