Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Go Bowling 400
Kansas Speedway Distance: 400.5 miles (267 laps)
Saturday, May 13 7:30 p.m. ET TV: FS1, 7 p.m. ET Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Stage 1 (Ends on lap 80), Stage 2 (Ends on lap 160), Final Stage (Ends on lap 267)
NASCAR XFINITY Series Hisense 4K TV 300
Charlotte Motor Speedway Distance: 300 miles (200 laps)
Saturday, May 27 1 p.m. ET TV: FS1, 12:30 p.m. ET Radio: PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Stage 1 (Ends on lap 45), Stage 2 (Ends on lap 90), Final Stage (Ends on lap 200)
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Toyota Tundra 250
Kansas Speedway Distance: 250.5 miles (167 laps)
Friday, May 12 8:30 p.m. ET TV: FS1, 8 p.m. ET Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Stage 1 (Ends on lap 40), Stage 2 (Ends on lap 80), Final Stage (Ends on lap 167)
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
‘Dega Delight: Stenhouse Parks It In Victory Lane For First Career Win
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. earned his first career victory in his 158th start on Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway. The 29-year-old Roush Fenway Racing driver shoved Kyle Busch on the final lap then veered to pass him for the lead, before speeding away from the field to the win. The checkered flag was the first for Roush Fenway Racing since Carl Edwards won at Sonoma on June 22, 2014. Stenhouse, 29, currently sits 12th in the points standings on the strength of his victory, three top fives and five tops 10s through the first 10 races. He is on pace to shatter his career highs in top fives (four) and top 10s (six), both set last season. The Mississippi native will attempt to keep the momentum going in Saturday’s Go Bowling 400 at Kansas Speedway (7:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) where he has a career high finish of 11th (2013).
Busch Back To Defend Spring Kansas Victory
After failing to hold on for the victory at Talladega, and eventually finishing third, Kyle Busch will attempt to defend his victory in the Kansas spring race on Saturday. Last spring’s win was the first for Busch at the midwest track. In 17 starts there, he also claims four top fives, six top 10s and an 18.4 average finish. The No. 18 Toyota driver struggled at Kansas early in his career, but seems to have figured it out lately. He has logged a top-five finish in his last four starts there. The 2015 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion currently ranks 10th in the series standings – 151 points behind leader Kyle Larson. Busch has three top-five and four top-10 finishes in 10 starts this season.
Logano Looks To Continue Strong Performance In The Jayhawk State
Kyle Busch isn’t the only driver who’s turned around his early-career struggles at Kansas. Joey Logano has, too. Logano failed to finish better than 15th in his first eight Kansas starts, but has placed in the top five in six of his last seven starts in the Jayhawk State, including two wins. The Team Penske driver has led at least one lap in his last seven Kansas starts for a total of 294. Logano currently sits sixth in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series standings, 110 points behind leader Kyle Larson. On the season, he has one win, six top fives and eight top 10s.
Johnson Ready For Another Win At Kansas
Jimmie Johnson will go for his third win in five races when he takes the wheel for Saturday’s Go Bowling 400 at Kansas Speedway – a track where he is tied with Jeff Gordon for the wins lead with three. The No. 48 Chevrolet driver also boasts nine top fives, 17 top 10s and an 8.9 average finish at the 1.5-mile track.
He enters Saturday’s race coming off an eighth-place showing at Talladega.
Johnson currently sits ninth in the points standings, 123 markers behind leader Kyle Larson. He ranks tied for second with Martin Truex Jr. in playoff points with 10. 1.5-Mile Maven: Harvick Paces Drivers In Laps Led At Intermediate Tracks Since 2014 ince the start of the 2014 season, Kevin Harvick paces all Monster Energy Series drivers with 2,112 laps led at intermediate tracks. He is followed by Martin Truex Jr. (1,354), Brad Keselowski (1,286), Joey Logano (1,246) and Jimmie Johnson (1,149). Kyle Busch (680), Matt Kenseth (615), Jeff Gordon (422), Kurt Busch (364) and Carl Edwards (342) round out the top 10. Still in search of his first win of 2017, Harvick gets to head to 1.5-mile Kansas Speedway for Saturday’s Go Bowling 400. Harvick has visited Victory Lane at Kansas twice, including last fall. He also claims six top fives, 11 top 10s and a 10.4 average finish there. In his last seven races at Kansas, the Stewart-Haas Racing driver has finished second or better five times.
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, Etc.
