Denny Hamlin is an advocate [of shorter races], comparing the length of Thursday night’s race to an NBA or NFL game.
“You’ve got to advance with the times,” Hamlin said. “I think keeping people’s attention span for three hours is a good thing. It’s a very good thing. These cars are different now than what they used to be. It used to be a battle of machine, you’re going to wear out your tires and your brakes and whatnot. They just don’t wear out anymore, so essentially it just becomes a long race after that.
“I certainly like the change, and on a weeknight time slot that we have, it’s got to be tightened up anyway, so I think this was a good taste of it, and they’ll gather the data and figure out what’s best for the future.”
— Autoweek —
AND: Brad Keselowski talked about shorter races and limited track time after Thursdays’ race:
YOU’VE TALKED ABOUT MIDWEEK RACES FOR SOME TIME. DO YOU THINK THIS EXPERIENCE CAN LAY A BLUEPRINT FOR NASCAR AND HOW THEY SCHEDULE FROM NOW?
Keselowski: “Oh yeah, I think absolutely. NASCAR, in my opinion, has hit gold with this format. The limited practice, show up and race, and the time window that benefits both the east and west coast. No qualifying. Inversion from the week before is really good because it mixes the field up and creates some good storylines there. I think it’s fair. It’s compelling and it’s at a time where, quite frankly, the sports world, even if it wasn’t for COVID, midweek races in the summer, when you’re generally not having a lot of competition, is in a time period where everybody is hungry for content. I think they’ve got gold here. COVID or not, I hope we keep this for years to come. I think this is a great little format that’s good for the sport and good for the fans and good for everybody all around, so kudos to them.”
WHEN YOU SAY KEEP THE FORMAT DO YOU MEAN KEEP LIMITED PRACTICE AND NO QUALIFYING AS OPPOSED TO DOING A TRADITIONAL RACE WEEKEND?
Keselowski: “Yeah, absolutely. We don’t need a whole bunch of practice and qualifying for midweek races. I think maybe one short practice and that’s about it. I would be really cool with that and I think it would be great for our sport.”
— Ford Performance —