New Hampshire Motor Speedway may run Sprint Cup race in 2015 under the lights

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New Hampshire Motor Speedway is considering the possibility of running one of its two annual Sprint Cup races under the lights for the first time in track history.

“What do you think of @NHMS possibly getting a night race?” came a question to Dale Earnhardt Jr. — who then retweeted it to NHMS — and  track president Jerry Gappens on Twitter.

To that, Gappens responded, “Hey @DaleJr @Greenie9374, @nhms is working w/ @NASCAR & @NASCARonNBC on possibility of night racing for 2015. #NewEngland fans would love it.”

We’re not sure if that means if NHMS’s first Sprint Cup weekend of 2015 – it is sandwiched in mid-July this year between the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona and the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis – would get the honor.

Or, perhaps NHMS’s traditional race in the Chase for the Sprint Cup would be under the lights.

Either way, a night race might also mean such an event is held on a Saturday night, allowing fans that travel a distance to attend an easier way to get home for work on Monday.

Holding a night race on a Sunday – even if it means in prime time on TV – might be a bit more difficult for fans to attend logistically.

Regardless, we’re all for it. NHMS is a great little one-mile flat oval in the very picturesque and bucolic hills just north of Concord, N.H.

The place is almost always sold-out or close to it. We feel confident fans would love a night race there.

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

Ken Roczen signs with HEP Progressive Ecstar Suzuki for 2023

Roczen Progressive Ecstar Suzuki
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ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).

“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.

“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”

For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.

“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.

“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”

Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.

“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.