New Hampshire Motor Speedway Loses Cup Weekend To Las Vegas

It was announced Wednesday that New Hampshire Motor Speedway will lose its September Monster Energy Cup weekend in 2018 (Photo: New Hampshire Motor Speedway)

Las Vegas’ gain on the NASCAR Monster Energy Cup schedule for 2018 proved to be the loss of New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

With rumors swirling for days, Las Vegas Motor Speedway representatives made official Wednesday evening that the track will add a second Monster Energy Cup event to their schedule for the 2018 season. That event will come from New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

New Hampshire Motor Speedway will see its September Cup weekend shift to Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

New Hampshire Motor Speedway has hosted two Cup events annually since 1997. The track hosted its first Cup series event in 1993.

Speedway Motorsports Inc. owns both New Hampshire Motor Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway. SMI purchased New Hampshire Motor Speedway from track founder Bob Bahre in November 2007.

“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,” Speedway Motorsports, Inc. President and Chief Executive Officer Marcus Smith said in a release. “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.

“… Fans and tourism officials in New Hampshire and Kentucky should know that we are still very committed to creating motorsports entertainment in those regions. 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.”


  1. You can cancel my season tickets that I had since the track opened!

  2. darealgoodfella says

    Well, it’s the only track in the northeast and could not fill the place for several years. Attendance and ticket prices are very low.

    This is remarkable. NHMS used to have a waitlist several years long, and $$$$$ ticket prices. Now, you can walk up the day of the race with no concern about getting in, cheap tickets.

    What happened?

  3. wmass01013 says

    SAD DAY but I don’t know how long NASCAR can last with Brian France ruining it
    gets more ridiculous to watch every yr
    nothing more boring than 2 MICHIGAN races and 2 Pocono races in a month where it rains every year
    Bob Bahres dream

  4. wmass01013 says


  5. Sad day in NH today even if I’ve known this would happen for about a week now. It’s not the track it’s the sport. Daytona and the west coast swing tracks sell out. That’s about it. Vegas showed them the money. Eventually you will see Vegas as the last race of the year. Hot as hell still in Sept there. The mods lost a tremendous platform. Sure, there will still be a short track/ mod show there in September’s but the environment will never match a cup weekend.

  6. What Happened you say. Bob Bahre sold to B. Smith that’s what happened.
    It’s been down hill for the Cup, Xfinity, and Truck series ever since.
    Still great Modified racing though.

  7. James Scott says

    It’s sad to me. I have been going to both races for years. I hope NHMS gets creative with other events. NASCAR needs to right the ship real quick. It’s to bad a guy like Humpy Wheeler couldn’t run the show. I think France and Helton need to step back. To me the more they try to be like the NFL the more damage they do. Sadly it’s not a sport any more the common guy could relate to.

  8. Great news for nascar.Great news for speedway motorsports.Once again not great news for northeast race fans.And yes I have noticed the empty seats and yes they are taking out seats to keep up the illusion.If they gave a thought to the fans maybe they could put asses in those seats instead of junking them.It’s been said here to death.We are wasting our breath.

  9. Jason M Bean says

    Don’t think they will get great attendance at Vegas for 2 races. They have less seats there than before, and I think some are empty for 1 race. The big reason for the move is 95% of the people who attend the race in Vegas are “out of towners” so the city was really pushing for the track to get a second date for the tourism.

  10. Bring back Indycar!!! Probably never gonna happen with them going back to Pocono, but hey, you never know!

  11. Bring back Indycar!!! Probably never gonna happen with them going back to Pocono, but hey, you never know! I think a single race at Loudon for the Cup series is a good fit. Hopefully they pack the place for many summers to come.

  12. Personally think NH for Cup and xfinity are kinda boring. So are 1.5 mile D-shape ovals. I’m OK with the date leaving NH. Not OK with it going to LasVegas. Should have been a currently unused track. Road Course or sub 1 Mile track. Lots of great racing in September at the local tracks. I’d rather spend my money at the Speedbowl, Stafford, or Thompson.

  13. I knew this day would come. NASCAR Cup racing has lost 45% of viewer attendance since 2005. While that seems like a long time, losing almost half your fan and revenue base in 11 seasons is a steep decline.

    NASCAR can no longer get a full field of cars, for even it’s premier race.

    In an odd way the downward spiral of Roush Racing over that time – with Carl Edwards being the lone bright spot at times – has tracked almost in lockstep with NASCAR’s downturn as a whole. RCR is now being sucked into that black hole as well.

