Since joining the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series circuit in 1998, Las Vegas Motor Speedway has had just one race date on the calendar, but starting in 2018, that changes.
On Wednesday afternoon, the track and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority announced a $2.5 million partnership that would bring a second Cup Series weekend to the facility starting next season.
With the schedule already jam packed and NASCAR not looking to add any race dates, that would mean one of the other tracks in Speedway Motorsports, Inc’s portfolio would have to give up one of their dates to accommodate Las Vegas. Wednesday’s announcement confirmed the date would come from New Hampshire Motor Speedway as their September race weekend in the playoffs would move to Las Vegas.
Along with the Cup Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races from New Hampshire moving to Las Vegas, the standalone NASCAR Xfinity Series race from Kentucky in September will also move to Vegas in 2018 to create a tripleheader weekend in the fall. The current standalone Truck Series race at Las Vegas will move to the spring race date to create a second tripleheader weekend.
The two tripleheader weekends will make Las Vegas the only track on the circuit to host all three national NASCAR series twice during a given season.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for Speedway Motorsports and Las Vegas Motor Speedway to create a NASCAR spectacle worthy of the greatest racing in the world and the Entertainment Capital of the World,” said Speedway Motorsports, Inc. President and Chief Executive Officer Marcus Smith.
“It’s taken a tremendous amount of work to make this happen, and we are very thankful to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and NASCAR for their support in our endeavor to create a triple-header NASCAR weekend in such a world-class destination.”
Though New Hampshire and Kentucky are both losing a race weekend next season, Smith was quick to reassure the fans of those facilities that SMI remains committed to them.
“Fans and tourism officials in New Hampshire and Kentucky should know that we are still very committed to creating motorsports entertainment in those regions,” Smith added.
“We will work hard to make sure the July NASCAR race weekends that we will continue to host in New Hampshire and Kentucky are bigger and better than ever before for our fans, sponsors and stakeholders.”