NASCAR Champion’s Week is back in Nashville this year after going virtual last year due to the pandemic.
From Nov. 30 to Dec. 2, Champion’s Week will take over Music City Center in downtown Nashville. Drivers, industry-leading lights and celebrities will gather there to help crown the NASCAR Cup Series champion. The Xfinity Series and the Camping World Truck Series champions will also be crowned there, per NASCAR.com.
The tradition of a formal postseason crowning of the victor goes all the way back to 1981. At that time, Champion’s Week took place in New York City. In 2009, it moved to Las Vegas. And in 2019, it relocated to Nashville. That was the last time Champion’s Week was held in person.
NASCAR Hearts Nashville
NASCAR made its long-overdue return to the Nashville Superspeedway this year. And once the racing started back up there, NASCAR driver Kyle Larson landed the Cup win in a national series tripleheader weekend.
The track had been vacant since NASCAR driver Carl Edwards, who has since retired, won an Xfinity Series race there on July 23, 2011. It then underwent a multimillion-dollar transformation overseen by new Nashville Superspeedway president Erik Moses, with new developments and upgrades to bring the track up to date and to prepare it for packed crowds.
But 2019 wasn’t NASCAR’s first time in Nashville. From 1958 to 1984, Fairgrounds Speedway in Music City played host to 42 Cup Series races. It even hosted them twice a year from 1973 to 1984.
Meanwhile, NASCAR is cooperating with local and state government and health officials to guarantee a safe event. The organization says it follows Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as well as World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines when it comes to COVID-19.
Good News for Nashville
For their part, Nashville officials welcomed NASCAR back with open arms. Butch Spyridon, president and CEO of Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp, told the Tennessean that Nashville is eager to make up for lost time due to the pandemic.
“The return of NASCAR Champion’s Week is more great news for racing fans and our city,” Spyridon said. “We missed them last year and look forward to making up for lost time. This truly speaks highly of our town that programs like NASCAR want to return.”
In 2019, Kyle Busch won his second NASCAR Cup Series championship. This year, Kyle Larson is the present NASCAR Cup Series points leader. He won the inaugural Ally 400 at Nashville Superspeedway this June.
Coming in second by points is Martin Truex Jr., and then Alex Bowman, Busch and Chase Elliott.