The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads to Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Brantley Gilbert Big Machine Brickyard 400, the only trip of the year to the famous speedway. The first stage will end on lap 50. The second stage will end on lap 100. The final stage will conclude at lap 160.
40 drivers are making the trek to Indianapolis to compete for 40 spots. No drivers will be sent home after qualifying on Saturday evening.
This weekend at Indianapolis kicks off a new weekend schedule for Cup drivers. There will be no on track activities for teams on Friday. However, there will be a NASCAR Fan Fest featuring many of these drivers. The events will consist of, but not limited to, the Hauler Parade, pit-stop contests, and a relay challenge with young fans.
Cup teams will have five sets of Goodyear tires for practice, one set for qualifying, and eight sets for the race. The right side tire will be the same compound ran last year at the speedway. However, Goodyear brought a new left side tire compound that is slated to provide more grip for drivers.
This weekend will be the 24th event from Indianapolis Motor Speedway. There have been 19 different pole winners and 13 different race winners. Only four drivers have won from the pole with Kyle Busch being the last driver to do so in last seasons event. In 2000, the race record was set by Bobby Labonte at 155.912 mph. In 2014, Kevin Harvick posted the qualifying record at 188.47 mph.
Here are what driver’s are saying about racing at Indianapolis:
“It’s pretty neat to race at Indy. I remember my first time at the track in the XFINITY Series a couple of years ago and how cool that was and now my first Brickyard 400. I think that’s another milestone for anyone’s career. I’m excited to make my first start in the Brickyard and hopefully have a good showing,” said Erik Jones. “It’s just neat to be at Indy and close to home really for me. It’s neat to be there at a track that not only has the Brickyard 400, but the Indy 500 and all the history involved is pretty special.”
“Indy is Indy. It’s the coolest racetrack that we get to race on, other than Daytona. The history, the prestige, the value of Indianapolis – it is defined by the number of decades they have produced races there and the atmosphere. It’s very electric at Indianapolis,” said Kurt Busch. “For me to actually get to run the Indy 500 in the month of May is a little different than when we race there in July because of the fact it is their backyard, it is their stage. Those Indiana natives love their track. What makes Indy special is the people.”
"It's the Brickyard. It's the history of motorsports in America. It's that yard of bricks. It's a special place when you think about everyone who's been there associated with F1, IndyCars, motorcycles and NASCAR. It's unique because of the four corners, the long straightaways and the flatness. To me, it's just unique in so many ways. It's a fun place to drive and yet, it's quite a challenge at the same time,” said Ryan Newman.
Cup teams will have two practice sessions on Saturday at 9:00 a.m. EDT and 11:00 a.m. EDT on CNBC. Teams will qualify at 6:00 p.m. EDT on Saturday on NBCSN. The Brickyard 400 will air on NBC beginning at 2:30 p.m. EDT. Indianapolis Motor Speedway Radio Network, in conjunction with Performance Racing Network, will broadcast qualifying and the race on the radio.
After a wild race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, the NASCAR Xfinity Series drivers head to the world-renown Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the sixth annual Lilly Diabetes 250. The race will be consist of two stages of 30 laps each and a final stage of 40 laps for a race total of 100 laps.
40 drivers are scheduled to arrive in Indianapolis. There will be six notable Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers in the field including Paul Menard, Ty Dillon, Reed Sorenson, Kyle Busch, Joey Logano, and Erik Jones.
This weekend will look different for fans as NASCAR as brought a new competition package exclusively for Indianapolis. The 2016 spoiler and splitter will be reimplemented, new aero ducts attached to the front bumper, and a 7/8-inch restrictor plate will be used. The goal of this package is to create close racing and passing opportunities for drivers. The new implementations are erected to increase the drat envelope by 25%.
Teams will have six sets of Goodyear tires at their disposal for the whole event at Indianapolis. Teams will run the same tire combination on the right side of the car as they did last season. The left-side tire compound is slated to provide more grip
This will be the sixth event at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Xfinity Series. There have only been two pole winners and three race winners. Three races have been won from the pole with Ky. Busch being the last driver to do so last season. In 2014, Ty Dillon set the race record at 137.153 mph. In 2016, Ky. Busch set the pole winning speed at 181.939 mph.
Here is what drivers are saying about this weekend at Indianapolis:
“I am stoked to be going to Indy this weekend, it isn’t every day that we are able to race at such a historic track. This will be an interesting race to see how it plays out with NASCAR adding restrictor plates to the cars this week,” said Matt Tifft. “Everyone will be on the same playing field where strategy will be a huge determining factor in who comes out on top. With Indy being narrow, it will be important for our No. 19 Camry to get up front and stay there so that we don’t get wrapped up in any wrecks.”
“I tested this superspeedway package at IMS and I think we are definitely going to be in a pack, but I really don’t know how it’s going to race with 39 other cars. At the test we did it with three, but it’s going to change a lot when we get a whole pack out there. It’s a unique situation, something we’ve never done in NASCAR with a track like IMS and a Superspeedway package,” said Ryan Reed.
"It is going to be incredible to roll through the gates at Indianapolis and know the history you are amongst. To know the past, the people that have run there and won there, it's truly incredible. Especially coming from the short track background, where you read all of the stories of everyone back in the 1960s, '70s and even before, and how they wanted to get to Indy and that was their goal,” said Daniel Hemric. “To know that nonchalantly we're going there this week is pretty incredible. I'm looking forward to it. I know it is a place where RCR has had success in the past, which is always a good thing. I've won races at the old IRP short track and other tracks in the area, but to know we'll be battling there on the main stage in the Blue Gate Bank Chevrolet is pretty cool.”
