Brett has been following the sport of NASCAR since the beginning of the 2006 NASCAR Sprint Cup season. Since Brett was 13, he has had a passion of chasing a job in sports that not many get the opportunity of doing. He has been in the NASCAR media since the middle of the 2010 season. Since then, he has been a part of many racing podcast shows to improve his talents. You can find him on twitter @NASCAR_Brett.
This weekend the NASCAR Nationwide Series will head back East to the Bristol Motor Speedway for the 32nd annual Drive to Stop Diabetes 300. This will be the first of two stops for the series at the 0.533-mile short track oval, located in Tennessee. It will also be the first short track race of the season.
The entry list for Bristol Motor Speedway currently features a total of 42 drivers. If 42 drivers still remain on entry list before qualifying, two drivers will miss the race as 40 will make it in. Some of the drivers you’ll see this weekend include, Kevin Harvick, Matthew Carter, Ryan Blaney, Timmy Hill, Ruben Garcia Mateos, Kelly Admiraal, Cale Conley, Will Kimmel III, Willie Allen and Carl Long.
Cale Conley will make his NASCAR Nationwide Series debut this weekend driving the No. 33 Chevrolet. Conley will be the 37th driver to have made their debut at the Bristol Motor Speedway in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. He will have sponsorship backing from Okuma this weekend.
The last nine NASCAR Nationwide Series races has been won with a 13th or better starting position. With starting position such a key role, it will put a lot of pressure on the drivers in qualifying and with this weekend being the first short track with this new qualifying system, it will make things much more interesting.
On late Tuesday afternoon, NASCAR made the announcement to some changes to the qualifying procedure on cooling the engines. Previously, teams would go out onto the track to run a slow lap to help cool the engine down before the next run. Many drivers said this was a safety issue, and it needed to be resolved especially for the short track races. NASCAR will allow teams to connect the right or left side, whichever they choose, through the hood flap to cool the engine. NASCAR will no longer allow teams to make a cool down lap.
Where to watch:
The NASCAR Nationwide Series will be televised live on ESPN2 at 1:30 p.m. Et on Saturday. The Performance Racing Network will carry the live radio portion of the event. You can listen on many radio stations around the country, PRN mobile application or on GoPRN.com.
Today at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Brad Keselowski made a last lap pass to win the 17th annual Kobalt Tools 400. Keselowski won his first race of the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series aseason and his 11th victory of his seven-year-old career. Just by one lap, over Kyle Busch, Keselowski led the most laps this afternoon of 54. Since Jeff Burton in 2000, Keselowski became the first driver to sweep both the Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series races in the same weekend at Las Vegas.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. came home in the second spot for the second weekend in a row. Earnhardt Jr. was the race leader until running out of fuel coming off turn four. So far, Earnhardt Jr. is three-for-three this year by finishing inside the top-five in every race in 2014. He was just 0.530 seconds short of the win this afternoon.
Finishing third was Paul Menard after having a very strong day at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. In eight starts at the 1.5-mile oval, Menard finished inside the top-10 for his third time. During green flag pit stops, Menard was able to stay up-front because of pit strategy and out drove Johnson while some drivers was making their stops to lead a total of six laps for an extra bonus point.
The next race for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will be at the Bristol Motor Speedway. You can catch the race live on FOX at 1:00 p.m. Et. The Performance Racing Network will provide the live radio portion of the race. You can listen on many stations around the country, PRN mobile application or on GoPRN.com.
Brad Keselowski gambled his way to the victory at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway this afternoon after a battery issue with about 10 laps remaining that nearly cost him his 28th victory in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. Keselowski dominated the race by leading a total of four different times to go on and lead 144 of the 200 scheduled laps. Today marked Keselowski’s third top-10 finish and first win of the 2014 racing season.
Coming home in second was home-town boy Kyle Busch. Busch had an issue with a restart that could have took him to the lead later on. He was able to close in on Keselowski with 10 laps remaining but lapped traffic had a say in that. In his 11th start today at Las Vegas, Busch led a total of 33 laps and finished inside the top-10 for his third time. He qualified seventh for the race earlier today, but had to go to the tail end at the start for unapproved adjustments. Despite this, it did not hold him back as within the first 15 laps, Busch was inside the top-10.
