Race Weekend Central

Friday Faceoff: Is Dover Still a Monster, or Has Miles Gone Mild?

2019 Dover Cup Zach Catanzareti

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

Dover International Speedway is known as the Monster Mile, but races there of late have been relatively tame. What do you attribute that to, and is the nickname still appropriate? Mike Neff: If you look at the drivers getting out of the cars after 400 laps at Dover, it absolutely deserves its nickname. Racing there has …

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The Underdog House: Dover Downer

2019 Dover Cup Zach Catanzareti Matt Dibenedetto

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

Top of The Class Rain kept the cars in the garage all day on Sunday, and Dover proved to be rather monstrous to our underdog contingent on Monday. In fact, the 20th-place finish notched by Matt DiBenedetto and Leavine Family Racing is the lowest “best in class” result of 2019 thus far. Part of that …

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Friday Faceoff: Are Airborne Cars Just Part of the Game At Talladega?

2016 Talladega I Cup Multicar Crash John Harrelson Nkp

(Photo: John Harrelson / NKP)

NASCAR made a few judgment calls late Sunday during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event at Talladega Superspeedway, including a red flag, allowing the race to continue after one last-lap crash but throwing the caution after a second. Did the sanctioning body properly handle each situation? Mark Kristl: Typically the sanctioning body is in …

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The Underdog House: The Other Draft Day

Monster Energy Nascar Cup Series

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Top of The Class Ryan Preece might be one of the few drivers who would be happy with a few more races at Daytona and Talladega. He seems to have taken to the multi lane, high speed chess game quite well. Preece scored a third-place finish in the Geico 500 on Sunday (April 28), his …

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Friday Faceoff: Is Pack Racing a Better Show Than Tandem Drafting?

2018 Joey Logano Talladega Cup

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Ford has won every race at Talladega Superspeedway since fall 2015. Why do you think that is, and who is most likely to end their streak? Mark Kristl: I lack the engineering background, so my answer is this: Ford teams work extremely well together. They bring fast cars to the track, they draft together in practice, …

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The Underdog House: Half Mile Concrete Jungle

2019 Phoenix I Cup Matt Dibenedetto Nkp

(Photo: NKP)

Top of The Class Matt DiBenedetto and Leavine Family Racing have been quite the surprise thus far in 2019. In fact, this group had the kind of weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway that will have us revoking their underdog eligibility if it were to become a regular occurrence. Many fans were first introduced to DiBenedetto …

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The Underdog House: Shootout At The Underdog Corral

2019 Daytona I Cup Michael Mcdowell Nkp

Top of The Class Michael McDowell was easily the fastest dog in the west this week. His No. 34 Front Row Racing Ford was quick from the get go and backed it up on race day, starting and finishing in 15th. McDowell was once known primarily for the violent head-on collision and subsequent barrel roll …

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The Underdog House: Dogs with Chili, Slaw & a Top 20 Finish

Martinsville Cup 2019 Mike Neff Ty Dillon

Top of The Class Ty Dillon is back at the head of the underdog table this week. The number 13 turned out to be plenty lucky for Dillon, as his No. 13 Chevrolet finished in the 13th position in Sunday’s STP 500 at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday (March 24). For the Germain Racing driver, the …

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Friday Faceoff: Should There Be More Stringent Requirements to Race in Cup?

2019 Las Vegas I Cup Kurt Busch Nkp

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

After the debacle last Friday when no one posted a speed in the final round of qualifying, should NASCAR change the format? If so, how? Bryan Gable: I’ve been okay with group qualifying up until now, but what we saw on Friday is not acceptable. Single car qualifying would be an easy fix. Otherwise, introduce a …

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The Underdog House: Going Back To Cali

2019 Phoenix I Cup Chris Buescher Nkp

(Photo: NKP)

Top of The Class Chris Buescher reclaimed his spot as the top underdog yet again this week. Buescher’s 16th-place finish highlighted a rather uneventful Cup race for the have nots on Sunday (March 17) at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. For JTG Daugherty Racing and Buescher, the race mirrored their performance in many of …

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Friday Faceoff: Did Daniel Suarez Overreact to Michael McDowell Last Week?

2019 Phoenix I Cup Chase Elliott Pack Racing Nkp

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Based on what Michael McDowell did during qualifying last week, was Daniel Suarez‘s reaction warranted? Mark Kristl: Was it warranted? Probably not. In the heat of the moment though, I understood Suarez’s reaction. He qualified 28th. He wanted to gain some starting positions. He was frustrated and McDowell served as a scapegoat. Joy Tomlinson: I don’t …

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The Underdog House: Kicking Up A Little Dust

2019 Las Vegas I Cup Ty Dillon Tires Nkp

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Top of The Class Ty Dillon finally unseats Chris Buescher as the top dog this week. Dillon bested the 2015 Xfinity champion by one spot, finishing 15th in the Ticket Guardian 500 at ISM Raceway. For Germain Racing and Dillon, the 2019 season has begun relatively well. Dillon has advanced to the second round of …

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