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Comments

pmac

Great article. You hit the nail on the head. Looking for more money, abandoning your roots, and it is coming around to bite NASCAR in the butt. Im only 28 and have been camping on the infield at Charlotte for 20 years. I can tell you that is was a lot more fun when I was 8 than it is now that I'm 28.

J

While I'm not a fan of unions at all, one good purpose they serve in other sports is to check the head man, who can't easily make unilateral decisions. That's not the case in NASCAR, where the France family calls all the shots and no one can check them. As a result, the good of the sport has taken a back seat in their decision making, in favor of decisions and rhetoric that only emphasize that "WE ARE THE BOSSES, DO AS WE SAY!" With their egos making the calls, they can't bring themselves to admit that the points system is still a mess, that restrictor plates are causing the disasters at Talledega and that the new car is not producing better racing. I haven't watched a race flag-to-flag in about 2 years. The races are just unwatchable.

New Age

These figures are misleading but NASCAR is bigger than ever and growing. The current Great Depression may have some bearing but overall TV contracts are bigger as is revenue overall. NASCAR expanded like any other sport and is fully mainstream.
The next stage is the number of tracks will be doubled and split into divisions and end with a World Series or Super Bowl of racing.
Even though NASCAR began in the southeast mainly NC and Fl, its great too have California in the drivers seat. The Earnhardt and Petty names are over pandered too and their offspring suck.
In the future there will be more twice as many tracks owners and drivers.

Current Tracks Track Located Opened Series
Atlanta Motor Speedway Hampton Georgia 1960 Cup/NTW/CTS
Auto Club Speedway
(formally Calfornia) Fontana, California 1997 Cup/NTW/CTS
Bristol Motor Speedway Bristol, Tennessee 1961 Cup/NTW/CTS
Chicagoland Speedway Joliet, Illinois 2001 Cup/NTW
Darlington Raceway Darlington, South Carolina 1950 Cup/NTW
Daytona International Speedway Daytona Beach, Florida 1959 Cup/NTW/CTS
Dover International Speedway Dover, Delaware 1969 Cup/NTW/CTS
Homestead-Miami Speedway Homestead, Florida 1999 Cup/NTW/CTS
Indianapolis Motor Speedway Speedway, Indiana 1994 Cup
Infineon Raceway Sonoma, California 1989 Cup
Kansas Speedway Kansas City, Kansas 2001 Cup/NTW/CTS
Las Vegas Motor Speedway Las Vegas, Nevada 1998 Cup/NTW/CTS


Atlanta Motor Speedway - Hampton, Georgia (N, B, C)
Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez - Mexico City, Mexico (RC) (B)
Bristol Motor Speedway - Bristol, Tennessee (N, B, C)
California Speedway - Fontana, California (N, B, C)
Chicagoland Speedway - Joliet, Illinois (N, B)
Darlington Raceway - Darlington, South Carolina (N, B)
Daytona International Speedway - Daytona Beach, Florida (N, B, C)
Dover International Speedway - Dover, Delaware (N, B, C)
Gateway International Raceway - Madison, Illinois (B, C)
Homestead-Miami Speedway - Homestead, Florida (N, B, C)
Indianapolis Motor Speedway - Speedway, Indiana (N)
Indianapolis Raceway Park - Indianapolis, Indiana (B, C)
Infineon Raceway - Sonoma, California (RC) (N)
Kansas Speedway - Kansas City, Kansas (N, B, C)
Kentucky Speedway - Sparta, Kentucky (B, C)
Las Vegas Motor Speedway - Las Vegas, Nevada (N, B, C)
Lowe's Motor Speedway - Concord, North Carolina (N, B, C)
Mansfield Motorsports Speedway - Mansfield, Ohio (C)
Martinsville Speedway - Martinsville, Virginia (N, B, C)
Memphis Motorsports Park - Millington, Tennessee (B, C)
Michigan International Speedway - Brooklyn, Michigan (N, B, C)
Milwaukee Mile - West Allis, Wisconsin (B, C)
Nashville Superspeedway - Lebanon, Tennessee (B, C)
New Hampshire International Speedway - Loudon, New Hampshire N, B, C)
Phoenix International Raceway - Avondale, Arizona (N, B, C)
Pocono Raceway - Long Pond, Pennsylvania (N)
Richmond International Raceway - Richmond, Virginia (N, B)
Talladega Superspeedway - Talladega, Alabama (N, B, C)
Texas Motor Speedway - Justin, Texas (N, B, C)
Watkins Glen International - Watkins Glen, New York (RC) (N, B)

Defunct or inactive tracks (last race)Bowman Gray Stadium - Winston-Salem, North Carolina (1971 last Grand National race, still operating as part of the Dodge Weekly Series)
Charlotte Speedway - Charlotte, North Carolina the site of NASCAR's first series race in 1949, closed in 1956.
Daytona Beach Road Course - Daytona, Florida the site of NASCAR's first sanctioned race in 1948, closed in 1958.
Hickory Motor Speedway - Hickory, North Carolina (1998 last race but still operating)
Langley Speedway (British Columbia) - Langley, British Columbia (district municipality) (1978 last NASCAR Winston West race)
Langley Speedway (Virginia) - Langley, Virginia, the last race at the track was the last Grand National race before the series was renamed Winston Cup (November 1970), Busch Series (1982 to 1988).
Myrtle Beach Speedway - Myrtle Beach, South Carolina (1998 last race but still operating)
Nashville Speedway USA - Nashville, Tennessee (2002 but still operating under new management as Music City Motorplex)
Nazareth Speedway - Nazareth, Pennsylvania (2004)
North Carolina Speedway - Rockingham, North Carolina (2004)
North Wilkesboro Speedway - North Wilkesboro, North Carolina (1996)
Occoneechee Speedway - Hillsborough, North Carolina (1968).
Pikes Peak International Raceway - Fountain, Colorado (2005)
Riverside International Raceway - Riverside, California (RC) (1988)
Road America - Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin (GN) (1955, still operating for many other racing series including Champ Car, AMA Superbike, and sports car series)
South Boston Speedway - South Boston, Virginia (1972 last Cup race but still operating with Dodge Weekly Series and USAR Hooters Pro Cup, last Truck race in 2004)
Twin Ring Motegi 1996 - 1998 (NASCAR All-Star exhibition race)

John Price

Great op-ed and solid point about the non-southern venues...personally, I miss North Wilksboro & Rockingham and they shouldn't have messed around w/ Darlington's schedule. I don't think the racing has been that bad given the lousy performance of the new car...and why did they "fix" Bristol? Racing is as racing does....NASCAR is a better show than F-1 or Indy Car by far. I do love night racing. Prime Time Saturday Nights!! Sunday rain dates. TV coverage has gotten more and more "cheesy"...especially that stupid deal w/ Darryl Waltrip and "Digger". What audience are they trying to attract w/ that crap? How many people are tuning out because the pre-race show is longer than the race? MRN's radio broadcast is actually better but you can't simulcast it because of the delay. Stay after 'em Tom and thanks for the hard work.

jim

CAN'T WAIT UNTIL NASCAR FINDS A SPONSOR FOR THE PHONY YELLOW FLAGS...AND THEN ALL YELLOW FLAGS.

AND TAKE THE WALTRIPS BACK TO KY...

THANKS


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