Rumor: NASCAR Cup eyes Gateway race, will destroy IndyCar attendance (4th Update)
Gateway has received 5,000 ticket deposits for next June’s NASCAR Cup Series race in the first 24 hours they’ve been available.
The track got a three-year deal, and Owner Curtis Francois said he’s expecting a sellout of the 57K-seat venue.
By then the IndyCar will likely be history.
September 17, 2021
If you doubt what we predict, that IndyCar’s days are numbered at World Wide Technology Raceway (WWTR – formerly known as Gateway), we suggest you read this look back at history on this topic by George Phillips, titled Jumping in Bed With the Devil.
While we don’t agree with 100% of his conclusions, we do on most. Suffice it to say that in any given market, you are only going to be selling so many race tickets. If the NASCAR Cup race succeeds in that market, the IndyCar race will always whither and eventually die on the vine.
A case in point, in the opposite scenario, the Indy 500 dominates tickets sales in the Indianapolis Motor Speedway market. Attendance at all other races at IMS suck, including NASCAR.
That is one example where IndyCar won the battle against NASCAR, but 99% of the time they lose to NASCAR in a given market.
Already we see IndyCar attendance at Gateway getting less and less each year. Just wait until NASCAR comes to town.
September 14, 2021
This rumor will be upgraded to ‘fact’ tomorrow, so we’ll just make it ‘fact’ today.
The best quality of the folks at World Wide Technology Raceway is, fittingly, drive.
Led by owner Curtis Francois, they have worked diligently, passionately and creatively to grow the track’s presence in racing.
And the culmination will be revealed Wednesday — a news conference at Ballpark Village to announce that a NASCAR Cup Series race is coming to the track just across the Mississippi River in Illinois, beginning in 2022. Multiple sources confirmed the reports to the Post-Dispatch on Monday.
The Sports Business Journal previously reported, per unnamed sources, that St. Louis was expected to get a Cup race, and that Pocono Raceway in Pennsylvania would lose one.
Told of the news Monday night, retired NASCAR driver Kenny Wallace — a St. Louis native and local racing legend — texted: “This is a really big deal for St. Louis and the surrounding communities. … Our Wallace family grew up racing cars in a ball-and-stick town. Very seldom did we get a lot of love for auto racing. I feel like I’m living a good dream to hear the NASCAR Cup Series is coming to St. Louis. The Cup series is the highest division of motorsports in America.” St. Louis Post Dispatch
September 8, 2021
NASCAR is tentatively set to announce the 2022 Cup Series schedule next week, per sources.
Gateway near St. Louis is expected to get a Cup race, while Pocono Raceway is expected to lose one.
IndyCar attendance at Gateway is already trending downward, and whenever a race promoter adds a Cup race at the same track IndyCar races at, the IndyCar race dies off in 99.99% of the cases. The market simply cannot support tickets sales for two big races and NASCAR almost always wins that battle. The lone exception is the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
NASCAR has a history of going into IndyCar venues and signing on with IndyCar TV broadcasters, with the ultimate goal of putting IndyCar out of business. Of course, they would never admit that, but looking at the history, their actions speak louder than their words.
Any predictions on how many years the IndyCar race will survive at Gateway?
August 21, 2021
Sports Business Journal’s Adam Stern reports that NASCAR has had discussions with World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway to host a Cup Series event in 2022. The 1.25-mile track currently hosts the Camping World Truck Series, where the series kicked off the Playoffs with the opening Round of 10 on Friday night. Let’s hope the Cup race draws a bigger crowd than the Truck race last night (see photo above)
Stern adds that the LA Coliseum is also in consideration for a race. If Gateway adds a Cup race rest assured the Gateway IndyCar race will die off withing 3 years or so.
.@NASCAR has held discussions with @WWTRaceway-Gateway in recent months about potentially awarding the track a ’22 Cup Series race, per sources, though the current status of the talks is unclear.
➖ The @LAColiseum short track idea is another one NASCAR has continued to explore. pic.twitter.com/HWxk4ZB9kR
— Adam Stern (@A_S12) August 21, 2021