Could the numbers on the cars be moving in 2022?

Could NASCAR be inching closer to completely altering where the numbers lie on automobiles?

While sponsors, makers and chauffeurs have actually all turned through NASCAR throughout Cup Series history, among the couple of constants has actually been where numbers lie. No matter the make, design or color, automobiles have actually constantly had numbers listed below the motorist and traveler side window and on the roofing.

That might be altering quickly. According to the Sports Organization Journal, NASCAR is progressively talking about moving the numbers on the sides of the automobiles as early as next season when the brand-new Cup Series cars and truck is set to launching.

The relocation isn’t completely unanticipated. NASCAR telegraphed the concept throughout the All-Star Race in the summer season of 2020 when it explored with pressing the side numbers back towards the rear wheels. As you can picture, that appearance took some getting utilized to.

BRISTOL, TENNESSEE - JULY 15: Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M's Toyota, races Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Discount Tire Ford, during the NASCAR Cup Series All-Star Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on July 15, 2020 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Do you like this cars and truck number positioning? (Picture by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

The main public inspiration for moving the numbers on the sides of the automobiles is sponsor-driven. The modification has actually been described by keeping in mind that sponsors have more realty to flaunt their brand names and logo designs with the numbers in a various area.

There’s no factor to question the extra area. As you can see because photo above, the Discount Rate Tire and M&Ms logo designs are much more in your face. However you might currently inform those business were sponsoring those automobiles without increased side logo design positioning. And would primary sponsors like those be willing to pay teams more money for those sponsorships with the numbers in a different position?

Martin Truex Jr (19) and Joey Logano (22) race through Turn 4 during a NASCAR Cup Series auto race at Phoenix Raceway, Sunday, March 14, 2021, in Avondale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ralph Freso)

This is what the normal number placement looks like. (AP Photo/Ralph Freso)

NASCAR needs to be transparent

The social media reaction against moving the numbers has been loud. That’s understandable; basketball fans would be furious if the NBA said that it was moving the numbers on the front and backs of player jerseys to give jersey sponsors more room to advertise. Changing things that have always worked well and that everyone is used to isn’t an easy sell.

And NASCAR needs to realize the difficulty of that sell to its fans if it goes through with this number move.

Social media reaction isn’t always the best barometer of public opinion. Those who speak the loudest tend to be heard the most. And the majority of Americans are not on Twitter or commenting frequently on Facebook or Instagram. It’s possible that the people who have expressed public disdain for the number move are in the minority.

If they aren’t, then NASCAR is playing with fire. Major auto racing’s continued struggle for national relevance doesn’t leave it much wiggle room with the fans that are still watching. As television audiences have eroded over the last decade, NASCAR shouldn’t be risking infuriating a majority of the people who continue to tune in and pay attention on a regular basis.

That’s why this change should be accompanied by clear and concise justification if and when it happens. NASCAR should show fans why their concerns are unfounded and explicitly state how teams are going to benefit financially from the change. It’s one thing to simply inform fans that a change is happening and that they should like it and get used to it. It’s another to say how and why the change needs to happen so that the groups that are the lifeblood of the series can continue to be sustainable.

If NASCAR can clearly show fans why tradition requires to be bucked for the future of the series, then there’s a much better chance of a quieter response among those who dislike the modification. If NASCAR can’t, then it is worthy of a great deal of the reaction it will undoubtedly get when the numbers are moved.

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Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.