Recently we have learned about what the 2020 NASCAR Cup Schedule will look like, but the next question you must ask is, “What will 2021 look like?” To recap why we need to ask this is because NASCAR currently has a contract with its current tracks that expire at the end of 2020, which means we have the potential of seeing new tracks come into the Cup Series for 2021. Will we see the Nashville Fairgrounds land a cup date? Will we see a new road course on the schedule? Will fans get their wish come true and bring back North Wilkesboro? Look down below as I will talk about what I think the 2021 NASCAR Cup Schedule will look like. Remember that this is all opinionated and I would love to have discussions with you on what you may think.
While there were rumblings of the Daytona 500 being moved to the 3rd or 4th race of the schedule, I think NASCAR will keep it as it is and continue the tradition of NASCAR’s Super Bowl kicking off the season. Now on to the West Coast Sweep…
Why move Sonoma to earlier in the schedule? Honestly, I feel like this make it a complete west coast sweep adding in Sonoma, plus NASCAR at a “Green Sonoma” would be an interesting shake-up, and a different look of things. Especially in the 2019 race, that the track is bringing back “The Carousel” and this would make a four-race west coast sweep instead of three.
At this point, Atlanta on to Martinsville gets pushed back a week thanks to Sonoma moving up in the schedule. We are now at the All-Star break as Dover would appear between Talladega and Martinsville for 2020. For 2021 however…
NASCAR All-Star Race
With the recent announcement of World Wide Technology become the track sponsor for Gateway, I think this track is in a good spot to land a cup date. St. Louis is a good market, and this is a track that has long awaited for NASCAR’s top circuit to come to the “Gateway to the West.” This is also a good landing spot for Bubba Wallace and Kevin Harvick, who’s sponsors are based out of St. Louis, Busch (Harvick) and World Wide Technology (Wallace).
A lot of people want to see Iowa on the Cup Schedule and this would replace the Dover race I mentioned earlier with the 7/8-mile track. This would make a good Saturday night race. Sorry Dover fans, you keep your fall date though, don’t worry.
Why did I move the schedule around this way? All four of these tracks are in the Great Lakes region. With the new sponsorship model, this could be a good section of the schedule to promote and personally would be a fun road trip for me! Travel-wise, I would love to see these five tracks in a section of the schedule. Perhaps call it the “Great Lakes Rush” and put a fun deal together for fans to go to all of these races. I added Road America because I feel like this could be a new road course that could make the schedule.
START OF NASCAR PLAYOFFS
From this point the playoff schedule we will see in 2020 will not change for 2021. There you have it, my thoughts on what the 36-race schedule will look like in 2021. The reason that tracks like Rockingham, Circuit of the Americas, and Nashville Fairgrounds is not on the schedule is because realistically these tracks would not immediately return to the Cup schedule. Nashville Fairgrounds especially has run into roadblocks involving the MLS Stadium being built next to it, complaints and other things. However, these tracks COULD be on the schedule five, six or seven years down the road. I can see Rockingham coming back with it being bought out and turning the area into an entertainment complex. Circuit of the Americas would be a good choice, despite comments from TMS president Eddie Gossage believing there would be no way COTA could get a NASCAR race. In terms of what this could set up for three, five, eight or ten years from now, only time will tell. What do you think the 2021 schedule will look like? Let’s start a discussion.