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Report: Mexico or Canada Could Take Richmond’s Place in 2025

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What’s Happening?

As the 2025 NASCAR schedule slowly comes into focus, everyone wants to know the answer to one question: Will NASCAR race internationally? Well, Jordan Bianchi of The Athletic reports that negotiations are “Progressing” with Mexico City and Montreal to host the NASCAR Cup Series in 2025, with Richmond likely losing a date to accommodate the addition of a track. How will all of this work on the 2025 schedule?

  • Mexico and Canada have been on NASCAR’s radar for some time. NASCAR sanctions series in both countries and Canada was close to having a date on the schedule in 2024.
  • Richmond losing a date on the schedule to Mexico and/or Canada is not necessarily new news. However, the potential of both joining the schedule opens a scenario where at least one more track would have to lose a date.
  • Fans would love to see NASCAR go international. Garage 56 opened up many potential international opportunities for NASCAR, and many feel it’s time to take advantage.

Mexico and/or Canada?

Bianchi did not specify whether or not both tracks would be on the schedule in 2025. It’s worth noting that Steve Phelps told Fox Sports’ Chris Myers before the Daytona 500 this February that he would be “Surprised” if NASCAR did not race both “North of the border” and “South of the border.”

If NASCAR can race in both Mexico and Canada, odds are they will try to make both work. NASCAR has been very invested in both countries as both have their own NASCAR Touring Series. On top of that, NASCAR has raced in both countries before with the Xfinity Series racing in Mexico City from 2005 through 2008 and Montreal from 2007 through 2012. The Truck Series also raced in Canada from 2013 through 2019 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario.

This most recent report from Bianchi slightly deviates from his last report back in the spring. He mentioned that Mexico was the “Likeliest” possibility, whereas Canada was “50-50” at best. Obviously, the conversation has shifted a little bit, and it seems both tracks are genuine possibilities.

If they were to race in Mexico and/or Canada, it would most likely occur on a road course, such as the Autodromo Hermanos Rodrigues in Mexico City and Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Canada. Both tracks are easily NASCAR-ready, and they wouldn’t have to undergo major changes to host a Cup Series race.

Richmond Losing a Date, but Who Else?

Bianchi said in that same spring report that Richmond would lose a date should Mexico join the schedule, and that remains true as the Cup Series season reaches the halfway point. Richmond losing a date is not surprising to many, as the track has suffered from dwindling attendance and a lackluster racing product in recent years. Both combine for a recipe for a track losing a Cup Series date.

Now, what if both Mexico and Canada are added to the schedule? If that happens, NASCAR would have to drop another date.

The issue is that there aren’t many tracks with two dates left, and each of these tracks are unlikely to lose a date. The options aside from Richmond are Daytona, Atlanta (SMI track), Las Vegas (SMI track), Phoenix, Bristol (SMI track), Martinsville, Talladega, Kansas, and Darlington. Each of these tracks either sells out fairly often, is owned by SMI and not NASCAR, or puts on some of the best racing in the series.

That means a track with one date may be dropped from the schedule. Sadly, Iowa is the easiest one to drop, given its small market and the track’s capacity of only about 30,000 spectators, which is small even by modern NASCAR standards.

Maybe a surprise venue could be dropped from the schedule, but it’s tough to imagine any of these NASCAR-owned venues dropping a date: Homestead, Watkins Glen, and Michigan. Pocono is independently owned, but it sold out last year. Indianapolis is Indianapolis, so it’s tough to imagine NASCAR losing that track.

Maybe the Chicago Street Race could give up a date if things go haywire politically, but both NASCAR and the city seem committed, for now, to honoring that three-year agreement that runs through 2025. Either way, the future of Iowa looks uncertain, especially as NASCAR has not yet confirmed the track will return in 2025. However, we won’t know until we get official word.

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Joshua Lipowski

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