Kyle Larson finished the event in the third position after having some struggles early on. Larson nearly spun the car in the opening laps that put damage on the No. 42 Target Chevrolet for Turner-Scott Motorsports. Larson started the day off from the fourth position to post his first top-10 in two starts at Las Vegas.
The NASCAR Nationwide Series will head East for some short track racing in the Drive to Stop Diabetes 300 at the Bristol Motor Speedway. You can see it live on ESPN2 at 1:00 p.m. Et. The Performance Racing Network will provide live radio coverage of the event. You can listen on many radio stations around the contry, PRN mobile application or on GoPRN.com.
Ty Dillon won his first career pole this afternoon at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway for today’s Boyd Gaming 300 with a time of 29.625 seconds, 182.278 mph. Dillon was the fastest rookie in the final round. Out of three Nationwide Series races this season, Dillon will start inside the top-10 for his second time in 2014.
Starting second will be last weekend’s pole sitter, Brad Keselowski after posting a fast time of 181.702 mph, 29.719 seconds. Keselowski was just 0.094 seconds off of Dillon’s fastest time. In eight starts at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, he will start inside the top-10 for his fifth time.
Starting third will be the 2014 Daytona 500 winner, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Earnhardt Jr. ran a fast time and speed of 29.810 seconds, 181.147 mph. This will be the first time this season in two starts where he will start inside the top-10 in a Nationwide Series race. He was the fastest driver during the first of three sessions today.
There was no racing incidents during the three knockout qualifying rounds. Also, no drivers will be going home as only 40 cars showed up to race in this afternoon’s Boyd Gaming 300.
Joey Logano won his eighth career pole today at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway by breaking the track record with a 27.939 seconds, 193.278 mph. Logano beat teammate Brad Keselowski with one minute remaining in the third and final session. Logano only turned one lap in the five minute session for the pole run.
Starting second will be Brad Keselowski. Within the final minutes of qualifying, Keselowski was knocked off the top spot by his teammate. His fastest time for his one and only lap clocked in at a 27.967 seconds, 193.099 mph. Keselowski was just 0.026 seconds off of his teammates fastest lap time of the third session.
Clint Bowyer rounded out the top-three today with a 28.021 seconds, 192.713 mph. Bowyer turned three total laps with the fastest on the first time across the start/finish line. He was just 0.082 seconds off of the pole.
There was no on-track incidents during the three total rounds of qualifying. With 48 driver’s total, five went home. Those include, Blake Koch, Landon Cassill, Dave Blaney, Joe Nemechek and J.J. Yeley.
This weekend the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will leave Phoenix International Raceway, and head North West, to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the 17th annual Kobalt Tools 400. This will mark stop three of the 36 race schedule for 2014.
The entry list features a total of 48 drivers scheduled to qualify this evening. Five total drivers will go home following qualifying. Some of the drivers you’ll see this weekend include, Trevor Bayne, Travis Kvapil, Timmy Hill, Blake Koch, Landon Cassill, J.J. Yeley, Jeff Burton, Dave Blaney and Josh Wise.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. heads into this weekend hoping to get another top-two finishing position. The 2014 Daytona 500 champion comes into this weekend with a lot of momentum after a second place finish last weekend. In 14 starts at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Earnhardt Jr. has only two top-five finishes. Though, in those 14 starts, he has scored seven top-10’s at the 1.5-mile oval.
Matt Kenseth heads into Vegas this weekend to roll the dice in hopes to capture his fourth win. During his best seasons, in 2003 and 2004, he has drove his way to victory lane. Last year, Kenseth scored the victory and went on to finish the season with seven total victories and second in the standings. He definitely will be one of the drivers to pick this weekend.
Two drivers hope to score a good finish at their home track this weekend in Las Vegas. These two drivers are Kyle and Kurt Busch. Kyle has one win at this track, which came in 2009 from the pole. Kurt Busch has 24 Sprint Cup Victories in his 15-years of racing in the series, but does not have a win yet at Las Vegas. In 13 total starts, Kurt has finished inside the top-five only once and inside the top-10 only three times. He hopes to take his No. 41 Chevrolet to the victory on Sunday.
Where to watch:
You can watch Sunday’s Kobalt Tools 400 live on FOX at 2:30 p.m. Et. The Performance Racing Network will carry the live radio portion of the event. You can listen on many stations around the country, on the Performance Racing Network mobile application or on GoPRN.com.
