Race Weekend Central

Up to Speed: The NASCAR Hall of Fame’s “Series Challenge”

Voting Day at the NASCAR Hall of Fame

(Photo: Getty Images)

Earlier this week, the NASCAR Hall of Fame announced the five members of its ninth class, to be inducted in January 2018.  The five inductees are Robert Yates, Red Byron, Ray Evernham, Ken Squier, and Ron Hornaday.  The 2018 class is typical in that it reflects some consensus picks and maybe one or two surprises, …

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Friday Faceoff: Will a Mid-Season Crew Chief Change Help Austin Dillon?

2016 xfinity homestead-miami speedway  austin dillon zach catanzareti

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

The latest NASCAR Hall of Fame Class was announced Wednesday (May 24) and includes Red Byron, Robert Yates, Ray Evernham, Ken Squier and Ron Hornaday Jr.  Opinions? Michael Massie: All five legends — and all of the nominees — deserve to be in the HoF. Byron and Squier should have already been in. I know …

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Up to Speed: Stage Racing Makes All-Star Event Just Another Race

2017 Charlotte All Star CUP Kyle Larson pack racing Lesley Miller NKP

(Photo: Lesley Miller NKP)

Finding the right formula for NASCAR’s All-Star Race has been a moving target for the last several years.  However, Saturday night’s event has presented NASCAR with a new problem.  The All-Star Race felt entirely too ordinary. To NASCAR’s credit, the sanctioning body did throw a few new twists at its top competitors.  The most intriguing …

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Up to Speed: Toyota Still Searching for Consistent Speed

2017 Kansas I CUP Kyle Busch car NIgel Kinrade NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade / NKP)

Saturday night’s race at Kansas Speedway was not the cure for what ails Joe Gibbs Racing.  The four-car organization did deliver a stronger performance then it did at Texas Motor Speedway last month. However, it is clear that JGR’s intermediate track speed is still lacking.  The team’s slump is surprising, given its run of success …

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Friday Faceoff: How Much Wrecking Is Too Much?


(Photo: Nigel Kinrade/NKP)

Aric Almirola and the No. 43 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team received penalties for failing laser inspection following the race at Talladega Superspeedway, including a loss of points for Almirola and owner Richard Petty and a three-race suspension and fine for crew chief Drew Blickensderfer.  Did NASCAR do the right thing, staying in line …

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Up to Speed: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Forges his own Path to Victory

2017 Talladega I CUP Ricky Stenhouse Jr burnout Nigel Kinrade NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade / NKP)

In the opening stages of Sunday’s GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway, it was evident that the memory of the 2016 Daytona 500 was fresh in everyone’s mind.  During that race, many of the Toyota drivers exhibited a highly-coordinated style of drafting that help Denny Hamlin secure the victory. On Sunday, as in this year’s Daytona …

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Up to Speed: Rules Overshadow Racing in Richmond

2017 Richmond I NXS Darrell Wallace Jr pack racing Matthew T Thacker NKP

(Photo: Matthew Thacker / NKP)

NASCAR fans at Richmond International Raceway saw some great racing this weekend.  However, they also saw two races with wacky endings.  Both the XFINITY Series race on Saturday and Sunday’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event had twist endings that were bought about by rule violations.  NASCAR made good calls in some instances, bad calls …

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Up to Speed: Erik Jones Pursues His First Win

2017 Martinsville Cup zach catanzareti erik jones

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

Erik Jones has not missed a beat during his rookie season in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series thus far. Piloting the brand-new second car for Furniture Row Racing, Jones got collected in an accident at Daytona International Speedway that was not of his making. Since then, the No. 77 team is climbing through the standings.  …

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Up to Speed: Opportunity Knocks for Roush-Fenway Racing

2017 Fontana CUP Ricky Stenhouse Jr Trevor Bayne Nigel Kinrade NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade / NKP)

Five years ago, seven races into the 2012 season, Roush-Fenway Racing looked like the team to beat for the championship. Greg Biffle had just captured his first win of the season at Texas Motor Speedway, breaking a 49-race winless streak and allowing him to extend his points lead. Matt Kenseth was Biffle’s closest pursuer in points …

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Up to Speed: Much Ado About Jimmie Johnson

2017 Fontana CUP Jimmie Johnson helmet Ruaty Jarrett NKP

(Photo: Ruaty Jarrett/NKP)

Going into Sunday’s O’Reilly Auto Parts 500, the talk of the garage was Texas Motor Speedway’s new race surface and new configuration.  Even with all the new elements in Sunday’s race, Jimmie Johnson conquered TMS for the seventh time. Yes, Johnson is a winner in 2017 after struggling during the first few weeks of the …

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Up to Speed: Everything is Great at Martinsville

2017 Martinsville cup zach catanzareti kyle larson

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

In the still young 2017 season, NASCAR is trying to find reasons for fans to get excited.  First, there was the implementation of the new stage format.  Pre-determined cautions with points awarded to the top 10 drivers mid-race made for some initial curiosity at Daytona International Speedway. However, stage racing has mostly led to more aggressive …

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Friday Faceoff: Should NASCAR Go Back to Cali More Than Once?

2017 Atlanta CUP Jimmie Johnson racing Matthew T Thacker NKP

(Photo: Matthew T. Thacker/NKP)

After another good show for both the NASCAR XFINITY and Cup series, Auto Club Speedway, a track that’s hosted some of the best races on intermediate tracks in recent years, generated a lot of positive talk.  Does the track deserve another shot at a second race? Amy Henderson, Senior Editor: Whoa there, buckaroo. Yes, the last …

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