Souvenir trailers could return at NASCAR races (Update)

UPDATE Fanatics is looking at changing its NASCAR trackside superstore model to a more tailored approach where it will not only utilize the large superstore tent at every track, according to sources. Fanatics in August 2015 launched the 60,000-square-foot trackside superstore model as part of a 10-year deal with NASCAR, which previously utilized haulers to sell merchandise.

The tent traveled to all 36 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race weekends and was pitched as a more comfortable shopping experience for fans who could now have more of a department-store experience than the beloved yet at-times cumbersome hauler approach. But amid declining merchandise sales linked in part to lower attendance this year, Fanatics is now looking at moving to more of a hybrid approach whereby it will tailor its efforts toward the intricacies of each track, which could include using everything from smaller tents to haulers and new brick-and-mortar stores in tracks.

A key focus for Fanatics is getting more merchandise sold inside the actual track venue itself, as opposed to only having one large tent outside where fans can purchase merchandise. Sports Business Daily

05/08/17 NASCAR fans will soon be able to enjoy the souvenir trailer experience once again.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. fueled the rumor mill following the Geico 500 on Sunday night when he spilled a nugget on Periscope.

"I heard a rumor that the big souvenir tent was going away, and the trailers were coming back," Earnhardt said prior to taking off on a turkey hunting trip. “I don’t know if anyone heard about that. That will be pretty cool."

Two years ago, NASCAR announced a 10-year agreement with Fanatics to take over merchandising for the sport, in an effort to streamline the trackside souvenir experience. While the model featuring a 65,000-square-foot “Trackside Superstore" tent appeared great on paper, the experience left the fans feeling flat. They missed the interaction with the retailers and regular visits by their favorite drivers.

As Earnhardt hinted, if the rumors are correct, some of your favorite drivers — Junior included — could have merchandise trailers back at the track again. With some of the souvenir outlets still based around North Carolina, Charlotte Motor Speedway might be the ideal venue to re-launch trackside trucks.

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