Well, what a season the 2017 NASCAR calendar was. We have a new champion (Martin Truex Jr.) Martin worked very hard with his team to achieve that win especially with all the difficulties Martin and his team faced during the year and losing one of their team members near the end of the season to a heart attack, Jim Watson. We have a worthy champion and for the most part made everybody smile, including the race fans.
In 2018 we are going to be without racing legend Dale Earnhardt Jr. So, just how of much of an effect is that going to have on the fans, the track attendances and the TV viewing figures? 2018 is not just going to be about the changing of the guard, but it is also going to be about the start of a transition. The real question is will the sport be able to weather this change? Some fans have the opinion that the sport has been damaged too much and it is taking a turn for the worse and the sport is dying.
I do think the organization keep the fans and people in the dark about the future developments of NASCAR and the sport. As the saying goes in business, what matters the most is what goes on behind closed doors. As a full time entrepreneur and company owner, I only know too well that is where most of the business decisions are made.
Brad Kesolowski made a statement this year that the sport desperately needs a manufacturer or two. Brad was absolutely spot on with that statement. NASCAR will not take a step back just to please fans that are either very unhappy with the changes that have been made or fans that have walked away from the sport. Many spectator stands were underpopulated this year at some of the venues. For example, Michigan’s attendance was appalling this summer in relation to past seasons.
If NASCAR is to attract a more global audience then they are going to have to bring a big name manufacturer to the sport. I read this year in a few articles on the internet that NASCAR has had some discussions with Dodge about their possible return. The biggest name in global motor racing is Honda, HRC (Honda Racing Corporation). If HRC were to join NASCAR it would change the whole face of the sport. When Honda competes as a manufacturer in a motor racing series they always attract a crowd especially when they are competitive. In the last few years Honda has done very poorly in Formula One, which is very uncharacteristic of them. However this would be a very exciting venture for Honda and especially for the sport of NASCAR.
One thing is for sure moving forward there is a need for a balance to be created to please everybody that loves this great sport otherwise a very bad downward spiral will happen.
NASCAR has suffered spells like that before but with the media money that is at stake today I am not sure if the sport or the organization will be able to recover effectively this time.
This week NASCAR failed to arrive at a successful deal with COORS. A sport this size should be a no brainer, but COORS for some reason does not think so. As I said, what goes on behind closed doors.
One thing is for sure the warnings are certainly there but the question is will these warnings be looked upon or will Brian France Jr. and Co, dismiss them? I hope not.
I wish all NASCAR fans who love this great sport a fantastic New Years Eve and a very prosperous and enjoyable 2018.
Story Credited to Michael Fallas. Journalist and Editor of Nascarview.com
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