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Racing Community Livid as NASCAR Bids Farewell to Daytona Amid Massive Calendar Overhaul

Published 10/02/2023, 5:09 PM EDT

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USA Today via Reuters

As the 2023 postseason is hurtling towards an exciting finale, the NASCAR community is already abuzz with the upcoming season updates. NASCAR has been unveiling its plans slowly but surely, the biggest is the decision to ditch the Bristol dirt race after a 3-year run. Then came the exciting news that the iconic oval in Indianapolis would return for its 30-year anniversary, restoring the Brickyard 400 to its former glory.

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Yet, the latest bombshell news has upended a tradition, causing upheaval among fans. Major changes to the 2024 schedule are disrupting the familiar NASCAR rhythm, leading to discontent. Legendary tracks are being sacrificed, and fans are vocalizing their displeasure.

NASCAR to ditch iconic tracks with a bold move in 2024


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The Cup Series is set to head to Iowa in 2024, potentially replacing the legendary Fontana track, a 2-mile speedway that has been a staple for nearly two decades. This decision has left many fans angered, as Auto Club Speedway holds a special place in many hearts.

Yet, this is just the tip of the iceberg. Respected NASCAR journalist Bob Pockrass has set the fire ablaze with the recent revelation that “Texas likely moves to spring,” opening the door to not one but two possible new playoff venues, fundamentally reshaping the playoff landscape.


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This ripple effect is not confined to the postseason; it extends to the regular season, as Pockrass disclosed, “If two weeks off for the Olympics & no doubleheader or midweek race, that makes Darlington the regular-season finale.”

This sets into motion a drastic departure from the norm, where NASCAR’s short-lived tradition of concluding the regular season at the iconic Daytona Superspeedway is being disrupted. This news has left fans disheartened as the 2024 schedule holds a regular-season finale without Daytona’s backdrop.

Initially, there was hope that Montreal would join the schedule, but those hopes have diminished. Iowa Speedway, although owned by NASCAR, has not hosted a national series race for 4 years. Yet, it emergeS as the next-best option. The Next Gen car’s performance on short tracks is also a concern bubbling in the midst of this news.

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Fans rally to preserve tradition as Daytona faces farewell


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This decision has been met with an outpouring of disappointment and nostalgia, as fans voiced their concerns on Twitter. One fan succinctly captured the sentiment reflecting the emotional attachment fans have to the iconic track, saying, “Why take it away from Daytona?” 

Many fans view this change as a mistake, with one commenting, “No Daytona as the regular season finale? That’s a mistake.” Some found it “genuinely hilarious” to see Daytona featured in the playoffs instead. For others, the decision challenges the cherished tradition of having Daytona as the culmination of the regular season. As one fan put it, “Killed the tradition once, kept doing it there.” 

Another fan passionately argued, “I don’t see NASCAR not having Daytona as the regular-season finale, the aspect of ‘anyone can win and make it into the playoffs’ gets money and views, especially a plate track.”


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Racing Community Drops Brutal Verdict Despite NASCAR’s Welcome Bristol Move

With everything still shrouded in secrecy, all eyes are on the Iowa governor’s news conference scheduled for Tuesday morning, where the unveiling of the fate of the 0.8-mile Iowa speedway will finally take center stage.

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Written by:

Rashi Shetty


One take at a time

Rashi Shetty is a NASCAR author at EssentiallySports. Her passion for the sport extends beyond the thrill of on-track racing, as she finds the behind-the-scenes aspects of car development and sportsmanship equally captivating. Her favorite motorsports moment of 2023 is the NASCAR Garage 56 entry at Le Mans.
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Edited by:

Nischal Kandpal