NASCAR 2022 Season Kicking Off With Major Schedule Shakeup, First Race at LA Memorial Coliseum

by Chris Haney
nascar-2022-season-kicking-off-major-schedule-shakeup-first-race-la-memorial-coliseum

On Tuesday night, NASCAR officials confirmed that its annual pre-season exhibition “The Clash” will be held on a special track inside of Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

The unique event will be a first for NASCAR and the Coliseum. Typically, the yearly race is held at Daytona International Speedway and has been since 1979. The invite-only race is a way to welcome back the sport and garner interest in the season-opening Daytona 500 a week later. However, this is a huge change for NASCAR that will put the spotlight on the stock cars as they head to Hollywood.

Officials announced that the race’s date will have a slight change as well. “The Clash at the Coliseum” will be held on Feb. 6, which is two weeks before the Daytona 500 and one week before the Super Bowl. A temporary quarter-mile track will be installed inside the historic stadium. The Coliseum is most well-known as a football stadium that is the longtime home of the University of Southern California Trojans. It seats 77,500 fans and should make for quite the spectacle as NASCAR competes there for the first time ever.

Ben Kennedy, NASCAR senior vice president of strategy and innovation, spoke about the unique race yesterday.

“Los Angeles is synonymous with major sports and entertainment events. So we seized an innovative opportunity to showcase NASCAR at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum,” Kennedy explained. “We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to take center stage in this market as we get our 2022 season underway.”

In addition, officials confirmed that drivers will use the Next Gen cars that will debut next season. “The Clash at the Coliseum” tickets will go on sale this Thursday. Ticket prices are $65 per adult and $10 for kids that are 12 years old and younger.

NASCAR Will Add to the Coliseum’s Long and Storied Sports History

Tuesday’s announcement also confirms numerous reports from last week. The reports suggested that NASCAR was close to finalizing a deal to move “The Clash” to the Coliseum. Now, the sport will become part of the famous stadium’s storied history.

Since 1923, the L.A. Memorial Coliseum has played host to the USC Trojans college football team. But that’s not the only football team that called the stadium home. From 1946 to 1979, the NFL’s Los Angeles Rams also shared the stadium. Furthermore, the Coliseum hosted Super Bowls I and VII during the early days of the league. It also hosted another sport’s championship when three games of the 1959 World Series were played there.

Additionally, the Memorial Coliseum hosted the 1932 and 1984 Summer Olympics. Once again it will have the honor during the 2028 Summer Olympics. Following the 2028 international sporting event, the L.A. Coliseum will be the first stadium to host the Olympic games three times.

“The Greatest Stadium in the World” is also a living memorial. It honors those that served our country during World War I. On July 27, 1984, before the ’84 Olympics opening ceremony, the Coliseum was officially declared a National Historic Landmark. NASCAR will look to add to its illustrious history in February 2022.

Outsider.com