Change of Sonoma Raceway course results in more miles, fewer laps
The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Sonoma Raceway on June 23, the first road-course race of the season's 2019 schedule, will be shorter lap-wise but longer mileage-wise than Cup Series races there in recent years past with the addition of the track's Carousel to the NASCAR course.
The Carousel stretches from turn four, through turns five and six, and to the turn-seven hairpin, and its addition changes the course length from 1.99 miles to a 2.52-mile, 12-turn layout. As a result, NASCAR has decreased its lap count from 110 laps to 90 laps for the 2019 race, but the length of the race has extended from 218.9 miles to 226.8 miles.
NASCAR's premier series ran the original layout, including the Carousel, from its first race there in 1989 through the 1997 season before switching to the 1.99-mile layout in 1998.
The addition of the Carousel has prompted the addition of a new fan-viewing area, a 1,550 sq. ft. shaded structure called "The Point."
“With all the twists and turns of the Sonoma Raceway road course, every fan has their own opinion of the best place to watch the races,” Sonoma Raceway President and General Manager said, as quoted by Motorsport.com. “The Point adds one more terrific viewing option; not to mention a fun place to hang out.”