Will NASCAR Ever Get Back The Fans They Once Had? Knowledgeable sources in the motor racing community here in the USA and elsewhere think that motorsports has seen its best days behind it.
But shortly after that, the fall off started. In fact, there were already indications of an erosion beginning even prior to that, if one was able to see the signs. Ticket sales began to tank, and at the same time, TV ratings indicated a major displeasure by hard core NASCAR fans. And fickle fans left for brighter pastures.
It all happened for a lot of reasons. In NASCAR’s case, they chased away the faithful old timers when the sanction leadership chose to focus on the 18-35 year old fan at the cost of losing the steady old timers. At the same time, new fans must have found other forms of entertainment because they left in a hurry. Let’s face it, when you go to a race and see empty seats, you think, “What am I doing here?”Those watching on TV also saw empty seats and asked themselves why they were watching the NASCAR races? It wasn’t the place to be. The empty seats also impacted the sale of advance tickets significantly. Why tie up money when you can get good seats right up until race day?
After a dozen years of high flying popularity, a number of factors turned against NASCAR and other motorsports sanctions. More than likely the economy had a lot to do with it. But that wasn’t the whole reason for the slump. Like a “perfect storm”, NASCAR, the 800 lb. Gorilla, started to sink under its own weight.
Another theory is that a large chunk young males today have fallen out of love with the automobile, no doubt due to the fact that you have to have an expensive computer to work on them. That resulted in having to take your already expensive car to a dealer who has all of the equipment to find out what’s wrong. They would work on their cars themselves and could relate better to those NASCAR, Indy Car and Formula 1 pit crew men servicing the race cars at the track. Today, the young folks, both male and female, are more preoccupied with their iPods, droids and like. You see them on their cell phones, taking pictures, listening to music, communicating by e-mail and texting. All that on the same device.
It’s been said and written that the new social communicating via these new electronic aids is obsessive. At lunch time, just go into any fast food restaurant and there they are, all banging away on their keyboards. You also see drivers of vehicles in traffic on their cell phones. And of course you’ve read blaring news reports of how talking on the cell phone and texting have caused serious accidents.
Some 16-year kids don’t even bother to get their driver’s licenses these days, especially if they live in an urban area. Public transportation is the norm or they ride a bicycle, skate board, roller skates or even moped and scooters. In the old days, reaching 16-years old and getting a learner’s permit was the bridge into adulthood. That’s no longer the case. NASCAR, in the meantime, has been making wholesale changes trying to quickly respond to the complaints of fans they’ve left them. But is it too late to woo them back?
I guess time will tell. The MotorSportsNews.Net(work)