It’s official… NASCAR has released the schedules for the 2011 season, and seasons of speculation are finally over – both Kentucky and Kansas got their long-anticipated Cup dates.
I’ve never been the biggest advocated for giving Kentucky a Cup date and Kansas a second Cup date. They’re really just more of the same. That said, I’m glad NASCAR, ISC and SMI are bringing racing to fans who appreciate it.
Though I haven’t been the biggest proponent of adding dates to those two tracks, I (and TC) have been a proponent of taking a date away from California. The racing is never very good and for whatever reason the crowds just couldn’t be maintained. Some markets just cant support two dates.
I believe that’s the story in Atlanta. Though I like the track and the racing it produces, it too was having issues with attendance. From a business prospective it made more sense giving its second date to Kentucky – a place I think will be able to support the event.
Other welcome news was that SMI didn’t pull a date from New Hampshire – I thought for sure Bruton would use the police issue in Loudon to give Las Vegas a second date. The man in the gawdy sunglasses surprises.
Overall, while the 2011 schedule does bring us changes, there aren’t really a ton of surprises. As always, the internal politics of NASCAR, ISC and SMI keep the possibility of changes to a minimum. I’d certainly like to see a Chase that was more representative of the whole schedule, but I’m good with what is hopefully just the beginning of a truly improved schedule in NASCAR.
Some Thoughts on the Truck Series Schedule
With 24 scheduled events for the 2011 season, and another one TBA, the Truck Series schedule is much improved over this year’s. Gone is the three week break between Daytona and Atlanta, and the two week break between Atlanta and Martinsville. Those successive breaks were a little excessive – not to mention they killed the momentum of the season.
There are a couple of two week breaks early on in 2011, and a month long break in the middle of the summer, but all in all they’ve done a much better job keeping the series flowing.
As far as filling that TBA date, why not have a triple-header at Richmond in September? There might be some logistical issues with the haulers, but who wouldn’t love to see the trucks make their RIR return?
I’m not sure what NASCAR is working on for that date, but my plea is that they keep them at a short track.
And finally a couple of disappointing spots. Pocono is back on the schedule. I think we all know my thoughts on that. And I don’t really understand the reasoning for moving the Phoenix date. It’s going to be weird for them to have an off-weekend before the season-finale at Homestead – and we’ve had such great end of season showdowns there.
What are your thoughts on Kentucky and Kansas and all three schedules for the 2011 season?