NASCAR tracks lost over $100 million in ticket revenue without fans

NASCAR tracks lost an estimated $150 million to $175 million in combined ticket revenue this past season, according to estimates from industry executives familiar with the sport’s finances.

In 2018, admissions revenue comprised 16% of [International Speedway Corporation’s] revenue, while the bucket that includes media dollars and sponsorship accounted for 75%, and the final roughly 9% came from food and beverage, merchandise or other revenue streams. Those dynamics haven’t changed since, so this means the sport was able to get through 2020 with the majority of its annual revenue still intact because it was able to complete a 36-race season and preserve the media dollars.

NASCAR ultimately was able to host fans at 15 of its 36 races by the time the season ended, but the vast majority were with greatly diminished capacities.

For example, the NASCAR championship race attendance at Phoenix Raceway was capped at 20%, or around 8,400, while Martinsville Speedway in Virginia was only allowed 1,000. The biggest crowds were Bristol Motor Speedway’s All-Star Race and September night race, both of which had more than 20,000 fans – though even that is still only a fraction of capacity at the 160,000-seat venue.

— Sports Business Daily —