This weekend the NASCAR Nationwide Series will head to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the 18th annual Boyd Gaming 300. This will finally be the first weekend of the 2014 season where there will be no chances of rain.
A total of 40 drivers are scheduled to race this weekend. Some of those include Ryan Ellis, Mike Wallace, Matt Crafton, Ryan Sieg, Josh Wise, Matt Dibenedetto, Jamie Dick, Derrick Cope, Kevin Lepage, Tommy Jo Martins, Daryl Harr, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., J.J. Yeley and David Ragan. No drivers will go home after qualifying tomorrow.
The last two NASCAR Nationwide Series races at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway has been won by Nationwide regulars. In 2012, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. drove his No. 6 Ford to the victory. In 2013, it was Sam Hornish Jr.’s turn to drive his No. 12 Ford to the victory. Several key drivers to watch this weekend include Trevor Bayne, Ty Dillon, Brendan Gaughan, Elliott Sadler and Brian Scott. These drivers are all found towards the top in the stats book.
The rookie battle tightens up moving into this weekend after two events already complete this season. The three drivers of Ty Dillon, Dylan Kwasniewski and Chase Elliott all within four points in the standings. Las Vegas Motor Speedway will be the first weekend that Dylan Kwasniewski and Chase Elliott will make a start at a 1.5-mile oval in the Nationwide Series.
This weekend will be the home race for three drivers total. Two of three of these drivers include, Dylan Kwasniewski and Brendan Gaughan, who still looks for their first career Nationwide Series win. Another driver looking to once again dominate a Nationwide Series race and also last weekend’s winner, Kyle Busch, grew up in the area with his older brother Kurt. This weekend could be Kyle’s 65th career win in the NNS if he could get the job done on Saturday afternoon.
Where to watch:
You can catch the 18th annual Boyd Gaming 300 Saturday live on ESPN2 at 4:00 p.m. Et. Live radio coverage will be provided by the Performance Racing Network. You can listen on many radio stations around the United States or on the PRN mobile application.
Today the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series took the track at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway for a four hour test session to see how the new configuration would hold up. Many teams chosen to stick with qualifying runs, race runs and a little bit of both.
Kevin Harvick posted the fastest lap this afternoon with a 28.399 seconds, 190.148 mph. He completed a total of 42 laps today and ran his fastest lap on his 42nd lap. Harvick heads into this weekend with a lot of momentum after a win last weekend at the Phoenix International Raceway.
“I thought it went really well. We struggled in the beginning just to get the feel. It took us a couple of hours to kind of get everything situated and get the balance of the car right,” said Harvick. “Then we felt pretty good about it after that. Changed a lot of stuff and did a lot of different things to the car. Felt like we made good head way in the end and hopefully we can progress on that tomorrow and make it even better.”
Second fastest today was Austin Dillon with a 28.490 seconds, 189.540 mph. Dillon turned a total of 56 laps in his No. 3 Cheerios Chevrolet with his best lap coming on his 55th time around the track. He was just 0.091 seconds behind the session leader, Kevin Harvick.
Trevor Bayne led the session some this afternoon before Harvick took him off the top spot. His fastest lap came on his 34th circuit around the speedway with a fast time of 28.629 seconds, 188.620 mph. Bayne turned a total of 38 laps during the four hour session.
There was two incidents this afternoon that brought out the caution. One was early on after Brian Vickers smacked the wall and suffered some cosmetic damage to the side of his No. 55 Aarons Toyota. That car was the team’s primary and will fix the car before tomorrow’s practice sessions. The second incident involved Dave Blaney off turn four towards the end of the test session where he spun. He did not hit anything.
Last Friday at the Phoenix International Raceway, the NASCAR world got to see the brand new qualifying system put in place. The old procedures was dual, boring, and was so un-television friendly, and also lacked so much action for those sitting in the grandstands at the track.
The old procedures was one car allowed on-track at one time for up to two laps. One advantage to the system was every driver was on equal game. The biggest disadvantage was the lack of action. Yeah, sometimes there would be action, like when it came to the track record stuff and following at home with television graphics, but at the track it would be dual without the lap trackers.
