Sunday, Jan 29

MENCS: 2018 Monster Energy All Star Race Preview

Saturday nights Monster Energy All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway will showcase the sports best drivers in a 80 lap exibition race under the lights.

For the first time in the tracks history, NASCAR will run restrictor plates; the ones similar at Talladega and Daytona. The field will include all 2017 and 2018 race winners, plus former series champions and All-Star race winners that are still competing full-time in the series. The three stage winners from the Open will also qualify for the event.

No stage will end under yellow flag conditions and only green flag laps count in the fourth and final stage.

Defending All-Star race winner Kyle Busch will look to repeat his success from last year. Driver NO. 18 is on a hot streak at the moment, scoring three wins in his first 12 races of the 2018 season. 

"For us, being an all-star and being in the All-Star Race is one of the most fun things we get to do each year,’’ Busch said. "I’d say the Clash is another one of those and, with the All-Star Race, they are certainly two fun races where we get a chance to go after just a win and bring home the checkers or end up on the wrecker.

"It’s an exciting night and there’s a lot of energy there. It gives you the opportunity to run that many qualifying laps in a row. That’s all you’re doing – you’re giving it all you’ve got every single lap." - Kyle Busch said

Jimmie Johnson, the all-time winningest driver at the Monster Energy All-Star Race with four victories will look to turn his 2018 season around with a million dollar check in hand. 

In 16 All-Star Race starts, Johnson has four trophies and nine top-five finishes – including a runner-up finish in 2007 and a third-place showing last May in the No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet. And in a race known for its hard-charging, win-at-all-costs style, Johnson has only one DNF in all those starts.

2017 Monster Energy Cup Series champion Martin Truex Jr. set a presiden at last years Coca-Cola 600 leading 392 of 400 laps to win the sports longest race. Driver NO. 78 is the most recent All-Star Race winner leading 91 laps to win the Bank of America 500 last October at Charlotte Motor Speedway. 

Truex will look for his first All-Star win on Saturday night. He has two wins in the open (2007 and 2010) with a race best runner-up in 2010. 

The Open: The qualifying race for the All-Star Race; The Open will be a field made up of non-winners looking to race their way in to Saturday's main event. Notable drivers include: Chase Elliott, Alex Bowman, William Byron, Aric Almirola, Daniel Suarez, Erik Jones and this years Daytona 500 runner-up Darrell Wallace Jr., will be among the field looking to race their way in. 

The 2018 Monster Energy All-Star Race is Saturday May 19, 2018 with coverage beginning at 8 p.m. Eastern on Fox Sports 1. 


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