Following on from the resounding global success of Netflix’s Formula 1: Drive to Survive, more and more behind-the-scenes documentary-style series have seemingly arisen from every competitive sport going.
From tennis and the ATP tour to golf and American football, the allure of peeking behind the curtain has gripped audiences all over the world and had a remarkable effect on interest – particularly American – growing exponentially within the sports.
Drive to Survive was released during a time of immeasurable restriction when fans were crying out for live sport and action amid the global pandemic. Season 1 debuted on Netflix in 2019, and since then, the ‘Drive to Survive effect’ has grown incrementally, not only in the U.S. but all over the world.
A record 570,000 viewers watched Season 5 during its first week in 2023 – a 40% jump from Season 4’s debut.
For a sport that feels so quintessentially American, NASCAR’s commercial success appears, from the outside at least, to exist solely within the U.S. This certainly makes NASCAR an interesting subject for Netflix’s latest Drive to Survive style venture.
But the increased appeal of the American speedway has grown in recent years, expanding across the border to Canada and Mexico, and even now in Europe’s Whelen Euro Series. Netflix will certainly hope to replicate F1’s interest in America’s premier motorsport.
“The series will feature exclusive access to drivers and teams, bringing fans behind the scenes at and away from the track while exploring the physical and mental challenges of competing for a championship at the world’s highest level of stock car racing.”
The 5-part docuseries will be streaming on Netflix early next year and will follow the journey of NASCAR drivers as they battle it out in the Playoffs for the 2023 Cup Series Championship.
The playoffs this year will feature the top 16 drivers on the circuit, with each passing race eliminating the bottom four until the final four drivers are left to race for the Championship in November.
Part of the appeal of Netflix’s Drive to Survive was the personalities of the drivers on the starting grid; how they deal with the high-pressure environment competing in the world’s fastest race, knowing that they sit in one of the most coveted seats in the sport.
Netflix’s NASCAR series will delve into the captivating personalities within the sport, along with their unique journeys to the pinnacle of NASCAR.
While the producers are certainly eager to unearth another hidden gem, much like F1’s celebrated figure Danny Ric, within NASCAR’s roster of drivers, brace yourself for more than just cougars in the back seat as these racers fearlessly chase victory.