It is safe to say that NASCAR Cup Series’ dirt racing at Bristol Motor Speedway has failed to live up to expectations.
NASCAR held dirt racing at Bristol for the third consecutive year, but calls are growing to get it scrapped. One of the prominent voices calling NASCAR to hold two Cup races on a concrete surface at Bristol is 2021 champion Kyle Larson.
While he is famous for his dirt racing exploits outside NASCAR, he is of the opinion that Bristol doesn’t suit that type of racing.
“Dirt takes our sport backward” – Kyle Larson wants NASCAR to revert Bristol to its regular asphalt surface
Even after winning two races on Bristol’s dirt track, one in the Cup Series and one in the Truck Series, Joey Logano would rather prefer racing here on the concrete surface too.
Given all the negativity the track is gathering, Elton Sawyer, NASCAR’s VP of Competition, said that the future of the track is not yet decided.
“All of those things we put on the table,” Sawyer said. “You look at the logistics, you look at the time of year, you look at the facility. Obviously, you look at the results at the end of the day, and if our fans are enjoying that type of racing.
“Do we get a good crowd that shows up? Do we get a good TV audience? All of those things go into the decision-making of whether we go back or if we move forward with another venue or if we do something different there.”
The problem with dirt racing at Bristol is that it is one of the fan-favourite tracks but on a concrete surface. And many opine that NASCAR should not have changed it but rather organized dirt racing on dirt tracks such as Eldora Speedway.
But as Sawyer said, NASCAR will be looking not just drivers’ opinions but TV ratings as well as fan approval to determine the future of the track.