Kentucky is losing fall
XFinity race next year
September race will move to Las Vegas
to create a NASCAR triple header
SPARTA, Ky. (September 2017) – Next year, the September XFinity race at the Kentucky Speedway will move to Las Vegas.
Las Vegas Motor Speedway will hold a pair of aces next year as the 1.5-mile superspeedway doubles down with a second Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race for the 2018 season and beyond.
The speedway made the announcement at a joint news conference with the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority at Cashman Center on March 8, just two days before the green flag dropped on its 2017 NASCAR weekend.
LVMS will play host to the new Monster Energy Cup race beginning in fall 2018 in addition to its customary March NASCAR weekend.
Kentucky Speedway photo
Elliott Sadler celebrates his 2016 victory at the September XFinity Series race at the Kentucky Speedway.
LVMS also will welcome a second NASCAR XFinity Series race beginning in fall 2018 and an additional NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race beginning in spring 2018, meaning both of the speedway’s NASCAR weekends will include races from each of NASCAR’s top three series – the Camping World Truck Series, XFinity Series and Monster Energy Cup Series.
Last year’s March race attracted more than 115,000 fans, with more than 96,000 coming from out-of-town, and generated nearly $140 million in economic impact.
The September triple-header weekend will include the relocation of the NASCAR XFinity Series race that currently takes place at Kentucky Speedway in September.
Kentucky Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway are both owned by Speedway Motorsports Inc.
Kentucky Speedway General Manager Mark Simendinger said he fully expects Las Vegas to be the place for NASCAR fans to be in the fall, just as it is in the spring.
“We accomplished great things with the NASCAR XFinity Series race in September, and now it will continue to grow during this exciting new weekend,” said Simendinger. “We were the last Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series track to hold a XFinity Series race on a non-Cup weekend. It makes sense to combine all three NASCAR national touring series as this big weekend in Las Vegas is launched.”
This year, the NASCAR XFinity Series VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 will take place on Saturday, Sept. 23, at Kentucky Speedway. It is the second year the city has sponsored the fall race.
“Myrtle Beach is a great partner,” Simendinger said. “We look forward to another exciting race weekend with them as the title sponsor in 2017 and will work together to find more creative ways to deliver their message of fun in the sun starting in 2018.”
Las Vegas Motor Speedway will become the first facility on the NASCAR schedule to play host to two annual event weekends with all three national touring series. Official race dates will be announced later by NASCAR as part of the full 2018 schedules.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for Speedway Motorsports and Las Vegas Motor Speedway to create a NASCAR spectacle worthy of the greatest racing in the world and the Entertainment Capital of the World,” said Speedway Motorsports Inc. President and Chief Executive Officer Marcus Smith. “It’s taken a tremendous amount of work to make this happen, and we are very thankful to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and NASCAR for their support in our endeavor to create a triple-header NASCAR weekend in such a world-class destination.”
In 2018, Speedway Motorsports will re-align the September Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races from New Hampshire Motor Speedway in addition to the September NASCAR XFINITY Series race from Kentucky Speedway to create the two triple-header weekends in Las Vegas.
“Fans and tourism officials in New Hampshire and Kentucky should know that we are still very committed to creating motorsports entertainment in those regions,” Smith said. “We will work hard to make sure the July NASCAR race weekends that we will continue to host in New Hampshire and Kentucky are bigger and better than ever before for our fans, sponsors and stakeholders.”
LVMS first hosted a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race in 1996, added a NASCAR XFINITY Series race in 1997 and will host its 20th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event, the Kobalt 400, this Sunday.
The first race held at the 1.5-mile oval was the Indy Racing League’s Las Vegas 500K in 1996.
“We’re honored that NASCAR has entrusted us with a second NASCAR weekend,” LVMS President Chris Powell said. “We’ve pursued a second NASCAR premier-series race weekend for quite some time, so this news is monumental for everyone at Las Vegas Motor Speedway as well as everyone in our wonderful city.”
“Las Vegas and Las Vegas Motor Speedway have become great destinations for NASCAR fans,” NASCAR Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Development Officer Steve O’Donnell said. “The experience is unique to any other in our sport. We look forward to having NASCAR racing there for two race weekends in 2018.”
The addition of a second NASCAR weekend in Las Vegas will be a big boost for Southern Nevada and the news was welcomed by the Las Vegas Convention and Visitor’s Authority Board of Directors.
“Over the years, Las Vegas has become a major sports city as a popular destination for a variety of championship and professional sports events, and today we are proud to add a second NASCAR Cup race to that roster,” said Rossi Ralenkotter, president and CEO of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. “Las Vegas, NASCAR and Las Vegas Motor Speedway have developed a strong and successful partnership, and we are certain this second race will prove to be another great success.”
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