LONDON: The Racing Journal
A few years ago, we made a suggestion that NASCAR run some satellite races as part of the Sprint Cup circuit. Over the years a few of my ideas have been implemented. We didn’t expect this one to draw attention, but now it has popped up again in some circles.
Even though the season has 36 races, there is room for more. What we would like to see is a couple of mid-week races to be run in late June, July or August.
These would be one day events. For many years, NASCAR ran most of their races this way. These races would be run on tracks around a half-mile in size. Many weekly tracks are suffering. This one big event would be a major shot in the arm.
The races would be approximately 200 laps. A hard compound tire would be used. Many of these tracks do not have facilities for fast pit stops. They could take a break at halfway, then send the field out in the order they were running. The should count green flag only laps.
Since speed isn’t a factor, to save money car owners could leave their regular pit crews at home. They would save money on tires also.
The races would pay regular points. The prize money could be supplied from many sources, like the point fund or supplemented by the larger tracks. The operators of the host tracks would only pay a sanction fee. There should be a limit on what they can charge for admission so weekly fans can afford to go.
Imagine a Sprint Cup race at Eldora or any dirt track like Knoxville. It could mean the revitalization of places like North Wilkesboro. No lights? They can lease them from Musco.
Every year they can pick new venues. I imagine NASCAR-sanctioned tracks would get priority. The fans would get great racing, determined by the driver’s will, not aerodynamics.
A Sprint Cup event at a new location would be great for the economy of the area which it is held. It would bring fans who may not come to the track for weekly racing and discover how exciting it is.
It would make Sprint Cup racing more interesting instead of the same schedule year after year.
I’m sure the folks at NASCAR aren’t spending sleepless nights waiting for my ideas but I think this has merit.