NASCAR: The best and worst changes to the 2021 schedule

Phoenix Raceway, NASCAR (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Phoenix Raceway, NASCAR (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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Atlanta Motor Speedway, NASCAR (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

Bad change: Atlanta Motor Speedway gets a second date

Date: Sunday, July 11 | Race 21 of 36

If this were a race that used the lower blade and the more potent engine, this race wouldn’t be on the list of bad changes.

I am a fan of Atlanta Motor Speedway. It’s one of the most abrasive surfaces on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule, having not being repaved since its reconfiguration, and the track eats up tires.

However, with the 550 horsepower, high downforce package, the racing is just lackluster, and the track doesn’t deserve a second race. It seems like a follow-the-leader type race with the high downforce, and the drivers don’t seem to slip and slide much because of the lower speeds.

But I can understand why the track is getting a second race. Back in the 1990s and 2000s, it was known for being a slick track at all times and having fantastic finishes, as we saw in the first races of 2000, 2001 and 2005. Perhaps NASCAR is planning for the future with the Generation 7 car set to come in 2022 and potentially bring back the exciting racing that fans haven’t seen there for a few years.

If that is the case, I hope NASCAR has made a fantastic new car meant for the intermediate tracks. With the videos I have seen of the Charlotte Motor Speedway test session, it could be successful come 2022.