On Friday, Xfinity teams will be the only drivers on the track. Teams will have two practice sessions at 1:00 p.m. EDT and 3:00 p.m. EDT on the NBC Sports App. Xfinity teams will qualify at 12:30 p.m. EDT on Saturday and race at 3:30 p.m. EDT on NBC Sports Network. The Indianapolis Motor Speedway Radio Network, in conjunction with Performance Racing Network, will have radio coverage of the Lilly Diabetes 250.
ROSSBURG, Ohio— After a wild night at Eldora, it was Matt Crafton who was victorious in the Eldora Dirt Derby snapping a 27 race winless streak.
"My first dirt win - a lot of fun," said Crafton, who picked up his 14th career win. "In the second part of that race we down-right just stunk. It was my fault. We over-tightened it a little bit in the first run. It got free and we just went back to the way we started the race. I knew I was getting beat down low. Finally at the end, I said, 'Well, we may have to tear the right- side off to get the win.' I started doing it and this truck became a rocket ship."
This is Crafton’s first victory of 2017. He locked his way into the playoffs in September. Crafton is the seventh different winner in 2017. This is Crafton’s 14th career victory.
After having a dominating car for majority of the race, Stewart Friesen finished second.
“Our Halmar team was good. Our Chevy was great. We had a long run truck. We didn’t come to run second. I am proud of these guys,” said Friesen
After going to a backup car in final practice, Chase Briscoe finished third.
Grant Enfinger, John Hunter Nemechek, Bobby Pierce, Noah Gragson, Justin Haley, Christopher Bell, and Austin Cindric rounded out the top-10.
There were eight lead changes among four different drivers. The caution flag flew for a total of 10 times for 59 laps. The time of race was one hour, 45 minutes, and 44 seconds. The average speed was 42.560 mph. The margin of victory was 1.960 seconds. Crafton and Friesen won the first two stages.
Next up for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series is a trip to Pocono Raceway on July 29th for the Overton’s 150 from Pocono Raceway. The race will be broadcasted on FOX and Motor Racing Network at 1:00 p.m. EDT.
ROSSBURG, Ohio— Stewart Friesen was the fastest qualifier in the fifth annual Eldora Dirt Derby from Eldora Speedway. This is his first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series pole.
Friesen will start P1 in the first qualifying race. Friesen posted a speed of 90.000 mph at 20.000 seconds.
After moving to a backup car after practice, Chase Briscoe posted a speed of 89.383 mph. Kaz Grala was third fastest at 89.202 mph. Christopher Bell was third fastest at 89.038 mph. Noah Gragson was fifth fastest at 88.933 mph.
The No. 44 Martins Motorsports of JR Heffner withdrew after blowing up an engine during qualifying.
Here is how the heats will look:
John Hunter Nemechek
The qualifying races will air on Fox Sports 2 at 7:30 p.m. EDT. The main event will air on Fox Business Network at 9:30 p.m ET.
NEW WESTON, Ohio— In a mid-week spectacle, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series thunders to Eldora Speedway for the Eldora Dirt Derby at Eldora Speedway in New Weston, Ohio. This race will feature qualifying, five heats, and a main event. The main event will be broken into stage lengths of 40, 50, and 60 laps.
For qualifying, teams will go in order of a random draw. Teams will complete two laps of single car runs. The fastest driver will be awarded the Keystone Pole Award at the end of the qualifying session. Qualifying determines what heat a driver will be in.
Each heat will consist of 10 green flag laps only. The top-five in each heat will be automatically entered into the main feature. Those drivers who do not advance will compete in the last chance heat. The last chance heat will be 15 green flag laps, where the top-two finishers will advance. The rest of the field will be filled per the rule book.
In the main event, the caution laps between stages will not count. Teams will have the option to pit during the caution. Teams who chose to pit will start behind those who did not pit. Positions cannot be improved on pit road.
There have been four events at Eldora Speedway. There have been four different pole winners and race winners. No races have been won from the pole position. In 2013, Austin Dillon set the race record at 67.401 mph. Ken Schrader set the qualifying record in 2013 at 91.329 mph.
Drivers are excited for a new challenge this week.
"Last year Eldora was a lot of fun. I think the fans really enjoy seeing the Truck Series race on dirt, it adds some excitement to the summer stretch. This is Harrison's first race on dirt so we are just going to go out there and do our best and see how he does in practice and qualifying. Harrison is smart and a quick learner, so I am confident Wednesday night will be a fun one to watch,” said Harrison Burton.
"I don't know if any of my dirt track experience from ARCA is going to help me in Eldora. The tracks I've run at, DuQuoin and Springfield, in the ARCA Racing Series are one mile, flat tracks, and Eldora is obviously a short track with some high banking. So, its definitely going to be different, but I am really looking forward to it,” said Grant Enfinger.
Qualifying will be held on Fox Sports 1 at 5:00 p.m. EDT. The heat races will air on Fox Sports 2 at 7:30 p.m. EDT. The main event will air on Fox Business Network beginning at 9:30 p.m. EDT. Motor Racing Network will have radio coverage beginning at 7:30 p.m. EDT. Fans who do not have Fox Business Network, but have Fox Sports 1 will be able to stream the Eldora Dirt Derby on the Fox Sports GO app, depending on if their provider has a contract.