    While by no means would i say this is the end, I will say that there are similarities with past racing series that have faded from popularity and success – IMSA, Trans-Am and even IndyCar.

    My opinion is it s driven by 2 key factors: 1) Cost, plain and simple. Family of four to go to a race is just out of sight for fans – even with the races not selling out; and 2) The fan base itself, and reduced interest. Those that used to pull for Jeff Gordon or Junior or Mark Martin, etc. now have kid that are not that interested in watching a race for 3 + hours and buying up the merchandise. They’d rather pay Xbox or PlayStation or will just wait for the race highlights to condense the action and they can watch that anytime online or on demand.

    The Boomers and some Gen Xers still go, at least those that can afford to, but the Millennials have very little interest in going.

    The times, they are a changin’

  14. This is what happens when the town doesn’t let the track have lights and won’t let them build a casino. Its the towns fault not NASCAR. The town fought the track on everything and now there moving on to Las Vegas where they can do anything. One race is better than none I guess.

  15. Fast Eddie says

    This day has been coming since the sale of the track. That was the big rumor when the sale first took place; Bruton Smith wanted a second race in Vegas, but NASCAR wouldn’t add a new race to the schedule. It took a while, but unfortunately it has finally happened. Let’s hope there is still a second Modified race next year. Maybe a WMT-PASS-ACT Tripleheader?

  16. yes I agree with most of you. I myself have been there since the track opened. yes wish bob kept it, he built it groomed it and got two races. the night races and lights was more due to the neighboring towns and not loudon. yes we love the modifieds in new England. bring in some non nascar events but wont draw much. lot of loyal fans in new England economy put a knife in that. carry on

  17. Fast Eddie says

    I think this plan was in place from day one of the sale to Bruton Smith. He wanted a second date for Las Vegas and at the time NASCAR didn’t want to add a race to the schedule. Unfortunately it has finally happened. I just hope the WMT keeps their second race at Loudon. Maybe they can keep the WMT-Truck-ACT race alive. Or how about a WMT-PASS-ACT Tripleheader?

  18. Bummer !!!

  19. Let’s face it cup race is a very boring this is just a start to a trend That will continue with other tracks

  20. George R. says

    In response to Tim, Bob got the second date by buying 50% of North Wilkesboro, the other half was owned by Smith, in 1996. in 97 they closed it, with one date going to Texas, & the other to NHMS. Not a whole lot different than SMI moving this date to LV.

  21. I wonder if there will still be a September truck race at NHMS next year. I hope so, but probably not.

  22. Big Mike,
    The truck race is going to Las Vegas too.

  23. darealgoodfella says

    What about an xfinity series event?

  24. nhis been single file boring racing since it opened. we cancelled our season tix yrs. ago. the track should have been banked when they built it. the only good race were the mods. but they stink now, 24-30 cars dose not cut it. was great when they had 40 cars and better driver’s. ho-hum nhis. what nascar should do is invert the field via pts. let’s see the big names start from the back and drive to the front.

  25. Follow the money.

    SMI owns LVMS and NHMS and has three NASCAR ME Cup races between them. NASCAR has always been flexible, allowing track owners to move events from one track to another.
    SMI has a sponsor ready to pay big bucks to sponsor a Cup race, where SMI has had trouble getting sponsorship for Cup races at NHMS.
    Now add in the dwindling hospitality rentals at NHMS and you can see why SMI wants to move the race. Aerial shots during one of the Cup races at NHMS last year showed only a handful of tents in the corporate hospitality area. They parked the pickups used for driver intros in the hospitality area, where in years past that area was wall to wall tents.
    Attendance, tickets sales and concession revenue losses are only a piece of the pie. If they had a good paying event sponsor and better corporate utilization, the decision to move a date to LVMS might not have happened.

    Follow the money.

  26. Just STOP watching or going to these crap events,Support local racing,Brian France and company ruined what years of hard work by his father and grandfather created.STOP the madness.Stop giving them your hard earned dollars.Its all slipping away as we have known racing in the past.The glory days are behind us.Local short tracks will provide good entertainment with out all the big corporate drama.

  27. Well said! Kevin

  28. agreed kevin, local short track racing is the best!

  29. Muddbus461 says

    Boycott the Sunday NH races

  30. Like Jewel says, “Everything changes if you give it enough time”.

  31. For what it’s worth, there were an awful lot of empty seats at Las Vegas this weekend, and I’m not even including the huge brown areas that used to be seats.

  32. James Scott says

    My observation exactly Barry.

  33. darealgoodfella says

    Yeah, saw the empty seats even though they did all they could to not show the stands.

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