NASCAR could have crowds topping 25,000 in back-to-back races next month, marking the largest sporting events in the U.S. since the COVID-19 pandemic halted sports in March.
The July 15 All-Star Race moves from Charlotte Motor Speedway to Bristol Motor Speedway and the half-mile track will host up to 30,000 fans.
Four days later, the Cup Series races at Texas Motor Speedway. The state of Texas allows 50% capacity for professional and collegiate sporting venues. That could allow Texas Motor Speedway to have 50,000 fans or more, depending on what track officials decide. They have not announced their plans.
“Fans are key, that’s what drives our sport,” said Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer during a Monday night press conference. “It’s important (for teams) to be able to bring some of their sponsors there to entertain clients. We’re working our way toward that. We’re going to do it in a safe way.”
Sunday’s Cup race at Talladega Superspeedway will have up to 5,000 fans who purchased grandstand seats. That follows last weekend’s Cup race at Homestead-Miami Speedway that had up to 1,000 military personnel and family members as guests.
After Talladega, Cup races at Pocono (June 27-28), Indianapolis (July 5) and Kentucky (July 12) will not have fans.
The July 15 All-Star Race was to have been at Charlotte Motor Speedway but the state’s increase in confirmed COVID-19 cases made it apparent that the race could not be held with fans.
“Just over the last few days, we’ve been able to see there is a hot spot brewing in Charlotte,” said Marcus Smith, president and CEO of Speedway Motorsports.
Tennessee has opened more of its state and moving the All-Star Bristol made sense for Speedway Motorsports officials.
Here is what will be done for All-Star Race tickets, what rules will be in place at Bristol and more.
Tickets are on sale now. Upper bowl seats are $65 each. Lower bowl seats are $35 each. Before purchasing tickets, fans must agree to follow all facility rules and agree to an assumption of risk waiver.
Fans who purchased tickets for the All-Star Race at Charlotte may request a 120% credit or can request a refund. If they request credit, they can use it for any remaining Speedway Motorsports event this year with fans or 2021.
AT THE TRACK
All fans age 3 and older will be encouraged to wear a cloth face covering.
Fans may be required to submit to a non-contact temperature check.
Fans may be presented with a brief questionnaire before entering and confirm they are not experiencing COVID-19-like symptoms and/or have not been recently exposed to the virus.
Fans must maintain a distance of at least 6 feet between their group and others.
Fans are reminded to wash their hands regularly with soap and water.
A limited number of overnight camping spaces will be available for purchase.