NASCAR to resume racing on May 17th with four races in 11 days

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In the round-up: America’s most popular motor sport series NASCAR has confirmed it will resume racing behind closed doors on May 17th at Darlington, then hold three more Cup races by the 27th.

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Obster remembers when F1 visited Long Beach:

I was there in 1981 – my first GP race attending-and the crowds on race day were enormous-just unbelievable. It was a real scene.

โ€œThe Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beachโ€. Canon cameras had towers above the track with lenses you could hook up to. Wonderful event. Sorry to see F1 go from there.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 20 comments on “NASCAR to resume racing on May 17th with four races in 11 days”

    1. Congratulations to NASCAR management, SEVEN races to be held behind closed doors under full Covid-19 prevention measures. Motorsport starved US TV audiences may rekindle their love affair with NASCAR (although the cars are so far from Stock Cars).
      I thought Nascars main income was “bums on seats” so how financially rewarding these races will be I don’t know, but any income has to be better than no income and the format of racing close to the factory, 1 day- 1 race, should be cost effective. F1 should take note.

      1. Nascar has been running races to essentially empty stands for the last 5 years. I really don’t think it matters at this point.

        1. Lol but it’s true

      2. @HoHum I read in last week that NASCAR is able to take this position most of the funding for ‘the product’ comes from lucrative TV deals, not from bums on seats. In the same article it said the opposite is true for Indycar (with the exception of Indy 500).

      3. @hohum it seems rather unlikely that NASCAR will be able to kindle the enthusiasm of the average viewer in the US – most of the changes that have been implemented in recent years have instead progressively alienated them.

        In fact, most of the changes would be things that you have ranted about in the past – removing historic races from the calendar in an effort to chase sponsorship cash, manipulation of the rules to promote “the show” over traditional racing values, the perception that the races are artificially manipulated in favour of popular drivers, or rules even changed arbitrarily to reward and promote fan favourites.

        All of those problems remain and are still a strong turn off for most potential viewers – people aren’t going to forget what has been going on for the past two decades in a matter of a couple of days. Like darryn, most are either mocking NASCAR on the grounds that racing in front of empty stands is pretty normal for them these days anyway – a quip not far from the truth, since NASCAR now hides attendance figures because they’re so bad – or complaining that the move is motivated by the greed of the France family: cynicism and mild disgust seems to be more prevalent than any sort of thankfulness.

        1. While you are spot-on, I really think this could be setting NASCAR on the right trajectory. From what I’m seeing, the races will primarily be held at tracks within driving distance of Charlotte, which means an emphasis on NASCAR’s traditional Southeastern tracks. They’re also going to be first back on air in front of a sports-starved US market, and when combined with the split from NASCAR’s own worst enemy Brian France, it’s a very real possibility that this could reinvigorate an interest in NASCAR.

          With that being said, it’s also a very real possibility that they blow it.

        2. @unicron2002, ANON, @j-rva, As is common with lots of my comments I may be a couple of decades out of date. Yes I do decry the artificiality of Nascar which is why I have not paid any attention to it since the “excitement of 40 V8’s thundering past only yards away” was compared favourably with “20 V6’s droning past a hundred metres away”, I did hear that the France family ( the US Ecclestone) had gone, but regardless of it’s popularity or lack thereof, I applaud it’s efforts to find a workable solution to the current problem.

          1. @hohum Brian France is gone, but the France family is still there and in charge. Bill France Sr’s son Jim France is now in charge. While it will be extremely difficult to reverse the damage Brian brought to the sport, Jim’s presence is has been more positively received within the NASCAR industry.

            Right now, NASCAR has a lot of negativity that its trying to shed and certainly comments like ANON’s don’t help, but I do believe the direction that the current leadership is trying is good but it’s going to take time.

            I will add that the NASCAR industry seems to be much more cohesive in the decision making process, unlike the political back and forth we see from F1.

            1. @dragon86, Thanks for the info Corey.

    2. Wouldn’t it be great if covid-19 gave us Formula E on a range of British circuits. The Mexico ePrix was my favourite so far, I think because it’s part of a proper circuit rather than a slightly contrived city location.

      1. Yes. FE on their terrible street circuits does nothing for me. I would like to see them on proper circuits more often

    3. Formula E could race at Brands Hatch, Silverstone or Donington Park

      ????? Where’s the link?

    4. Surely itโ€™s about time some common sense prevailed, and teams/FOM and the FIA stop this silly haggling over the cost cap.

      Last year a cap of $175 million was agreed. At no time was I said that any team โ€œhadโ€ to spend that level and it was generally agreed that the top teams were the only ones that would be anywhere near that cap and would be for quite some time to come.

      Now, the teams that had no chance of getting anywhere near that cap are looking to have it lowered. Even if itโ€™s lowered to 100 million, a couple (or more) teams would still be hard pressed to get there.

      So why all this haggling and potential fallout regarding the cap? Itโ€™s a given, and has been for years, that the top teams will still retain an advantage budget wise for several years until the other teams budgets start to converge, lowering the cap will still have a convergence factor, albeit shorter, but it was agreed previously that the convergence path was tolerable.

      All I see happening is some teams trying to take advantage of a bad situation to force the larger teams out of the competition or at least cause them major disruption. Theyโ€™re not trying to aid survival – if they donโ€™t have the budget to continue next year, then lowering the cap wonโ€™t change that – their budget will still be the same, as will their results.

      If indeed there was interest in ensuring that there will be teams capable of competing next year, the discussions should be about setting up a temporary facility to provide all teams equal share from revenue or a guaranteed loan facility that teams could draw upon to stay solvent not discussions to change the budget cap that was agreed to and signed off.

      1. It’s all just that frog and scorpion fable. Nothing is going to change even in a pandemic like the one we are in.

      2. ColdFly (@)
        1st May 2020, 7:06

        provide all teams equal share from revenue

        Indeed there will be no need for a budget cap if that were to be achieved.
        But a fairer (let alone equal) revenue distribution is even more difficult to achieve than a budget cap.
        Maybe combine the two: If teams spend more than a certain budget then they will need to fund the revenue of the combined other teams with a similar amount.

    5. I see VB has joined iRacing.

      After this decision to extent mass gathering-ban in Hungary until the middle of August, I wouldn’t be surprised if there were to be no Hungarian GP at all this year.

      Last year was the 25th anniversary so four more years until the next circular (30) anniversary for the infamous Imola-tragedies.

    6. ColdFly (@)
      1st May 2020, 7:13

      I watched 5 minutes of Norrisโ€™ Indy practice. Single gear, almost constantly full throttle, 2 big shunts, boring.
      If iRacing is the best sim racing, what a waste of ones and zeroes.

    7. Howdy, guess I’m watching some NASCAR. No crowds? Safer! Danger is on track #makingNASCARsafer.

    8. @keithcollantine Thanks for the reminder of Ayrton Senna’s untimely passing. I remember watching the race (on TV) as if it was yesterday. Best mate and I being in bits after seeing the crash, and the aftermath – not knowing – we feared the worst and it was confirmed.

      I was a fan back then and had a “Nacional” baseball cap.

      Still have it.

      RIP fast man.

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