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Biggest WINS of the 2024 NASCAR Schedule

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Joshua Lipowski

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The 2024 NASCAR Schedule has received some scrutiny, but there are plenty of positives to take from it. From a brand new track to some intriguing date swaps to the return of a “Crown Jewel”, let’s take a look at the biggest wins of the 2024 NASCAR schedule.

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The Return of Iowa Speedway

Iowa Speedway more than proved its’ place in the motorsports landscape with the incredible IndyCar weekends it has hosted the last two seasons. NASCAR is finally giving the track a chance to host a Cup Series race a decade after they purchased the race track. The racing product may be a cause for concern given the current state of the Next-Gen short track product, but, the track does have a lot going for it.

First off, it has multiple banking angles which means multi-groove racing. The track also has an old, worn-out surface that is sure to produce tire wear and cause drivers to search around for grip. It may not be the traditional bump-and-run, beating and banging short track racing, but it fits the Next-Gen car better than other short tracks on the schedule currently do. Add to that, the Iowa fans will certainly show up and show out when NASCAR comes to town.

The Return of the Brickyard 400

NASCAR’s fourth “Crown Jewel” finally returns in 2024 as the Brickyard 400 is back. The three-year experiment on the Indy Road Course was worthwhile given how the Brickyard 400 had decreased in relevance over the years, but, times have changed. The Next-Gen car is giving many hope that the racing product will improve, and it just feels right seeing the cars go the right way around the oval.

There are some concerns pertaining to the racing product, but, mainly it surrounds the fan turnout. Indianapolis Motor Speedway has 250,000 grandstand seats, so, even a 100,000 fan turnout would leave large swaths of empty grandstands. The optics of the event may not be great, but the racing product could deter some of those issues.

The Return of Concrete Bristol in the Spring

This was announced a while back as well, but this is still a big win for NASCAR. While Bristol Dirt was a worthwhile experiment, fans were upset that it took a race away from one of NASCAR’s most popular race tracks. While the short track product needs some work, the multiple grooves that Bristol provides make it fit the Next-Gen car better than other short tracks.

The spring race at Bristol is also a traditional race. When you say Food City 500 to a NASCAR fan, they think of bright sunshine (hopefully) and the great moments of the Bristol spring race. It’s a traditional race, and it’s always cool to bring back tradition.

The Chicago Street Race Returns

The Chicago Street Race was a win this year from an on-track product perspective, but rain largely hampered the festivities outside of the race. The race deserved a second chance, hopefully with good weather, and it seems it will happen.

Again, the Chicago Street Race still hinges on whether or not the city supports it, and it still may not be a long-term thing for NASCAR to stay. However, as long as it is on the schedule, it has the potential to be a “Crown Jewel”, and it also brings in a new audience.

Darlington as the Regular Season Finale

This is a bit controversial amongst some fans, but, overall, NASCAR should be applauded for keeping the Southern 500 on its’ rightful, Labor Day weekend slot. The reason Darlington was moved out of the Playoffs was because the schedule as a whole was pushed back a week from late July onward because of the two-week Olympic break.

The bottom line is that the Southern 500 is a crown jewel, and this decision shows that NASCAR values that event brand. Even if it shifts out of the Playoffs, it is still the Southern 500.

The 2024 schedule is far from a perfect one, but there are plenty of things to be happy about with the schedules. What are some other things that are good about the 2024 schedule?

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Picture of Joshua Lipowski

Joshua Lipowski

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