Auto racing: Las Vegas getting second NASCAR race, and Indycar begins in St. Pete

I am spending NCAA Selection Sunday watching auto racing. On today is the Kobalt 400, the only Las Vegas stop of the season for the NASCAR Monster Energy Cup series.

But not for long. It was announced this week that Las Vegas will be getting a second Cup series weekend in the fall, starting in 2018. It will be replacing one of the two New Hampshire races on the schedule. Helping ease the move is that Speedway Motorsports Inc. owns both tracks. The move makes sense, since attendance in Las Vegas is better anyway.

All in all, it’s more great pro sports news for Vegas with the arrival of its new NHL team the Vegas Golden Knights, the announcement UFC will hold four events a year at T-Mobile Arena, and news the Raiders-to-Vegas move is back on track. Now, honestly, I have been of the opinion for a while that Las Vegas doesn’t need the NFL. What they have there now in terms of sports options is more than enough; any city that has an NHL team plus major NASCAR and UFC events on a regular basis would be doing quite well, thanks. Heck, they even have Sevens Rugby every year. But if they really want the NFL there, fine.

The other news is that this is the opening weekend for Indycar and they held their race earlier today in St. Petersburg, Florida, won by Sebastien Bourdais. Of course, whenever I see these races going in places like St. Petersburg, and Las Vegas, not to mention these golf tournaments from Florida, I get all jealous about the weather conditions compared to here, in frozen Canada. (I guess it’s supposed to warm up.) See, this is why I tune in, to get my mind off of the cold.

Also, I read an article in the New York Times about how Indycar was no longer spinning its wheels and how interest is up. You could have fooled me, though, because my own personal interest is down, and the reason is all because I live nowhere near any IndyCar races anymore. Of course, there used to be a race in Edmonton that I would go to regularly, but now it’s just Toronto on the schedule. 

If Indycar is serious about getting fans back in Canada, they need another race here in western Canada where people can go and watch the race live. There have been rumors that may actually happen, though; there has been talk of IndyCar expanding their schedule and rumor is one of those additions could be a street race in Calgary, Alberta.

Well, if that were to happen I’d be interested in going to it, assuming I still live somewhere within driving distance of Calgary, Alberta by then. Right now, the IndyCar race which is the closest proximity to where I live now is the one in Newton, Iowa!!

Not only that, the closest Major League Baseball and NBA teams are in Minneapolis, the closest MLS team is in Vancouver, and the closest NHL team is in Edmonton!! Man, I miss big city life, when these sports were only a subway ride away.