NASCAR's 2020 finale moves to Phoenix as part of schedule overhaul

Image by LaBounty/LAT

NASCAR's 2020 finale moves to Phoenix as part of schedule overhaul


NASCAR's 2020 finale moves to Phoenix as part of schedule overhaul


The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule has been reshuffled significantly for the 2020 season, culminating with ISM Raceway replacing Homestead-Miami as host of the finale.

After the Daytona 500 opens the season on Feb. 16, the changes begin immediately when the series heads directly to the west coast for Las Vegas, Fontana, and ISM. Atlanta has been pushed to the fifth race of the season and will now be followed by Homestead.

Further into the schedule, Martinsville will now hold its first race in May on Mother’s Day weekend, an event that will run at prime time on Saturday night. Pocono Raceway is going to host both of its Cup Series races in a single weekend in June.

Indianapolis has been moved earlier into the summer, and will host the Brickyard 400 on the July 4th weekend. The second Daytona race, which had previously been on that weekend, is now the cutoff race to the playoffs.

“Quite fittingly, the birthplace of NASCAR will host the bookend races to the 2020 regular season,” said NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer Steve O’Donnell. “Racing in Daytona – particularly in the summer under the lights – never fails in delivering intense and unpredictable action. There’s no question this venue will create some incredible drama as drivers make one last push for a playoff spot.”

Darlington Raceway will be the first race of the postseason in its usual Labor Day weekend spot. Bristol is the first elimination race, moving to the third spot in the playoffs. But the biggest change is the one that will have the champion crowed in Phoenix. The season will also end a week earlier on Sunday, Nov. 8.

“The fans and the industry as a whole have been vocal about the desire for sweeping changes to the schedule, and the 2020 slate is a reflection of our efforts to execute against that feedback,” said O’Donnell. “These changes are a result of unprecedented consensus-building with our racetracks and broadcast partners; something we look to continue into 2021 and beyond.”

Pocono will run its two races as a double-header in June. Image by Whitton/LAT

2020 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule

Sunday, Feb. 16: Daytona 500

Sunday, Feb. 23: Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Sunday, March 1: Auto Club Speedway

Sunday, March 8: ISM Raceway

Sunday, March 15: Atlanta Motor Speedway

Sunday, March 22: Homestead-Miami Speedway

Sunday, March 29: Texas Motor Speedway

Sunday, April 5: Bristol Motor Speedway

Sunday, April 19: Richmond Raceway

Sunday, April 26: Talladega Superspeedway

Sunday, May 3: Dover International Speedway

Saturday, May 9: Martinsville Speedway

Saturday, May 16: All-Star Race

Sunday, May 24: Charlotte Motor Speedway

Sunday, May 31: Kansas Speedway

Sunday, June 7: Michigan International Speedway

Sunday, June 14: Sonoma Raceway

Sunday, June 21: Chicagoland Speedway

Saturday, June 27: Pocono Raceway

Sunday, June 28: Pocono Raceway

Sunday, July 5: Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Saturday, July 11: Kentucky Speedway

Sunday, July 19: New Hampshire Motor Speedway

Sunday, Aug. 9: Michigan International Speedway

Sunday, Aug. 16: Watkins Glen International

Sunday, Aug. 23: Dover International Speedway

Saturday, Aug. 29: Daytona International Speedway


Sunday, Sept. 6: Darlington Raceway

Saturday, Sept. 12: Richmond Raceway

Saturday, Sept. 19: Bristol Motor Speedway

Sunday, Sept. 27: Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Sunday, Oct. 4: Talladega Superspeedway

Sunday, Oct. 11: Charlotte Motor Speedway

Sunday, Oct. 18: Kansas Speedway

Sunday, Oct. 25: Texas Motor Speedway

Sunday, Nov. 1: Martinsville Speedway

Sunday, Nov. 8: ISM Raceway

Specific race times and television networks will be announced at a later date.