The 2019 Monster Energy Cup Series season is finally in high gear, but its also not without its problems. Unfortunately for the sport that continues to suffer from fans leaving, sagging ratings and countless changes, they announced yet another one on their website today and it has to do with practices.
With that being said, NASCAR.com is reporting that Fox Sports 1 will no longer broadcast practices before 3PM . Fans can still watch the live stream of the practices on NASCAR.com, but its not a good sign for a sport that has been in massive decline over the past couple of years.
In fact, it turns NASCAR more and more into this niche sport that can’t draw the big crowds it used to. Interestingly enough however, if NASCAR and Fox Sports 1 would just cut time from the fluff that didn’t matter and focus on the stuff that did, it would pay big dividends for the sport.
For example, why not cut the hour and half pre race coverage NASCAR has every week? Not only does it become insanely boring after the first 30 minutes or so, but it is also serves as an extremely poor introduction for new fans coming into the sport.
Instead of spending so much time on the pre race predictions and talk of what’s happening in the sport, why not leave that to Race Hub and focus on the racing? If nothing else, it will allow new fans to instantly see what all the hubbub is about without all the waiting and may allow for more time to be devoted to practices.
In the end, its a big blow to anyone that wants to see the first storylines of the weekend unfold, but it’s not like there’s really a justification for them being on in the first place. They probably draw next to nothing, don’t have the best of sponsors for that time period and the action usually mundane compared to the actual race.
In all honesty however, that’s what a lot of the longtime fans love to watch and Fox Sports 1 making it harder to do so is just depressing. Again, its showing that the sport is becoming more and more of a niche and can’t justify its own television times or at least its extra layers.
According to Yahoo Sports.com, ” Fox isn’t the first network to push NASCAR practices to an online streaming service in lieu of cable television. NBC has put NASCAR practices and qualifying sessions on its streaming app over the last couple seasons. NBC, however, has one cable sports channel. Fox has two. “