OPINION: NASCAR should race at Homestead-Miami Speedway twice a year

HOMESTEAD, FLORIDA - JUNE 14: Erik Jones, driver of the #20 Toyota Accessories Toyota, stands on the grid prior to the NASCAR Cup Series Dixie Vodka 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on June 14, 2020 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Homestead-Miami Speedway played host for the championship races of NASCAR‘s top three series from 2002-2019, but no longer holds that privilege. For the 2020 season and beyond, NASCAR moved the championship races to Phoenix Raceway, a 1-mile, flat-banked short track. Chase Elliott won the inaugural Cup Series Championship race in Phoenix, beginning a new NASCAR chapter.

Although the Championship Weekend site has been moved, the Homestead-Miami race weekend won’t be eliminated. 2021’s event in South Florida is schedule to take place on February 27th and 28th, just the third race of the season. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series no longer has an event there, but the Xfinity and Cup Series will continue to race.

It’s great that Homestead-Miami Speedway still has an event on the calendar, but it my opinion, the venue should host events twice a season.

A 1.5-mile speedway with banking up to 20 degrees, Homestead-Miami Speedway provides some of the best racing on the calendar. With long straightaways and sharp corners, it makes drivers work extra hard and helps increase the entertainment value. Homestead-Miami Speedway is the only 1.5-mile venue where drivers have to really lift and brake in the corners. The track has multiple racing grooves, the fastest being just inches off the wall. One mistake, and drivers are in the fence.

Not many tracks have it where the top groove is the fastest groove, and it’s why Homestead is one of the most entertaining races of the season.

Additionally, there have been a lot of complaints about many other 1.5-mile race tracks. Many of them have provided long and boring races, hurting ratings for those events. Cars get spaced out quickly after restarts and it makes for poor racing and tough passing. Adding Homestead-Miami Speedway to the calendar twice a year could take the place of one speedways that haven’t provided good racing of late.

NASCAR’s 2021 schedule will see massive changes from previous years. The docket includes seven road-courses, a dirt race, and three completely new venues for the Cup Series. So, NASCAR’s showing that they’re willing to make changes to the schedule to ensure the best racing possible all season.

But, to improve the sport even more, NASCAR should add Homestead-Miami Speedway to the schedule for a second race. Whether it’s in the summer or even in the playoffs, the racing product at Homestead-Miami Speedway is too good to not have a race on the schedule multiple times.