Bristol Motor Speedway used to be one of the most coveted tickets in racing. Hell the Bristol night race used to have a waiting list like it was Lambeau Field. People yearned for the day their name came up on the list and they could watch NASCAR’s “wildest” night in person.
Flash forward to 2019 and those days are seemingly behind us. Gone are the days of the waitlist. Gone are the days of paying over face value to watch a race at Bristol. Instead, Bristol will see a massive change for the 2019 season.
Bristol will not be selling tickets in the corners.
In an absolutely insane/bizarre move the short track in northern Tennessee will not be selling tickets in any of the tracks four turns. A call to BMS confirmed just that. When you go to the Bristol ticket site or any secondary site this is what you see:
Visually Bristol is going to look very strange when NASCAR visits in a few short weeks. Fans will only be seated on the straights which is a wild move by the track.
BECAUSE ALL OF THE ACTION USUALLY HAPPENS IN THE CORNERS. No bump and runs happen on the straights. Sometimes people get turned on the straight but majority of the action happens in the corner. And people will say it’s hard to see the cars in the corner and you’re not wrong necessarily but still, there’s action to be viewed there.
Thankfully for the speedway it’s only a half mile track so you can literally see everything happening from basically any seat. It’s a weird move regardless to allow thousands of empty seats to be very, very, visible.
Optically it isn’t going to look great this weekend. People will 100% make this a negative and it’s a bad look for sure. However Bristol isn’t selling 160k tickets anymore, no one is in any sport. Unless you play a Tennessee football game at Bristol, other than that it’s an absurd amount of seats. This isn’t 2005, it’s unrealistic to hold NASCAR to the standards they previously set.
Why the track didn’t limit fans to the lower half of the bowl the entire way around the track is baffling. It would look way better on TV and fans could still see the entire track. Social media would still roast the empty seats but that’s too be expected.
It’s a shame this is happening too. The Bristol night race last season was one of the best races at Bristol in years.
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