Is NASCAR in Trouble?

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Coming off a spectacular weekend of racing from the” Last Great Colosseum” being Bristol Motor Speedway, race fans surely would have noticed the lack of people in the stands.  This seems to be a common trend as the NASCAR series travels from track to track. Fans have had the pleasure all season long of witnessing some of the closest finishes in NASCAR history as well as phenomenal side by side racing, all the things both fans and drivers themselves have lobbied for, but where are the crowds?

Is NASCAR in Trouble?

Starting from the biggest race of the year, the Daytona 500, the fans saw great action and a finish so close, neither of the front two drivers knew who the winner was.  Race after race the on track action was excellent with new faces racing upfront, and finish that were almost too close to call.

Sundays attendance, although it was not announced, appeared to be less than half, and there could be multiple reasons why.  First of all the price of gas only seems to climb higher and higher making the trek by car to see these races seem farther and farther out of reach for the average family.  Then if the trek is made by car, the family needs lodging, and hotels on average have been known to triple their prices for race weekends.  Why this is allowed race fans will never know, but it happens consistently.  The price for the race ticket itself can be costly, especially at the premium events.

Once at the track, driver merchandise flies off the racks but its not because its all on sale.  The days of going to Bob Evans for a $10 pasta dinner and heading to the track to purchase a $15 hat are long gone.  The “swag” you can buy now a days, from autographed items, shirts and sweaters, to even replica and authentic helmets, are available but at a more hefty price. That hat is now $40, the t-shirt (pit shirt) can be $80.

Economy of course always plays a factor as well but its a shame because the product NASCAR has put on the track has been great, the drivers love the new down force packages and the racing has been stellar, too bad there are less and less fans to see it.

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