The Royal Zartanian 500 is one of 68 events that make up the RZOEAZ Crown Cup Series stock car racing season, and is generally considered to be the most prestigious race on the circuit. The race is held at Imperial City International Speedway on the outskirts of Imperial City, the capital of the Greater Zartanian Empire. It has been held annually as a professional race under the auspices of the RZOEAZ since the inaugural 299AP race. The race is featured each season as the first event. The inaugural RZOEAZ race was won by Eastern Zartanian driver Merton Gray, and the reigning race winner is Solanch driver Anson Iki. The race has been won from the pole position once, by Kevin Waln in 300AP. Below is a brief history of the race, followed by a list of previous RZOEAZ events run, the pole sitter, and the race winner.
The race known today as the Royal Zartanian 500 got its start in 264AP when a group of automobile enthusiasts gathered at the old Imperial City dirigible field one February evening. The group had been meeting regularly for some time, showing off their cars and the modifications they had made, attempting to impress the local beauties from the local Eastern Zartanian College for Women. On this particular instance, the normally jovial get-together gave way to a heated argument between two of the enthusiasts - young university students named Wolfgang Mokq, from Guldavya, and Jimmy Rusch, from Brytanea. Unfortunately, the true cause of the argument between the two men has been lost to history; some claim it was about whose car was the loudest, other claim that it had to do with a young lady that both men were pursuing. Whatever the reason, the men decided to resolve the argument with a race between their modified stock cars. Mokq was driving a black 264AP Kalorzh Model 3, while Rusch sat behind the wheel of a dark red 263AP Veron Caliber-4. Backed by their enthusiastic and vociferous supporters, the two men agreed to a 10-lap race, each lap encompassing a complete circuit around the three-quarter-mile perimeter of the abandoned dirigible base. At literally the drop of a hat, the two muscle cars were roaring and squealing around the dirt path that marked the base perimeter. When the dust settled ten laps later, Wolfgang Mokq and his Kalorzh convertible had easily bested Rusch and his Veron. The following February, 265AP, when the group met again at the dirigible base, Rusch challenged Mokq to a rematch of the previous year's race. Still fuming from the humiliating defeat, Rusch had spent most of 264AP improving his Veron Caliber-4 even more. The two men lined up to race again, but this time each brought a teammate to help ensure a fair race by the other side - Will Henders drove his white 264AP Straymahq Palefire alongside Mokq, while Robert Ycks placed his 265AP Zealous Mk II in line with Rusch. The 10-lap race was quickly over again, again with Mokq winning, but by a closer margin. By the third running in 266AP, Mokq and Rusch had resolved their differences, and the race was run simply as a fun, youthful diversion. With each successive year, the field of participants grew, and the pioneering names of the sport gradually took their places in the pantheon of winners: Rickhardt Petty, James Donovan, Roldan Stayton, Richard Young, and others. The Imperial City Dirigible Field was finally demolished in 278AP, and the races moved to a dirt track in the Petty family's farm field on the outskirts of the capital. By 294AP, the sport of stock car racing had finally established itself as a legitimate sport, and the current Imperial City International Speedway was built to be, at that time, the largest and fastest oval speedway in Vexillium. The RZOEAZ began administering the Imperial City race, now dubbed the Royal Zartanian 500, in 299AP as a professional sporting event.