NASCAR Cup
NASCAR Cup
08 Feb
-
09 Feb
Event finished
08 Feb
-
17 Feb
Event finished
21 Feb
-
23 Feb
Race in
17 Hours
:
42 Minutes
:
42 Seconds
R
Fontana
28 Feb
-
01 Mar
Next event in
4 days
R
Phoenix
06 Mar
-
08 Mar
Next event in
11 days
R
Atlanta
13 Mar
-
15 Mar
Next event in
18 days
R
Homestead
20 Mar
-
22 Mar
Next event in
25 days
R
27 Mar
-
29 Mar
Next event in
32 days
R
Bristol
03 Apr
-
05 Apr
Next event in
39 days
R
Richmond
17 Apr
-
19 Apr
Next event in
53 days
R
Talladega
24 Apr
-
26 Apr
Next event in
60 days
R
01 May
-
03 May
Next event in
67 days
R
Martinsville
07 May
-
09 May
Next event in
73 days
R
All-Star
15 May
-
16 May
Next event in
81 days
R
Charlotte
22 May
-
24 May
Next event in
88 days
R
29 May
-
31 May
Next event in
95 days
R
Michigan
05 Jun
-
07 Jun
Next event in
102 days
R
12 Jun
-
14 Jun
Next event in
109 days
R
Chicagoland
19 Jun
-
21 Jun
Next event in
116 days
R
26 Jun
-
28 Jun
Next event in
123 days
R
Indianapolis
03 Jul
-
05 Jul
Next event in
130 days
R
Kentucky
09 Jul
-
11 Jul
Next event in
136 days
R
17 Jul
-
19 Jul
Next event in
144 days
R
Michigan II
07 Aug
-
09 Aug
Next event in
165 days
R
Watkins Glen
14 Aug
-
16 Aug
Next event in
172 days
R
Dover II
21 Aug
-
23 Aug
Next event in
179 days
R
Daytona II
27 Aug
-
29 Aug
Next event in
185 days
R
Darlington
04 Sep
-
06 Sep
Next event in
193 days
R
Richmond II
10 Sep
-
12 Sep
Next event in
199 days
R
Bristol II
17 Sep
-
19 Sep
Next event in
206 days
R
Las Vegas II
25 Sep
-
27 Sep
Next event in
214 days
R
Talladega II
02 Oct
-
04 Oct
Next event in
221 days
R
Charlotte II
09 Oct
-
11 Oct
Next event in
228 days
R
Kansas II
16 Oct
-
18 Oct
Next event in
235 days
R
Texas II
23 Oct
-
25 Oct
Next event in
242 days
R
Martinsville II
30 Oct
-
01 Nov
Next event in
249 days
R
Phoenix II
06 Nov
-
08 Nov
Next event in
256 days

Kurt Busch unexcited by 2019 schedule, wants shake-up

shares
comments
Kurt Busch unexcited by 2019 schedule, wants shake-up
By:
Apr 12, 2018, 3:34 PM

Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kurt Busch says he is not excited about the 2019 NASCAR Cup series schedule because he feels it needs to be “shaken up”.

Kurt Busch, Stewart-Haas Racing, Monster Energy/Haas Automation Ford Fusion
General view from the roof of Bristol
Kurt Busch, Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Fusion
A general view
Kurt Busch, Stewart-Haas Racing, Ford Fusion Haas Automation/Monster Energy
A general view of the track from turn one
Kurt Busch, Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Fusion and Ryan Blaney, Team Penske Ford Fusion
General view
Kurt Busch, Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Fusion

NASCAR announced its 2019 Cup calendar earlier this month and it proved to be identical to ’18, except for minor Easter date moves to accommodate the holiday.

Ahead of the current season drivers had mixed opinions on NASCAR’s rigid calendar, with SHR’s Kevin Harvick describing the fixed Homestead-Miami finale as “stale.”

Busch says it's difficult to be excited by the 2019 schedule, and that greater collaboration between tracks, the International Speedway Corporation and Speedway Motorsports Inc is needed.

“I just saw them [NASCAR] release the schedule and it's a carbon copy in 2019 as it was in '18,” Busch said on SiriusXM NASCAR radio. “Now, we need to shake up our schedule. There are plenty of racetracks that need to learn how to cooperate with the ISCs of the world, the SMIs of the world.

“People [circuits] need to trade different dates around. I mean, we're going to battle rain in Bristol this weekend and it might be 40 degrees [around four degrees Celsius] again for the third week in a row.

“There's just different things we should do with the schedule. We've got to do more things for our fans, more things for the media, to keep things more interesting and exciting when we're moving and shaking.

“But seeing this schedule for next year, I'm not excited.”

In 2015, NASCAR announced it had signed five-year sanctioning agreements with the 23 tracks that host Cup series races. NASCAR also reached the same agreement with the tracks that host Xfinity and Truck series races. The deals mean the current tracks will host their events through at least the 2020 season. Although the actual race date can change, the deals make it virtually impossible the tracks which make up the schedules can change before the 2021 season.

Busch added that he backed Harvick’s call for the finale to be rotated.

“Harvick's right, there should be a committee that bids on the final race of the year, like a Superbowl committee,” he said.

“We don't need to be at Homestead every year, but Ford's got a nice contract with Homestead and they push hard to sell vehicles in southern Florida.”

The SHR driver also believes that mid-week races would allow NASCAR to try new circuits and build the atmosphere lacking at other circuits.

NASCAR stopped releasing attendance figures in 2012, although track attendance has generally declined in recent years.

Mid-week races?

Busch says the mid-week races could be a showcase for tracks outside the current Cup calendar.

“It [midweek races] would work at a track like Iowa that is starving poor for a NASCAR race,” he said.

“Would it work one time? Yes. Would it work two times? I don't know. But then there's Nashville Speedway, Evergreen Speedway up in Washington State.”

Busch pointed to Eldora Speedway as an example of what midweek races could aspire to, with the dirt track becoming increasingly prominent thanks to Tony Stewart’s investment at the track and the Dirt Derby.

“There's tracks everywhere up the country that struggle to really hold the seating capacity that we really need,” he said.

“But, are we trying to do that or are we trying to put in 40,000 people, pack the house, and create the electric atmosphere that Tony Stewart's done at Eldora Speedway with the trucks racing there.”

Next article
NASCAR: All-Star Race "perfect opportunity to try something different"

Previous article

NASCAR: All-Star Race "perfect opportunity to try something different"

Next article

Roundtable: NASCAR's decision to admit missed call at Texas

Roundtable: NASCAR's decision to admit missed call at Texas
Load comments

About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Kurt Busch
Teams Stewart-Haas Racing
Author Tom Errington