They (NASCAR & International Speedway Corporation) continue to say they love the later Daytona 500 date. They forgot to ask this fan his opinion - as though they care. The possibility of the NFL extending its season is still cited as the reason for the switch in cooperation with FOX Sports.
Later date for Daytona 500 may be here to stay
By Dinah Voyles Pulver
Daytona Beach News-Journal
February 12, 2013
Fans and drivers are eagerly awaiting the end of the long winter break between the Sprint Cup championship and the season-opening Daytona 500, but officials with NASCAR and Daytona International Speedway say holding the 500 a week later is working out well and likely will continue for the foreseeable future.
Teams, drivers and fans have had a 13-week break in racing action since Brad Keselowski claimed the Sprint Cup championship in Homestead on Nov. 18.
NASCAR and the Speedway decided in 2011 to move the 500 back a week, extending the off-season by a week and closing an open race weekend in March, to condense the season a little at the request of its broadcast partner Fox Sports.
"I think it's worked well," Steve O'Donnell, NASCAR's senior vice president for racing operations, said Monday.
"We look at it on a year-by-year basis, but so far so good," O'Donnell said, "despite the rain we had last year, which was unfortunate."
Last year's 500, the first at the later date, was the first in history to be delayed for a day because of weather.
On Monday, O'Donnell said NASCAR wants to get through this year "and kind of have a better gauge, hopefully with good weather."
Moving the 500 later in February also avoided any potential conflicts with the National Football League, which had discussed extending its season.
O'Donnell said he's read the NFL is still considering adding an additional playoff game. (Gee... why don't you just call 'em up and ask like Bill France Sr. or Junior would have done, duh - df)
"Obviously that may affect where we used to run," he said. "We always look at what else may be going on from an entertainment standpoint."
After this season, if "all the indicators are still positive," O'Donnell said, he thinks they'll leave the later race date in place.
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
updated by @dave-fulton: 12/05/16 04:04:08PM