The 2021 NASCAR Xfinity Series schedule will look awfully familiar for those following the changes to the Cup Series slate. On Friday, NASCAR revealed the schedule for its second tier, with all but one of its thirty-three dates being a companion event with the parent series.
“As was the case with the Cup Series, we’re thrilled to have worked with the industry and our broadcast partners to deliver an exciting Xfinity Series schedule for our fans,” NASCAR vice president of racing development Ben Kennedy stated. “We saw phenomenal Xfinity Series racing in 2020, and this schedule allows us to build on that momentum by adding compelling new venues to an already fantastic mix of traditional racetracks.”
By aligning the Xfinity and Cup schedules, new dates include Circuit of the Americas and Nashville Superspeedway. The former is a new addition to NASCAR as a whole, while Nashville previously held Xfinity and Truck races from 2001 to 2011. Second races at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Martinsville Speedway, Darlington Raceway, and Talladega Superspeedway are also added; the last two had introduced additional races during the 2020 season to make up lost ground due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dover International Speedway and Bristol Motor Speedway downscale from two to just one race in 2021. Dover Motorsports, which owns the former track and Nashville, transferred one of the Dover dates to the latter track. Bristol’s spring Cup race has been transformed into a dirt event, though the Xfinity Series will not follow suit.
Three tracks lost their spots on the schedule altogether. Chicagoland Speedway and Kentucky Speedway, which lost their Cup races, will also suffer the same fate at the Xfinity level. Iowa Speedway, one of the few tracks in NASCAR that hosts lower series events but not a Cup date, goes from two dates in 2019 to none (both dates in 2020 were cancelled as a result of COVID-19; Chicagoland also lost its 2020 weekend for the same reason), and the track’s future of hosting major series was placed in question when the IndyCar Series revealed its 2021 schedule without it. Although the track had been suggested by fans over the years as a potential site for a Cup race, factors like poor attendance ultimately played a factor.
“The 2021 NASCAR Xfinity Series schedule was recently released, and unfortunately it does not include a stop at Iowa Speedway,” read a statement from the track. “In addition, while the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series dates for 2021 have yet to be announced, it is not anticipated that the track will host a race in that series either. This change is by no means a reflection of our fans’ support. We appreciate your patience and dedication.”
Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, which has welcomed the Xfinity Series since 2013, makes its return to the schedule after skipping 2020 due to the pandemic. The track is the lone standalone event for the series, with neither the Cup and Truck Series also racing there. Road America, having hosted Xfinity races since 2010, has become a companion date with the premier series on the Fourth of July weekend; another road course race on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway infield, introduced in 2020, also makes the transition from standalone to Cup support.
|1||Daytona International Speedway||13 February|
|2||Homestead-Miami Speedway||20 February|
|3||Auto Club Speedway||27 February|
|4||Las Vegas Motor Speedway||6 March|
|5||Phoenix Raceway||13 March|
|6||Atlanta Motor Speedway||20 March|
|7||Martinsville Speedway||9 April|
|8||Talladega Superspeedway||24 April|
|9||Darlington Raceway||8 May|
|10||Dover International Speedway||15 May|
|11||Circuit of the Americas||22 May|
|12||Charlotte Motor Speedway||29 May|
|13||Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course||5 June|
|14||Texas Motor Speedway||12 June|
|15||Nashville Superspeedway||19 June|
|16||Pocono Raceway||27 June|
|17||Road America||3 July|
|18||Atlanta Motor Speedway||10 July|
|19||New Hampshire Motor Speedway||17 July|
|20||Watkins Glen International||7 August|
|21||Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course||14 August|
|22||Michigan International Speedway||21 August|
|23||Daytona International Speedway||27 August|
|24||Darlington Raceway||4 September|
|25||Richmond Raceway||11 September|
|26||Bristol Motor Speedway (regular season finale)||17 September|
|27||Las Vegas Motor Speedway||25 September|
|28||Talladega Superspeedway||2 October|
|29||Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval (Round of 12 elimination)||9 October|
|30||Texas Motor Speedway||16 October|
|31||Kansas Speedway||23 October|
|32||Martinsville Speedway (Round of 8 elimination)||30 October|
|33||Phoenix Raceway||6 November|