NASCAR will mark the debut of the Next Gen car by running the season-opening NASCAR Clash in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
The exhibition race, which has been held at Daytona International Speedway since its inception in 1979, will be. Feb. 6, 2022.
The race will be held a week before the Super Bowl in Los Angeles.
Details on driver eligibility and race format will be announced later.
The NASCAR Clash field will compete on a quarter-mile asphalt track inside the LA Memorial Coliseum, which has hosted two Olympics (1932 and 1984) and is scheduled to be the host for the 2028 games. The stadium also is home to the University of Southern California football team.
“I think we always felt like there was a bigger opportunity for the Clash in particular,” Ben Kennedy, NASCAR vice president of strategic initiatives, told NBC Sports. “And then to take it to new markets with new concepts with something like what we’re going to do at the Coliseum.
“We started some conversations with them a couple of years ago, and I think really part of the reason we’ve identified the LA Coliseum and the Los Angeles market is the number of fans that we have out here in LA. It’s the No. 1 market for number of fans in the United States. Have a ton of great fans, and you add on top of that having the ability to have such a unique event like a stadium race just a few short minutes from downtown Los Angeles.
“I think it really will make for a social event and something that fans in Los Angeles will want to come out for, and fans throughout the country and world will want to tune into.”
Kennedy confirmed that the Next Gen cars will race in the event after some talk in the garage that the current cars might be used for the race.
“I think part of the reasoning is going into next season, a Next Gen facility with the Next Gen schedule and really a fresh look and perspective on what the year is going to be and look like,” Kennedy sad.
“We felt like it was important to also introduce the Next Gen car as a part of that, and obviously have been working with our teams in getting their feedback and perspective on what that might look like for them. Ultimately landed on the Next Gen car going to the LA Coliseum.”
Tickets go on sale at 1 p.m. ET Thursday. Tickets start at $65 for adults and kids 12 & under starting as low as $10. Tickets can be purchased at http://www.nascar.com/LAColiseum
The rest of the 2022 NASCAR Cup schedule is set to be released Wednesday.