The Hendrick Motorsports driver doesn’t think the number of races matters but rather how far into fall and football season the racing schedule stretches.
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Chase Elliott has not hidden his feelings about the length of the NASCAR Cup Series schedule, tweeting earlier this week “Less = More” and “I like night races too.”
NASCAR released the 2023 schedule on Wednesday, which will span 38 weekends beginning with the Clash at the Coliseum on Feb. 5 and the Daytona 500 on Feb. 19. The slate includes the All-Star Race heading to North Wilkesboro Speedway on May 21 and the first-ever street race in Chicago on July 2. The season doesn’t conclude until Nov. 5, when the NASCAR Cup Series Championship will be at Phoenix.
Elliott has called for an earlier end to the season before, and when asked to elaborate by NBC Sports, the Hendrick Motorsports star said, “36 (races) … 45 … 50 … I don’t think it matters how many races we have, but I don’t see any reason in competing against NFL football when that starts. In my opinion, that’s not a battle we’re ever going to win. I think we should be smart about that.”
The 2020 NASCAR Cup Series champion feels a “more compact” schedule is a better move over a shorter period of time rather than the current nine months, regardless of how many races there are. Since ’01, the schedule has featured 36 races that extend well into the fall.
He thinks it could attract larger audiences.
“I don’t make the rules and nobody asks my opinion that does,” he said, per NBC Sports. “And that’s completely fine, I’m not asking for that job. I don’t want that job. But I’m a firm believer that less is more, in the sense of the timing of a schedule and when we could end our season to make the most for TV ratings and things of that nature. I think we could do better, personally.”
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