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Either change the New Hampshire track or change the schedule

By admin | September 25, 2011

By Richard Allen


It seems bad enough that so many NASCAR races end with fuel mileage stretch runs that feature drivers coasting around tracks in an effort to outlast rather than out run the competition. But to make things worse, the New Hampshire Motor Speedway is one that seems to rarely lend itself to good racing. That imperfect storm proved to churn out a race that proved uneventful and difficult to watch on Sunday afternoon.

The Sprint Cup Series contested its first race at NHMS in 1993 and has since held 34 events on the one-mile facility. It seems as though there have been very few instances in which viewers or attendees could have come away from a race there feeling as though they had seen a truly competitive and hard fought show.

The track’s relatively flat design and slick pavement seem to foster a situation in which drivers are merely hanging on and logging laps rather than actually racing. Cars often spread out and run in parade formation until the final few laps when some might be willing to chance a move around another car.

After Saturday’s Camping World Truck Series race at NHMS, driver and team owner Kevin Harvick admitted that the race was a “parade” and it was “terrible racing”. It would have been difficult to argue that point. After the Sprint Cup race that same statement could have easily been repeated.

All that said, it seems as if the time has come for changes to be made to this track. There would seem to be a couple of clear options. Either the speedway should have banking added to increase speeds, but more importantly, to create a situation in which cars can run side by side without losing traction and sliding into each other. Or, the track could be shortened to make it more ‘Richmond like’.

There are some challenges in regard to environmental issues but surely there is a way in which those could be overcome.

The only other alternative would seem to be a serious reworking of the schedule. NASCAR cannot afford such a snoozer of a race to be part of its Chase for the Championship, especially at a time when television viewers have so many other sporting options to choose from. Either changes need to be made to this track or changes need to be made to the Sprint Cup schedule for the good of the sport.

Topics: Articles |

18 Responses to “Either change the New Hampshire track or change the schedule”

  1. Paul3Jr Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 12:54 am

    I am with you this track is horrible in the chase spot. Its boring every year. They need to find a track where close finishes are the norm.

  2. zhills fan Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 4:14 am

    Terrible race. I watched the Red Sox get blasted instead.

  3. Charles Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 7:03 am

    Good example on why “shortening races” on a bad designed track will not improve racing!!

  4. Randy Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 7:27 am

    May not be the track but the cars and drivers racing. Same track Saturday afternoon saw 24 (at the line) lead changes in a 100 lap Modified race. That doesn’t count the numerous changes at other places on the track.

  5. Sue Rarick Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 7:38 am

    I’d comment on the racing but knowing it was going to be another mileage event I caught up with some work in the studio. This is one of the few chase races I’ve not watched, but there are more mileage races to miss, unfortunately.

  6. jerseygirl Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 7:51 am

    It was terrible watching ESPN’s broadcast too so I went back and forth between the NFL games (much more exciting) and relied mostly on trackpass to keep up with my driver.

    Plus this whole fuel mileage deal is a losing proposition - this is how the 10 race trophy is going to be awarded? What a joke.

  7. Erich Sturgill Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 8:14 am

    I didn’t watch yesterday because I knew what would happen. I agree the track is not so condusive to stock cars, but the problem with yesterday’s race lies with the cars, tires and drivers.

    IT’S THE SAME RACE EVERY WEEK! NASCAR is dead. I would rather listen online to the Knoxville Late Model Nationals this weekend–more interesting.

  8. WG Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 8:34 am

    It was boring but look forward to a Chase race that I can attend. Change the track….he has enough money to do it.

  9. Dawgville Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 3:49 pm

    They are still racing? Weird. Haven’t watched a lap since football season started. Good luck with that NASCAR!!! Can’t compete ever with the best, and most popular, sport in America.

  10. 43fan4life Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 3:56 pm

    I have been a NASCAR fan since the 70’s. This track could easily be taken off the schedule and I wouldn’t miss it. Worst racing, if you want to call it that, on the schedule. I rarely miss a race but the NHMS races are on my “find something else to do” list. Replace it with Darlington, make them earn their championship.

  11. Chris Fiegler Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    Do you guys think that the Sylvania 300 is the Worst Race of the Season? Personally I think that the Pocono Race in August was the worst Race of the Season.

  12. Chris Fiegler Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    Personally I think that the Good Sams RV Insurance 500 at Pocono was the Worst Race of the Season. I will be glad that Pocono is Shortned to 400 miles.

  13. Steve Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    I’m going to go with the vehicles that are put on the track. The modifieds continually put on a great show at the track and the ACT (regional late models) put on just as good of a show.

    Before all this Chase crap, guys actually raced hard at the place too and the races were exciting. This was back 7 years ago though when there was no Chase. Now, between points racing and a car that you can’t pass with (on any track for that matter) I’m gonna say its the car that is the problem, not the race track.

    Did any of you watch the Chicago race? That was worse if you ask me and that was the much hyped up “opening race of the Chase” in their big market they wanted. So what happened? It rained and it was a parade just like every other race.

    Rich, I usually like your articles and agree with most of them, but you are wrong to blame the track on this one, when so many other races this year have been just as bad.

  14. Tom Kingma Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    Maybe Nascar should look into increasing the leftside weight on these cars for the flat tracks .

  15. Mr. Tony Geinzer Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 6:56 pm

    Rich, I would like to say, why not turn Loudon into the Bristol of the Northland and to top it off, I want 2 Summer Races in the Granite State and I feel the Chase has worn out her welcome mat and I would love to tell NASCAR to tell Sprint to “Geaux Home” After 2013 and replace it with a decent sponsor, IE McDonalds or Coca Cola!

  16. Russ Edwards Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 8:26 pm

    Maybe its not the track, but the product being put on the track. I can remember the days when I loved to go to the track, and listened to every race on the radio. Then when they got on TV, the wife and I watched every one. No more. But maybe I’m just older.

    And a comment - looking at all the articles on Jayski, seems like since football and the Chase started, the number of people commenting on articles is down dramatically.

  17. Robert Rogers Says:
    September 26th, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    New Hampshire is the most boring Track on the Circuit. But that’s nothing new.
    When Nascar has to make up a Yellow Flag. You know that they want to bunch up the Field.
    Yes either take it off the Schedule, or put some Banking in the Turns.

  18. DC Says:
    September 27th, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    My race-watching has been going down for over a year anyway. But since I can remember, NHIS is one (really, two) I never bother to watch. BORRRRRRINNNNNNG! I take my car up to NHIS every once in a while with car clubs, and the road course is a LOT of fun. But the oval races are snoozefests very single time. The only “fond” memory is the feud between Michael Waltrip and Crabby, er, Robby Gordon.
    Losing a race would be absolutely devastating for the nice folks up in Loudon and the general area. So I would never wish they lose a race. But something drastically needs to change with that track.