SBD/Issue 98/Leagues & Governing Bodies

DIS Working To Accommodate Fans As Daytona 500 Approaches

NASCAR Cuts Ticket Prices For Daytona 500
To Appeal To More Fans Dealing With Economy
Daytona Int'l Speedway (DIS) officials are "slashing ticket prices" for Saturday's Daytona 500 and "have been working with local hotels in order to stop the price-gouging and make rooms more affordable for fans during these dire economic times," according to Mike Bianchi of the ORLANDO SENTINEL. But Bianchi wrote, "Why is it that NASCAR and its track owners are only now trying to take care of the fans? Shouldn't this have always been their standard operating procedure? ... Surely the national economy is mostly to blame, but so, too, is NASCAR's arrogance. The powers-that-be never fathomed there could be 10,000-15,000 unsold Daytona 500 tickets only a week before a race that for last year sold out the previous October" (ORLANDO SENTINEL, 2/8). In Virginia, Dustin Long wrote, "Now is your time, NASCAR Nation. As the recession forces many of you to make tough choices, it also makes your voice louder. Your actions -- from how often you attend races to how much you watch on TV -- will make clear what you really think of NASCAR. And what the sport needs to do to keep you. ... Consider this your year, 'The Year of the Fan'" (Norfolk VIRGINIAN-PILOT, 2/8).

MAKING NOISE: Driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. Thursday at NASCAR Media Day said track owners and operators "need to go back to work. ... They ain't had to sell tickets for a long time and none of them remembers how or knew how or ever learned how. ... They can dump that responsibility on drivers all they want, but the responsibility really lies in their hands. ... We already do a lot. We do (expletive) plenty." Meanwhile, SMI Chair & CEO Bruton Smith had suggested that drivers "do more to help racetracks sell tickets," and Earnhardt said, "I don't really want to go after Bruton; he is way too big." Earnhardt: "I am not telling anyone how to do their job" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 2/7). More Earnhardt: "I just wish it was easier to go see a race. I want the fans to have whatever they want. I want the racing to be like they want it. I want the drivers to have such diverse personalities that everyone has a favorite. ... You remember how it was 10 years ago? It seemed like nobody was really complaining about little things like camper parking, the traffic or the cost of a parking pass for the infield, whatever. ... Now these are big issues for some reason. (NASCAR) has to figure out how to fix that" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 2/7).

Writer Feels Daytona Speedweeks Needs To
Adjust Its Schedule To Be More Fan Appealing
WHERE'S THE BUZZ? In North Carolina, Ed Hardin writes, "One week from the 51st running of the Daytona 500, there's no buzz in the air. ... With banks failing and companies laying off workers at an historic rate and the global economy wrecking before our eyes, we start another racing season with fewer teams, fewer impact drivers and fewer fans" (Greensboro NEWS & RECORD, 2/9). In Charlotte, David Poole writes Daytona Speedweeks "badly needs a schedule shuffle." Saturday's Budweiser Shootout "should be a one-day event this Wednesday," and Thursday "should be media day and a fan fest, with drivers spending half a day inside the track meeting fans and half with the media talking about the Daytona 500 and the season ahead." Friday "should be Daytona 500 practice, an afternoon Truck Series race and the Gatorade Duels to set the 500 lineup at night," while Saturday is "Cup practice and the Nationwide race, and Sunday is the 500." But that is "not going to happen because there are fans' pockets to be emptied, and it behooves everyone who does the fleecing to have people here for nearly two weeks" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 2/9).

Return to top
Video Powered By - Castfire CMS Powered By - Sitecore

Report a Bug