The new format brings a lot of flair to the mix with excitement both at the track, and watching on television. At tracks less than 1.25 mile in length, all cars will run on track for 30 minutes total. For round two, the fastest twelve drivers from the first session will have a shootout for the pole. At tracks 1.25 miles and bigger, all cars will make runs on the track for 25 minutes. Once the 25 minutes are up, NASCAR will reset the board and run those fastest cars once again for ten minutes. Once again, officials will reset the board and run a five minute timed session with the fastest twelve cars from the second session. The driver who posts the fastest time in this third session will earn the pole. There are much more disadvantages in this for the drivers but that’s what makes it exciting, right? This puts more pressure on the driver, which in turn, makes it more fun for the fans to watch!
Many race fans seemed to enjoy the new style of qualifying also. With the risk vs. reward format it brings much drama, which is what the fans want. FOX Sports seen a viewing increase of 14% over the 2013 season. It also ranked the No. 2 most watched program on the channel last week. So with that said, it is safe to say that this particular format will stay around for a very long time.
While FOX seen an increase of viewers under this new format, it might just have a decrease soon. During qualifying on Friday afternoon, many fans took to twitter to complain about the 10-15 minute delay between live action and the television feed. With this new format, it allows about a one hour time slot and then some to allow time for NASCAR to clean up from a wreck or two, and making it more television friendly, which was one of NASCAR’s goals. In my honest opinion, these huge delays are stupid under this new format. Yes, I know, the single car qualifying would start out live and get behind the further it ran. That’s not my point. My point is this was designed to fit the television window, yet FOX Sports still wants to delay it. Another thing that many was very upset with was the fact that under the logo in right hand corner it said live. They was not even close to live and FOX needs to remove that. When SPEED was still a thing, at least in the United States, it would show an event is live and when they started delaying it as the more they showed commercials, they would take the “live” indicator all of the television screen.
But besides the negative stuff about this, it is really a good format for NASCAR. It’ll only help bring much more excitement and attendance to qualifying at the tracks. NASCAR and its drivers are happy about this new system, except maybe for the team owners, but if it makes the fans happy, it should stay in place for a very long time.
Kevin Harvick captured his 24th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win this afternoon at the Phoenix International Speedway after having a very dominant car this afternoon. Harvick led the event four different times and led a total of 224 laps of the event, which was the most of any driver today.
“Man, this just solidifies so many things and so many decisions," said Harvick. "I’ve just got to thank all these guys at Stewart-Haas Racing and I’d like to thank Sprint and the fans; Jimmy John’s, Budweiser, Outback, Chevrolet, and everybody who makes this thing go ‘round. It’s been so much work with all the time and effort that these guys have put in, but what a race car.”
Finishing in the second position, was last weekend's Daytona 500 winner, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Though he was not able to lead any laps, Earnhardt Jr., ran a very consistant race to stay nearly inside the top-10 all afternoon long. He still leaves Phoenix with the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points lead after two races. He was just 0.489 seconds behind the race winner, Kevin Harvick.
“Yeah we had a great car. (Kevin) Harvick was so fast all weekend, congratulations to him and his whole team. They did an awesome job getting ready for this race and were just fast out of the gate," said Dale Earnhardt, Jr. "We got a little bit better; we leaned on our teammates and got the car a lot better. Steve (Letarte) and those guys just keep getting better and better. These cars I’m driving I think are the best in the garage. Right at the end of the race I think we were a little bit quicker than Kevin (Harvick). Just real, real happy with the cars, just hate to come home second, but that No. 4 car was quick all week.”
The pole sitter, Brad Keselowski, came home in the third place when the 312 lap event concluded. He led a total of only three laps, as his teammate Joey Logano, led the most laps of any driver with 71. When the green flag flew to begin the race, Logano took the lead, while Keselowski dropped back to the second spot and slipped away all from there. He later on re-took the lead for one lap for a restart, and then once again later on under the same circumstances.
“That was everything we could do to get up there and get third. Nobody had anything for Kevin. We did the best we could and that was really all we had," said Keselowski. “He was good everywhere. I am not sure there wan anywhere he didn’t have an advantage.”
The next race for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will be in seven days at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 9th. Coverage will begin live on FOX at 2:00 p.m. Et. Radio coverage will be provided by the Performance Racing Network. PRN broadcasts are avalible on many stations around the country, PRN app, or on GoPRN.com.