Two tracks altering distances

Updated: January 13, 2010, 6:22 PM ET
By David Newton |

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Phoenix International Raceway is lengthening the distance of its first race, and Auto Club Speedway in California is shortening its second.

Newton: Win one, lose one

Many race fans and many of us who cover the sport have been screaming for shorter races to make the Sprint Cup series more interesting and exciting. The folks in California apparently listened, announcing on Wednesday they will shorten the Oct. 10 race from 500 to 400 miles. The folks at Phoenix went the other direction. Blog

PIR announced Wednesday that its April 10 race will add 63 laps, or 100 kilometers; it is named the Subway Fresh Fit 600. The longest race is the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Auto Club Speedway announced it will shorten its Oct. 10 race from 500 miles to 400.

PIR president Bryan Sperber, in a news release, said the change was made in part to introduce new strategy, from pit stops to fuel cycles.

Auto Club Speedway president Gillian Zucker said the change was made at her track after talks with NASCAR "in regard to making Auto Club Speedway the most competitive track possible."

The complaint over the years has been that the California race is too long and boring.

David Newton covers NASCAR for He can be reached at

David Newton | email

ESPN Carolina Panthers reporter