Ohio-based Speedway, the nation's fourth-largest operator of company-owned convenience and gasoline stores with nearly 1,500 sites, is driving south into the Chattanooga area as it competes head to head against other industry giants.

Speedway, a division of Marathon Petroleum Corp., last month opened a new store on Bonny Oaks Drive between Interstate 75 and the Volkswagen plant. The company is looking to open at least three other locations in the Chattanooga area.

Jamal Kheiry, Marathon's communications manager, declined to get specific about other sites, but said Speedway is expanding into areas contiguous to its existing operating locations. Speedway already has a handful of stores in the Nashville region.

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