Last week, Adam Stern of Sports Business Journal reported that the Racing Team Alliance (RTA), a coalition of NASCAR teams that talks about issues and opportunities in the sport, was looking at the possibility of holding an exhibition event in the off-season.
NASCAR Cup Series teams have struggled to convert their profits into investments in recent years. The sponsorship money has also started to decline, impacting the financial sustainability of the teams.
According to the report, the sports agency, Wasserman, which is already working with the RTA to better understand the media value of upcoming television negotiations, is in the early stages of finding promoters for potential events. The situation could start as early as the 2023 NASCAR offseason.
Joe Gibbs Racing driver and 23XI Racing co-owner Denny Hamlin is one of the few individuals on the grid who can give drivers’ and owners’ opinions on the matter. Ahead of the NASCAR Awards show in Nashville, motorsports journalist Bob Pockrass asked for his thoughts on the possibilities and potential of hosting an exhibition series.
Hamlin believes the idea is viable and won’t interfere with the team’s NASCAR operations. He said:
“Certainly, it could be pulled off for sure, but it won’t affect anything that we do here week in, week out. It’s just more of an opportunity for us to kind of supplement some income.”
“I’ll just sound like some bitter a****** that never won one” – Denny Hamlin on not winning the NASCAR Championship
Denny Hamlin, the driver of #11 Joe Gibbs Racing, is one of the most experienced active drivers who has never won the Cup Championship. Hamlin came close to winning his first title on several occasions but failed to lift the trophy.
Although he has no title, the veteran driver has a runner-up finish and a couple of third-place finishes in the Championship standings. Speaking of his title drought, he said:
“I think Dale Jr. [Earnhardt] covered it perfectly. Should one season, come down to this three-hour window? Listen all of the champions have been worthy, nonetheless, and I’m the last person that should comment on this because I’ve never won one and I’ll just sound like some bitter a****** that never won one.”
Denny Hamlin and his team will be seen in action next year in the Cup Series in the preseason race Busch Light Clash at The Coliseum. The event will start on February 5th before the points-paying races.