Jimmie Johnson's local appeal couldn't save Fontana's Chase race. (LAT photo)
Auto Club Speedway confirmed Tuesday that it will host just one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekend, March 25-27, beginning in 2011. The management of the Fontana, Calif., speedway says it "continues to work in earnest to add events to the Speedway's race schedule in an effort to diversify on-track activity" for next year.
“Moving our Auto Club 500 event from February to March provides us the opportunity to show off the area's beautiful ‘Chamber of Commerce' weather,” said Auto Club Speedway President Gillian Zucker. “Our staff and the thousands of Southern California loyal race fans look forward to the return of NASCAR's most talented drivers in both the Sprint Cup Series and the Nationwide Series as well as Southern California's own four-time Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson.
“We remain committed to providing unforgettable experiences to our loyal fans and we will continue to look at ways to diversify our schedule, working diligently to add exciting events for 2011 and beyond,” added Zucker.
The former California Speedway opened in 1997 with both CART Champ Car and NASCAR events, and later switched from CART to the Indy Racing League for Indy car races. However, the IRL race was dropped after 2005 due to poor attendance.