Motorsport News

Why an ARCA East Return to Bowman Gray Makes Perfect Sense

2014 ARCA East Bowman Gray pack racing - Ben Rhodes, No. 41 Turner Scott Motorsports Chevrolet (Credit: Getty Images for NASCAR via NASCAR Media)

Since the news broke that NASCAR will now run racing operations at the famed Bowman Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, N.C., many have naturally begged the question of whether the venue is suitable for a date for one of NASCAR’s national series. Based on the limitations of the venue, for both field and crowd size, a return for the ARCA Menards Series East makes the most sense. 

For those unfamiliar with Bowman Gray, it is a perfectly flat quarter-mile short track similar to what the NASCAR Cup Series has run in its Busch Light Clash in Los Angeles for the last three years. For its tendency to create conflict between drivers both on and off the track, it has been affectionately nicknamed ‘The Madhouse.’ 

While its reputation serves as a retraction from it possibly hosting a NASCAR national series event, I would argue, as someone who has been there, that it provides part of the allure.

For the excitement it creates, Bowman Gray has a rabid following all its own and sells out nearly every event of its race season. If a NASCAR touring series returned, the crowd, however small in comparison, would generate just as electric an atmosphere as any other track on the schedule. 

Most people’s mental image of BGS is created from the highlights they have seen of drivers running the wrong way around the track to chase down a competitor or brawling in the pits or some other reality television-style drama.

While these sorts of incidents are not isolated, NASCAR’s control of the track and the ARCA East series provides reasonable assurance that no such incidents that may provide bad PR for the sport will happen in a national series race.

Aside from objecting to a Bowman Gray return based on the reputation that precedes The Madhouse, some have questioned whether the venue could logistically handle a national series event, but recent history should easily put those worries at ease.

BGS has hosted what is now the ARCA Menards Series East as recently as 2015, and the field size for the series has only shrunk since then. Although size may be an issue for any of the top 3 series, no such issue would exist for ARCA East. 

In terms of crowd size, the 17,000-pplus that would pack out BGS would actually be a very nice crowd for an ARCA East event, as the series has had undeniable attendance struggles at certain events. 

Besides the fact that the event is plausible across all levels it would need to work logically, for the purpose…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at …