By Luis Torres, Staff Writer
For the first time in the history of The Clash, it’ll not take place at “The World Center of Racing.” Instead, it’ll move to “The City of Angels” as NASCAR announced Tuesday they’ll kick off the sport’s 74th season at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Southern California.
It’s set to take place Sunday, February 6, 2022, a week before Super Bowl LVI held at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood. Two weeks after the 44th edition of The Clash, the 64th Daytona 500 will take place.
The stadium purpose circuit will be a quarter-mile short track asphalt where the Next Gen cars will make its anticipated debut.
Since 1979, The Clash was held at the Daytona International Speedway with all but one taking place at the 2.5-mile circuit as a buildup to “The Great American Race.”
NASCAR Senior Vice President Ben Kennedy said in a press release he’s thrilled of bringing the sport into the monstrous market.
“Los Angeles is synonymous with major sports and entertainment events, so we seized an innovative opportunity to showcase NASCAR at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum,” said Kennedy. “We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to take center stage in this market as we get our 2022 season underway.”
Tickets will go on sale to the public Thursday at 1:00 p.m. ET. Those who’ve already purchased tickets for The Clash at Daytona will receive credit to their accounts. They’ll also have additional 20% of the total amount paid for tickets and parking.
In addition of racing at USC Trojans territory, NASCAR also confirmed the return of Auto Club Speedway in Fontana after a year absence due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Next year’s running is expected to be the final race of the original two-mile oval before being converted into a short track.
SoCal is no stranger of kicking the NASCAR season off as the Cup Series began their campaign at Riverside International Raceway from 1970-1981. Since then, Daytona has become a staple ground of stock car racing’s new seasons.
The rest of the 2022 NASCAR calendar across the three national touring series (Cup, Xfinity and Trucks) will be announced at a later date.