8th Running of the New Hampshire 301 Sprint Cup Series Race

Last Year’s Race: Kyle Busch’s mid-season march toward a post-season berth continued with his third victory in four races.  The win lifted him from thirty-fifth to thirty-third in the point standings with seven races left in the regular season that would ultimately lead to a championship for the Joe Gibbs Racing driver.  Busch led ninety-five laps, including the final forty-nine trips around the one-mile oval.  The race ended under caution for Alex Bowman’s single-car accident that took place in Turn-2 after Busch took the white flag.  Brad Keselowski led a race-high 101 laps and finished second with Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano (Keselowski’s Team Penske teammate) and Dale Earnhardt Junior completing the top five … Pole sitter Carl Edwards led just nineteen laps and finished seventh … Busch was the ninth different winner in the last nine summertime races contested in New Hampshire dating back to 2007 … Denny Hamlin was going for a weekend sweep after winning the X-FINITY Series race twenty-four hours earlier but finished fourteenth on the Cup side.  He was one of twenty drivers running on the lead lap with Busch at the checkered flag.

Track Position at Loudon: Twenty-three of the forty-two Sprint Cup Series races run have been won from a starting position of tenth or better.  Ten winners have come from a starting position of twentieth or worse … Winning From the Pole in Loudon: Just five of forty-two Cup Series races have been won from the pole position, most recently by Ryan Newman in 2011 … Track Qualifying Record: Keselowski (Ford) … 140.598 miles per hour … 27.090 seconds … September 2014 … Track Record, Race Speed: Jeff Burton (Ford) … 117.134 mph … 2 hours, 42 minutes, 35 seconds … July 1997.

Practice Schedule: Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 12:55 p.m. (ET) … Saturday from 10 to 10:55 a.m. and 12:30 to 1:25 p.m. (ET) … Qualifying: TODAY at 4:45 p.m. (ET).

21st Running of the Auto Lotto 200 X-FINITY Series Race

Last Year’s Race: On paper, it looked like Denny Hamlin had an easy time of it in winning at New Hampshire – leading 145 of the two hundred laps to post his second X-FINITY Series win of the season.  But on the track, it was quite a different story.  Hamlin and Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch leaned hard on each other twice during the course of the afternoon while racing for position.  In one instance, contact early in the race sent Hamlin – the pole sitter – spinning and forced him to restart at the rear of the field.  But the Number-20 Toyota was strong, Hamlin charged back toward the front and took the lead at Lap-43.  With less than thirty laps to go, Austin Dillon jumped past Hamlin on the day’s final restart and led briefly.  But Hamlin pulled alongside Dillon a short time later and nudged him out of the way to reclaim the lead and drive off to his thirteenth career victory.  Dillon was critical of Hamlin’s bump-and-run tactic after the race as he had to settle for second place.  Brad Keselowski finished third and Busch was fourth, giving Sprint Cup Series drivers the top four finishing positions.  Rookie Daniel Suarez was fifth, the highest-placed X-FINITY Series regular.

Friday’s Practice Schedule: From 1 to 1:55 p.m. and 3 to 4:25 p.m. (ET) … Qualifying: Saturday at 11:15 a.m. (ET).

6th Running Of The Quaker State 400 Sprint Cup Series Race At Sparta, Kentucky

Recap of Last Year’s Race: Kyle Busch’s climb toward the top thirty – and a berth in the Chase – continued with his second win of the season in just seven starts. Busch led a race-high 163 laps, including the final twenty trips around the mile-and-a-half oval. The victory lifted him from thirty-seventh to thirty-fifth in the standings with eight races left in the regular season. After missing the first eleven races of the year while recovering from injuries suffered in February at Daytona, Busch’s average finish in seven starts was seventeenth. He led a parade of Joe Gibbs Racing cars into the top five at Kentucky. Denny Hamlin finished third, Carl Edwards fourth and Matt Kenseth fifth. Team Penske’s Joey Logano ran second, one-point-five seconds behind Busch at the checkered flag .With an eighth-place finish, regular-season points leader Kevin Harvick became the first driver to officially clinch his spot on the 2015 Chase Grid.

Track Position in Kentucky: Winners of the first five Sprint Cup Series races run have started first and ninth (Busch), first and eighth (Brad Keselowski), and sixteenth (Kenseth) …

Track Qualifying Record: Keselowski (Ford) … 188.791 miles per hour … 28.603 seconds … June 2014

Track Record, Race Speed: Keselowski (Dodge) … 145.607 mph … 2 hours, 45 minutes, 2 seconds … June 2012

Friday’s Practice Schedule: From 11 a.m. to 12:25 p.m. and 1:30 to 2:50 p.m. (ET) … Qualifying: TODAY at 6:45 p.m. (ET).

