NASCAR announces 2013 Truck sked

NASCAR truck drivers will get down in the dirt next season.

The Camping World Truck Series will make its debut on a dirt track, the Tony Stewart-owned Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio.

NASCAR announced the full 2013 Truck schedule Wednesday, with two notable changes: the race on dirt and the series’ first international event.

On July 24, the trucks will make their dirt debut at Eldora. This event will be the first of two Wednesday night races for the series, joining Bristol Motor Speedway’s mid-week race on Aug. 21.

“We’ve had talks about getting the trucks on dirt in the past,” said Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR senior vice president of racing operations. “The door-to-door racing that our Truck series is known for plus Eldora’s popularity and Tony’s dedication to putting on great shows for the fans is a perfect fit. We’ll have a maximum starting field of 30 trucks at Eldora. More details on the race format are still being developed.”

Track owner Stewart admitted it had been tough not to talk about it until now. However, he’s thrilled to see the series coming there.

"It’s really a dream come true for us as not only a promoter, but I don’t think any of us really thought, like we mentioned, since 1970 the national series have never been to a dirt track," he said. "To imagine that 42 years later we’re going to be taking a national NASCAR series back to a dirt track is a huge honor for us."

Now the question is, will he compete in the race at his track?

Stewart isn’t sure yet.

"(That is) still up in the air," he said Wednesday. "A lot of me wants to compete, but at the same time I want to make sure as a promoter and track owner that I’m doing everything I can to ensure we have the best, quality, racing surface and show that we can provide.

"I haven’t made a decision 100 percent either way. Like I say, part of me definitely wants to be in a truck there and competing. At the same time, as a track owner I feel a lot of responsibility to make sure everything is going as planned and doing everything we can to ensure a great show."

Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (CTMP), a 2.459-mile, 10-turn road course in Bowmanville, Ont., will host its inaugural truck event on Sept. 1, becoming the first road-course track for the series since 2000 and putting a NASCAR national series race in Canada for a seventh consecutive season.

In addition, in 2013 — as previously announced — at road courses and tracks measuring 1.1 miles in length or less, the driver age restriction will be lowered to 16 years old. Currently, the minimum age to compete at the national series level is 18.

Here is a look at the full schedule for 2013:

2/22: Daytona International Speedway

4/6: Martinsville Speedway

4/14: Rockingham Speedway

4/20: Kansas Speedway

5/17: Charlotte Motor Speedway

5/31: Dover International Speedway

6/7: Texas Motor Speedway

6/27: Kentucky Speedway

7/13: Iowa Speedway

7/24: Eldora Speedway

8/3: Pocono Raceway

8/17: Michigan International Speedway

8/21: Bristol Motor Speedway

9/1: Canadian Tire Motorsport Park

9/8: Iowa Speedway

9/13: Chicagoland Speedway

9/28: Las Vegas Motor Speedway

10/19: Talladega Superspeedway

10/26: Martinsville Speedway

11/1: Texas Motor Speedway

11/8: Phoenix International Raceway

11/15: Homestead-Miami Speedway