The two-time Cup Series champion met with media members at Atlanta Motor Speedway on July 8 and he faced questions about the possibility of NASCAR taking its best drivers to Europe, South America, the Middle East, or another market. Busch responded by indicating that NASCAR has proved it can pull these events off.
“I feel like there’s definitely the potential for that — whether it’s North America, South America, even a different continent,” Busch said at Atlanta Motor Speedway. “I think there’s some opportunities that are out there, so it will be interesting to see where we land with that.
“I think last week kind of showcased that you can do a street event. And we’ve also kind of proven the stadium aspect, as well, with the [Los Angeles] Coliseum. I think that opens up a huge playbook.”
NASCAR Has Expressed Confidence in Global Events
Busch has expressed the opinion that there is potential for an international race. NASCAR has also made it clear that there is confidence in the ability to grow the sport globally.
NASCAR Chief Operating Officer Steve O’Donnell expressed this belief during a press conference in Chicago. He explained that he and SVP of Racing Development and Strategy Ben Kennedy have heard from interested parties around the world regarding a potential Cup Series race.
When will this happen? O’Donnell does not yet have that answer. He stated that NASCAR still has to do what’s right for its fans. Though he does know that they can pull off an event in another country, whether it’s on the streets or in a unique venue.
“I’m not going to put a timetable on it, but I think we’re all confident at NASCAR that we could take the Cup Series anywhere we want, and we do that with the industry, and I think — I don’t think, I know the race we put on today would sell and would be embraced globally for sure,” O’Donnell said on July 2.
Several Areas Remain Options for NASCAR
NASCAR has the goal of taking its top series to new audiences and markets, but where will it head next? Is Canada on tap? What about a potential return to Japan? As it turns out, there are many options on the table.
According to the Adam Stern of the Sports Business Journal, Ben Kennedy has been taking site visits for potential upcoming races. Some are in the Continental United States, such as Denver, Seattle, and New York City. Others are in international markets. This list includes Mexico, Canada, and the Middle East.
Kennedy told SBJ that some of these sites could be on future schedules while others could not. He is not limiting discussions to the 2024 season. Kennedy said that there are a number of things in the pipeline for 2025 and 2026. NASCAR is also examining 2027 for some potential moves.