Sonoma, Richmond, Chicago to lose 2020 NASCAR dates

Nick DeGroot

Sonoma Raceway has hosted a road course race on the NASCAR calendar every year since 1989, but the 2020 Toyota/Save Mart 350 NASCAR Cup Series race weekend planned for June 12-14 has been called off.

Charlotte Motor Speedway's May 27 race will serve as a substitute on the calendar, another track owned by SMI. NASCAR intends to return to Sonoma in 2021.

“We work all year for this event, so this is a huge disappointment for us, for our fans and our sponsors, but we realize it's part of a larger challenge facing our nation and everyone in the live events business,” said Steve Page, Sonoma Raceway president and general manager. “We are excited that NASCAR is coming back to broadcast television and are ready to support the upcoming events at our Speedway Motorsports tracks. We look forward to NASCAR’s return to Sonoma in 2021.”

Read Also:

The challenges of NASCAR's plan to 'show up and you race'NASCAR to go back racing May 17 at Darlington

Richmond Raceway has also lost its spring race, which was already postponed due to the pandemic.

“As a sport, we continue to be united in the best interests of the safety and well-being of our fans, competitors, stakeholders, and track personnel,” said Richmond President Dennis Bickmeier. “There will be brighter and healthier days ahead in the greater Richmond region when NASCAR returns to Richmond Raceway for the NASCAR Playoff Race Weekend on Sept. 11-12. We look forward to NASCAR’s best getting back on the track at Darlington Raceway on Sunday, May 17 as we launch a new countdown to the return of racing in RVA this fall.”

Additionally, Chicagoland Speedway has lost their lone race weekend on the schedule (June 18-21). The track spent seven years as the playoff opener before being shifted earlier in the season in 2018. The intermediate speedway has had a place on the schedule every year since 2001.

“The difficult decision to realign our race events was a combination of where we fell on the schedule, proximity to NASCAR’s teams and the safety and well-being of our community and larger NASCAR industry,” said Chicagoland President Scott Paddock. “We will miss the roar of the engines at Chicagoland Speedway this season, but we will be rooting for and supporting our NASCAR colleagues at Darlington Raceway as competition returns on Sunday, May 17.”

The current schedule has NASCAR returning May 17 at Darlington Raceway and another event there May 20. These two dates will replace the Richmond and Chicagoland races.