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Fri, Nov 26, 2021 08:53 PM PT




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2021 NASCAR Cup Series

The 2021 NASCAR Cup Series was the 73rd season for NASCAR professional stock car racing in the United States and the 50th season for the modern era Cup Series. The season started at Daytona International Speedway with the Busch Clash, where it was the first year that the non-points event was run on the track's road course layout instead of the oval. That race was followed by the Bluegreen Vacations Duel qualifying races, and the 63rd running of the Daytona 500, the first points race of the season. The regular season also ended at Daytona with the 2021 Coke Zero Sugar 400 on August 28, where Kyle Larson won the Regular Season Championship. Following the 2021 Xfinity 500 at Martinsville Speedway on October 31, Chevrolet claimed its 40th Manufacturer's Championship and its first since 2015. The NASCAR playoffs ended with the Season Finale 500 at Phoenix Raceway on November 7 with Larson earning his first Cup Series championship after a 10-win season.This was the first season since 2000 without seven-time series champion Jimmie Johnson, who was competing part-time in IMSA and IndyCar in 2021, and Clint Bowyer, who joined the NASCAR on Fox booth as a color commentator, as well as both Germain Racing and Leavine Family Racing, which closed down after the 2020 season. This was also the first season for 23XI Racing, co-owned by Joe Gibbs Racing Cup Series driver Denny Hamlin and basketball legend Michael Jordan, and Trackhouse Racing Team, co-owned by former NASCAR and current sports car racing driver Justin Marks and musician Pitbull. It is also the last season for Chip Ganassi Racing, as Trackhouse purchased the entirety of CGR's NASCAR team for 2022, StarCom Racing, as they ceased operations after 2021, Team Penske crew chief Todd Gordon, who announced his retirement from crew chiefing following the 2021 season, and the Cup Series Generation 6 car, which will be replaced with the Next Gen car starting in 2022; by extension, it was also the final season for the Car of Tomorrow chassis, as the Next Gen car will have a completely-new chassis design. In addition, this was the final season to have races covered by NBCSN, which will shut down by the end of the year and have its coverage of NASCAR and all other sporting events taken over by USA Network.

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2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series

The 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series will be the 41st season of the NASCAR Xfinity Series, a stock car racing series sanctioned by NASCAR in the United States. The season will kick off with the Beef. It's What's for Dinner. 300 on February 19 at Daytona International Speedway and will end with the playoff finale on November 5 at Phoenix Raceway. This season will mark the first time in over 20 years to feature two African-American drivers racing against each other in a NASCAR national series race, as Jesse Iwuji will run full-time and Rajah Caruth will run part-time in the series in 2022. The last time this happened was when Willy T. Ribbs and Bill Lester competed together in five races in the Truck Series in 2001. Also, the Xfinity Series logo will change from red to purple in 2022.

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Criticism of NASCAR

The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) is the sanctioning body for the NASCAR Cup Series, the Xfinity Series and the Camping World Truck Series. NASCAR also administers a number of regional racing series, including the Whelen Modified Tour, and the Whelen All-American Series, as well as international series in Canada, Mexico, and Europe. Similar to other professional motor racing leagues and sanctioning bodies, NASCAR has been a target of criticism on a variety of issues. Some critics note the significant differences between present day NASCAR vehicles and true "stock cars". Another topic of debate has been NASCAR's move to larger markets; in 1997, NASCAR added the California and Texas Motor Speedway, respectively located in the metro areas of Los Angeles and Dallas. This caused NASCAR to move away from traditional tracks such as Rockingham, which has led to some fans feeling that NASCAR abandoned its core market.Others cite the dominance of the France family (and Brian France in particular) in NASCAR's business structure, policies, and decision making. Recently, the increased number of Cup drivers competing consistently in the Xfinity Series races has been frequently debated. NASCAR has been challenged on the types and frequency of caution flags, with some critics suggesting the outcome of races is being manipulated, and that the intention is not safety, as NASCAR claims, but closer racing. Since its peak in 2005, NASCAR has seen a gradual decline, with its TV viewership reaching record lows in 2018 and race day attendance suffering to record lows as well. Reasons cited for its decline include the aforementioned track changes, the introduction of the Car of Tomorrow which both drivers and fans alike criticized, the constant tinkering of the rules of its championship and the racing itself, the change in its race day experience, the perceived decline in the quality of its racing, and the retirement of its past stars, such as Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr, Tony Stewart, Carl Edwards, and others.Another general area of criticism, not only of NASCAR, but other motorsports as well, includes questions about fuel consumption, emissions, engine noise levels, and pollution, and the use of lead additives in the gasoline.

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NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series is a pickup truck racing series owned and operated by the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing, and is the only series in NASCAR to race modified-production pickup trucks. The series is one of three national divisions of NASCAR, ranking as the third tier behind the second-tier NASCAR Xfinity Series and the top level NASCAR Cup Series. Camping World has been the title sponsor since 2009; it replaced Craftsman, which served in that role from 1996 through 2008.The series was previously called the NASCAR SuperTruck Series in 1995, the Craftsman Truck Series from 1996 through 2008, the Camping World Truck Series from 2009 through 2018, the Gander Outdoors Truck Series in 2019, and the Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series in 2020. The series name reverted to Camping World Truck Series starting in 2021.

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NASCAR Cup Series

The NASCAR Cup Series is the top racing series of the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR). The series began in 1949 as the Strictly Stock Division, and from 1950 to 1970 it was known as the Grand National Division. In 1971, when the series began leasing its naming rights to the R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, it was referred to as the NASCAR Winston Cup Series (1971–2003). A similar deal was made with Nextel in 2003, and it became the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series (2004–2007). Sprint acquired Nextel in 2005, and in 2008 the series was renamed the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (2008–2016). In December 2016, it was announced that Monster Energy would become the new title sponsor and the series was renamed the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (2017–2019). In 2019, NASCAR rejected Monster's offer to extend the current naming rights deal beyond the end of the season. NASCAR subsequently announced its move to a new tiered sponsorship model beginning with the 2020 season similar to other US based professional sports leagues, where it was simply known as the NASCAR Cup Series, with the sponsors of the series being called Premier Partners. The four Premier Partners are Busch Beer, Coca-Cola, GEICO, and Xfinity.The championship is determined by a points system, with points being awarded according to finish placement and number of laps led. The season is divided into two segments.

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