16th Running Of The Alsco 300 X-FINITY Series Race At Sparta, Kentucky

Recap of Last Year’s Race: Brad Keselowski darted past race lead Erik Jones nine laps from the finish and kept the Number-22 Team Penske Ford in front the rest of the way, beating Jones to the checkered flag by a quarter-second with Kyle Busch, Daniel Suarez and Elliott Sadler completing the top five. J-J Yeley, who had been awarded the pole position based on practice speeds after qualifying was rained out, failed to lead a single lap and finished eighteenth – two laps down to Keselowski. Brendan Gaughan rode home in ninth place on a day he celebrated his fortieth birthday.

Busch led a race-high eighty-eight laps, including one stretch of twenty-six midway through the second half of the race before the final caution sent drivers to pit road.

Keselowski and Jones opted for two tires while Busch took four, and the Joe Gibbs Racing driver never regained the lead … Points leader Chris Buescher finished eleventh but still managed to stretch his advantage to thirty- six points over Chase Elliott, who finished thirteenth in the race.

Track Position at Kentucky: All but three of the nineteen X-FINITY Series races run have been won from a starting position of sixth or better. The exceptions are 2001 winner Kevin Harvick, who qualified eleventh; Keselowski in 2013, nineteenth; and Harvick again in 2014, who started seventh … Winning From the Pole in Kentucky: Six of nineteen X-FINITY Series races have been won from the pole position, most recently by Austin Dillon in 2012 …

Track Qualifying Record: Carl Edwards (Ford) … 181.287 miles per hour … 29.787 seconds … June 2005 …

Track Record, Race Speed: Keselowski (Ford) … 131.162 mph … 1 hour, 56 minutes, 39 seconds … June 2013 …

Brad Keselowski Claims His Twentieth Career Victory And Third This Season

Brad Keselowski led a race-high 115 laps on Saturday night at Daytona International Speedway, including the final seventeen, to claim his twentieth career victory and third this season. The final caution period forced the race one lap past its scheduled distance. On the restart, Keselowski darted away from the field and beat runner-up Kyle Busch to the checkered flag by fifteen one-hundredths of a second. Trevor Bayne finished third with Joey Logano fourth and Ricky Stenhouse Junior fifth. Fords claimed four of the five top finishing positions with Busch’s Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota the only “outsider” among them. Pole sitter Greg Biffle led just one lap and finished eighth in the forty-car field.

Keselowski started fifth in his Number-2 Team Penske Ford, took his first lead nine laps into the race and ran steadily in the top five throughout the night. His three wins tie Busch for the series lead as drivers start thinking about seeding for the post-season Chase that begins in two-and-a-half months … Saturday’s race included five cautions, most notably for a massive crash that gobbled up half the field early in the second half of the race.

The twenty-two-car melee was triggered when Jamie McMurray brushed teammate Kyle Larson and then went up the track across the nose of Jimmie Johnson’s Chevrolet. Dale Earnhardt Junior and Kevin Harvick were among those victimized. Earnhardt was able to complete the race and finished twenty-first. Harvick could not and he placed thirty-ninth, watching his regular-season points lead shrink to fourteen over Keselowski – who advanced from fourth to second in the standings with nine races remaining before the Chase opens.

8th Running Of The Speediatrics 200 Camping World Truck Series Race At Iowa Speedway

Last Year’s Race: Erik Jones ended the night the same way he started it – at the front of the field. The then-19-year- old Kyle Busch Motorsports rookie led a race-high 112 laps, including the final forty-four trips around Iowa Speedway’s seven-eighths- mile oval. Jones’ margin of victory over runner-up – and fellow rookie – Brandon Jones was nearly six full seconds. Tyler Reddick finished third with points leader Matt Crafton fourth. Christopher Bell, one of Jones’ K-B- M teammates, came home fifth in his first Truck Series start. With the win, Jones became the first driver with back-to- back victories on the Newton oval since the track first hosted the Truck Series in 2009. He and Timothy Peters are now tied at the top of the track’s win list with two apiece. Peters rallied from his Number-16 starting spot to finish sixth, helping Toyota grab four of the top six finishing positions.

Crafton’s fourth-place finish kept him atop the series standings in his bid for a third straight title … The race included six lead changes among five drivers: Crafton, rookie Cameron Hayley, Johnny Sauter, Erik and Brandon Jones … There were six cautions for thirty-eight laps.

