Friday, Jan 21

MENCS: Camping World 500 Preview

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) rolls out of Las Vegas and heads to Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) for the Camping World 500. The first two stages will be 75 laps while the final stage will be a 162 lap shootout.

39 drivers are scheduled to compete on Sunday. No drivers will be sent home after qualifying on Friday.

This will be the 42nd race from PIR. 22 drivers have won the pole, while 24 drivers have won a race. Five races have been won from the pole position. Tony Stewart set the race record at 118.132 mph in 1999. Jimmie Johnson holds the qualifying record set back in 2015 at 143.158 mph.

MENCS drivers are excited to return to Phoenix for the fourth race of the season.

“We’ve started off on a really positive note with this AdvoCare team so far in 2017 and I’m confident that we can continue that this weekend in Phoenix. Phoenix is a challenging track that races a lot like a short track. I’m ready to get there this weekend and hopefully we can have another solid run on Sunday,” says Trevor Bayne.

"We don’t go to any other place like it.So, that is what makes it sort of unique.  There are certain racetracks that you can kind of judge off of and say ‘Oh we run well here’ and it’s going to be like ‘this’ place, so that is the kind of set-up we are going to go to.  At Phoenix, you don’t go to a lot of places like it and then on top of it, you kind of start the season there and you basically end the season there.  Everything that you’ve done in a nine-month span changes so much.  Even if you run well at the first race you don’t guarantee yourself that you are going to run well the second race. There's a lot that goes on during the season and it’s just unique because the races are so split apart and we just don’t go to really any racetracks like it,” said AJ Allmendinger.

“Sometimes you just go to tracks where things click right away and Phoenix is definitely one of those tracks for me,” said Erik Jones. “I felt really comfortable right off the bat and I’ve always had great cars and trucks there. Some of the tendencies of the track relate back to what I was used to racing short tracks and Late Models. It has a short track feel to it even as fast as it is.”

MENCS will have one practice session on Friday at 2:00 p.m. EST on Motor Racing Network (MRN) and Fox Sports 1 (FS1). Qualifying will also be on FS1 and MRN beginning at 7:30 p.m. EST. There will be two practice sessions at 12:00 p.m. EST and 2:30 p.m. EST on MRN and Fox Sports 2. The Camping World 500 will air on FOX and MRN beginning at 3:30 p.m. EST.

 

Caleb Whisler

I am 19 years old from Atlanta, GA. I have been following motorsports since I was born. Motorsports has been "passed down" in my family. I am named after NASCAR Hall of Famer, William Caleb Yarborough, also known as Cale. Growing up in the southeast, racing was something that was a Sunday tradition after church. What an honor it is to share that passion with others.

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