It’s been nearly a month since NASCAR came back to racing and other than those who live in the Turn 1 condos at Charlotte Motor Speedway, fans haven’t been able to attend NASCAR races since the COVID-19 pandemic.
As states begin to allow bigger groups being in the same place, the decision now it’s about when fans will be able to attend races. NASCAR announced that fans will be able to attend the June 14th race at Homestead-Miami Speedway and the June 21st race at Talladega Superspeedway but there will be restrictions.
For one thing, a small percentage of the stands will be full and everyone attending will have to be screened, wear a face covering, and maintain social distancing. In addition, fans will not have access to the infield for the time being, which keeps drivers and crew from interacting with fans.
Homestead is set to be the most restrictive of the two tracks in that they will only be inviting 1,000 members of the military and their families from the Homestead Air Reserve Base and U.S. Southern Command in Doral. Talladega, a track that’s slightly a mile bigger than Homestead, will be open to 5,000 fans who had previously bought tickets to the race (supposed to be run in April) and “live within a designated proximity to the track.”
Doing the math, having 1,000 people at Homestead and 5,000 people at Talladega translates to 2.1 and 6.25 percent capacity of the stands at those respective tracks. So there will be plenty of room for everyone to stretch out and be nowhere near each other. At the same time, it’s still 1,000 and 5,000 people being at the same place at the same time, particularly when everyone tends to enter and exit at the same time. The risk is smaller than opening up the track to full capacity but there’s still some level of legit concern. It’s definitely something for NASCAR to study to determine where to go from there.