Track Position in Iowa: All nine of the Camping World Truck Series races run have been won from a starting position of eleventh or better … Winning From the Pole at Iowa: Four of nine races have been won from the pole, most recently by Jones in 2015 … Track Qualifying Record: German (air-MONN) Quiroga Junior (Toyota) … 138.620 miles per hour … 22.724 seconds … July 2013 … Track Record, Race Speed: Jones (Toyota) … 110.429 mph … 1 hour, 35 minutes, 5 seconds … July 2014 … Friday’s Practice Schedule: From 2 to 3:25 p.m. and 5 to 5:55 p.m. … Qualifying: Saturday at 3:45 p.m.

13 Cup Series Teams Will Test New Pavement At Kentucky Speedway

More than a dozen Sprint Cup Series drivers will take part in a two-day test next Monday and Tuesday at Kentucky Speedway, which is putting the finishing touches on a repaving project that’s added three degrees of banking to Turns-1 and 2 on the mile-and- a-half oval. Regular-season points leader Kevin Harvick, Team Penske’s Joey Logano, Wood Brothers Racing rookie Ryan Blaney and Kyle Busch – who has a series-leading three wins this year – are among the drivers scheduled to participate. The test is open to the public free of charge. Cars will be on the track each day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (local time) … NASCAR will return to “The Bluegrass State” next month for a tripleheader weekend featuring the Sprint Cup, X-FINITY and Camping World Truck Series.

Kyle Larson Takes The Pocono Green 250

“Mother Nature” kept her word on Saturday and Kyle Larson was in the right place at the right time to capitalize at Pocono Raceway. He had his Number-42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet at the front of the field when the race was stopped by rain three laps past the halfway point of the track’s inaugural X-FINITY Series race. A wet weekend was forecast heading into Saturday’s race, in which Larson led twenty-seven laps including the last nineteen trips around “The Tricky Triangle.”

Rookie pole sitter Erik Jones finished second with Ty Dillon, Kyle Busch and Joey Logano completing the top five. Elliott Sadler grabbed sixth place and cut three points off Daniel Suarez’s lead in the standings. Suarez finished ninth on Saturday and will carry an eleven-point advantage into the next race next weekend at Michigan International Speedway.

With Larson’s victory, Sprint Cup Series drivers have now won nine of the first twelve X-FINITY Series races run this season. Jones and Sadler are the only series regulars to taste victory. Larson started fourth in the forty-car field and had his first lead of the day at Lap-24 … The race included six lead changes among five drivers, four of which are Sprint Cup regulars: Busch, Logano, Larson and Aric Almirola.

Joey Logano Takes Sprint All-Star Race

Joey Logano chased race leader Kyle Larson down in the late stages of the final segment Saturday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, grabbing his final lead of the night just two laps from the finish and keeping the Number-22 Ford in front the rest of the way to notch his first victory in the annual non-points special event. Brad Keselowski finished second, giving Team Penske a one-two sweep in the race – which featured a new format that included mandatory pit stops within a prescribed period of time that left many competitors confused and uncertain of what was unfolding.

In a random draw before the night’s final thirteen-lap segment, it was revealed that the top eleven drivers would have to pit for four tires while the remainder of the field would remain on the track on old rubber. Kyle Busch and Jimmie Johnson restarted on the front row for the final segment but on worn tires, they were no match for competitors who clearly benefitted from the four-tire pit stop. Larson quickly moved into the lead and held the top spot until Logano’s late charge to victory. Larson brushed the outside wall while racing hard with Logano and slipped to sixteenth place at the finish.

Larson and Carl Edwards each won one of the two fifty-lap segments that preceded the final dash to the checkered flag, which netted Logano a one-million-dollar payday. Keselowski led a race-high thirty-nine laps en route to his runner-up finish. Dale Earnhardt Junior placed third with Edwards and Kurt Busch completing the top five.

Next Stop Dover International Speedway

Next stop Dover International Speedway for Sunday’s Triple-A 400 Drive for Autism, the twelfth race of the 2016 Sprint Cup Series. Going back to last fall, Kevin Harvick has won two of the last three races on one-mile ovals including a dominating victory when the series last visited Dover during the 2015 post-season Chase. Harvick returns atop this year’s regular-season standings, enjoying a four-point advantage over Kyle Busch … And speaking of Busch, his crew chief – Adam Stevens – will sit out Sunday’s race while serving a suspension for violating NASCAR’s new lug-nut rule last weekend at Kansas Speedway. Todd Berrier, who holds the title of director of inspections at Joe Gibbs Racing, will call race strategy for the defending Sprint Cup champion.


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