NASCAR: Opening race moving to new location in 2022?

The Busch Clash has historically been run at Daytona International Speedway. But ahead of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season, it could be run at an entirely different location.

NASCAR has shown this season alone that they are not afraid of changing the schedule by flipping it upside down and creating a whole new one in the process. This year, the Cup Series ran a dirt race for the first time since 1970. Additionally, there were an all-time high of seven road courses on the schedule, plus Nashville Superspeedway.

Even the pre-season schedule featured a new track. The Busch Clash was run on the Daytona International Speedway road course as opposed to the traditional oval where it had been contested since the race began back in 1979.

Between the series starting out with a road course race and then including seven in the regular season, including several at new locations, NASCAR clearly wanted to add innovation into the scheduling process.

With innovation in mind, NASCAR is now looking to run the Busch Clash away from Daytona International Speedway.

According to a report from The Athletic’s Jordan Bianchi, NASCAR is looking to move the clash from its traditional home of Daytona International Speedway to the west coast, running the race at the L.A. Coliseum beginning in 2022.

The move has been rumored for weeks, but it now sounds all but official that the Clash will move away from the venue where it has been contested for the last 43 years.

Ending a tradition of more than four decades is a major surprise in itself, but the sport is simply continuing to try to increase its fanbase in different markets.

Some logistical concerns could very well be argued for this move, as the travel from coast to coast could be costly for any team, especially some of the smaller ones. But it appears that NASCAR wants to rejuvenate a Los Angeles fanbase, something that hasn’t truly been attempted since Riverside International Speedway was on the calendar.

With Auto Club Speedway set for a short track remodel, the L.A. Coliseum would also give drivers and fans alike a preview of a west coast short track race.

The official schedule is expected to be announced in the coming weeks, so while time will tell what other tracks the sport has planned for the 2022 Cup Series season, the L.A. Coliseum seems to be on track to be the latest new host of a Cup Series race.