“Where Was NASCAR?”- Veteran Insider Baffled by Lacking Storylines as F1’s Vegas Stint Steals Silly-Season Spotlight

Published 01/31/2024, 6:17 AM EST

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USA Today via Reuters

Taking the popular saying, “Timing beats speed”, to heart, the world’s biggest motorsports extravaganza, Formula One seems to have perfectly timed NASCAR’s off-season to feature their first-ever night race in the Vegas strip. The hype built by the Stock Car Racing giant through the course of one whole season was seemingly dismantled in a few weeks as the open-wheel bonanza took over Sin City with racing fans flocking down to catch the action.

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Despite the rampant fan criticisms the event got, F1’s night race was a grand success, much like NASCAR’s Chicago street race. However, the off-season meant a slight dip in the graph, taking away the momentum from NASCAR’s 2024 hype train.

Speaking on his popular, Action Detrimental podcast, the JGR veteran Denny Hamlin divulged the lack of storylines leading up to the 2024 season, along with prominent racing journalists

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Jordan

The NASCAR action pretty much was non-existent in the past few months after the epic conclusion to the 2023 season with Ryan Blaney bringing the cup back to the Team Penkse camp in Phoenix Raceway. Besides the fun and drama at dirt courses featured by Chili Bowl and other Late-Model series, fans were left with a lot of free time owing to NASCAR’s lackluster off-season.

While the silly season updates gave them some respite, it was nothing compared to the thrill and excitement a race brings to the community. Talking about the same in the latest AD podcast, popular journalist, Jeff Gluck gave a brief calling it the “quietest off-season.” He said, “I just feel like…I kept waiting for storylines or things to pop up or buzz or something and it just, I was so surprised how it just sort of fell off like, where was NASCAR? I don’t know if it was the F1 Vegas thing came so quick after NASCAR and then people were like talking about F1 Vegas and then people forgot to bring NASCAR up again or something.” 

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Continuing on his take further, he offered more parallels about why the season was dull and how the community could anticipate the high-stakes silly season moves. I feel like, and maybe it’s the silly season was just so much settled this year that none of it bled over to the off-season. There wasn’t a lot of questions that ‘Oh, we’re waiting on this.’ You kind of were like waiting on Noah Greg, somebody knew that was going to happen.  I don’t know, it was just like a really weird.” 

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The other participant in the discussion, Jordan Bianchi, too revealed his opinion and the matter and also provided insight on what could be a major talking point in the future. 

Jordan Bianchi reveals the “next big thing” in NASCAR

Joining Hamlin, his co-host, Jared Allen and Gluck was The Athletic’s reporter and prominent NASCAR enthusiast, Jordan Bianchi. After Hamlin asked the guests for their takes on NASCAR’s silly season and how the 2024 season is coming up following the 2023 finale, Bianchi gave his take partly agreeing with the Gluck. But he also revealed the biggest newsmaker and the “next big thing” in NASCAR.

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I agree with that to some extent, though most of the big silly season moves are always decided well before the season ends. Like, we already know by Phoenix who’s the big names or who are going to be where I have a really good idea,” said the reporter. He then briefed about the 7.7 billion media rights deal before citing the charter system as the biggest thing the organization has itself. 

We had the TV deal, which was announced, which was a big thing. But let’s be honest, the charter thing is the next big thing in this sport and that’s the thing that feels like it’s bubbling a little bit. There’s nothing to talk about right now, at least publicly. No one wants to talk about it publicly. But I’ll tell you what, in the next month or maybe,” said Bianchi before he concluded his take. 

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Do you think F1 capitalized on a good opportunity? Let us know in the c0mments below!

 

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Written by:

Kishore R

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Kishore is a NASCAR Writer at EssentiallySports. He actively covers live events and does detailed race analyses, helping fans understand the very nitty gritties of the sport. Using the right mix of storytelling and game expertise, Kishore can take his readers on a journey to see how a particular race was for some of their most loved drivers, like Kyle Busch and Chase Elliott.
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Edited by:

Ariva Debnath

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