Kansas City Chiefs Derrick Johnson To Serve As Honorary Pace Car Driver: Four-time Pro Bowl linebacker Derrick Johnson of the Kansas City Chiefs will serve as the honorary pace car driver for Saturday’s Go Bowling 400. Johnson is the all-time leading tackler in Chiefs franchise history.
NASCAR XFINITY Series
Front Nine: JR Motorsports Holds Top Three Spots In XFINITY Standings
Following the first nine races of the NASCAR XFINITY Series 2017 season, JR Motorsport’s drivers hold the top three positions in in the driver standings – veteran Elliott Sadler is the series leader, followed by Justin Allgaier (-29) in second and Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate William Byron (-49) in third. Currently, the JRM drivers are 17 points ahead of their nearest competitor – Roush Fenway Racing’s Darrell Wallace Jr. – in fourth. This is the first season in series history an organization has held the top three spots in the series standings.
Series standings leader Elliott Sadler has yet to win this season, but continues to eat up stage points by the masses. In nine starts this season, he has posted four top fives and a series leading eight top 10s. His average finish his season is a solid 8.0. He has held the points lead since Atlanta, the second race of the season. At this moment, the driver who looks to give Sadler the hardest time this season at securing the title is his teammate Justin Allgaier. The Illinois native is having one of the best starts to a season of his career. Through the first nine races he has posted one win (Phoenix), three top fives, five top 10s and an average finish of 12.3. Plus, he has won two Dash 4 Cash checks for $100,000 each.
William Byron might be a rookie this season, but he hasn’t driven like one these first nine races. The 19-year-old from Charlotte, North Carolina, is currently third in the series driver standings after posting two top fives and five top 10s. His average finish this season is 13.8.
Unfortunately, the NASCAR XFINITY Series will be off the next two weekends as the teams regroup and will return to action on May 27th at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the Hisense 4K TV 300 (on FS1 at 1 p.m. ET). That race will kick-off an 18-week stretch of racing. The next off week won’t be until after series comes back to Charlotte in October.
Consistency Is Showing Dividends For Roush Fenway Racing’s Darrell Wallace Jr.
With the second-most NASCAR XFINITY Series top-10 finishes (six) through the first nine races of the season, Roush Fenway Racing’s Darrell Wallace Jr. is fourth in points, just 17 markers back from third-place William Byron. In one of his best starts to a season, Wallace has posted an average finish of 12.8. His six top 10s this season were all sixth-place finishes; five of which he posted consecutively. Wallace has been on a mission in 2017. Following the season-opener at Daytona he was 27th in points, and over the last eight races he has gained 23 spots to move up to fourth in the driver standings, despite two DNFs. Wallace’s ascension in the points might continue when the series gets to Charlotte. He has made four starts at CMS, posting one top five, two top 10s and an average finish of 15.0.
An Off-Week Look At The NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff Picture
With the first nine NASCAR XFINITY Series races in the books, the first quarter of the season, the playoff picture is starting to take shape. Here is a quick glance as to who would be in position to qualify for the playoffs:
12 drivers will make the playoffs following the 26th race of the regular season at Chicagoland Speedway, currently two title-contending drivers are qualifying on wins and hold the top two seeds heading into this year’s post-season – Justin Allgaier and Ryan Reed. Allgaier holds the top seed because at this point in the season he has more playoff points (seven) than Reed (five).
Sitting in the third seed at the moment is the current regular season points leader Elliott Sadler, who with his two playoff points has an advantage over his teammate and fourth seed William Byron and the fifth seed Daniel Hemric, both of whom only have one stage win playoff point.
The remaining seven drivers have yet to win a race or get a stage win, and therefore have no playoff points and would be seeded by their regular season points – 6. Darrell Wallace Jr., 7. Michael Annett, 8. Matt Tifft, 9. Blake Koch, 10. Brennan Poole, 11. Dakoda Armstrong, 12. Cole Custer.
This season’s playoff picture currently includes four Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidates (Byron, Hemric, Tifft, Custer), and eight different organizations – JR Motorsports, Roush Fenway Racing, Richard Childress Racing, Joe Gibbs Racing, Kaulig Racing, Chip Ganassi Racing, JGL Racing and Stewart-Haas Racing.
NASCAR XFINITY Series, Etc.:
Ross Chastain Wants To Go Truckin’: Florida native and NASCAR XFINITY Series championship contender Ross Chastain will be attempting to compete this weekend at Kansas Speedway in the Toyota Tundra 50 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race (on FS1 at 8 p.m. ET). Chastain will be driving for owner Jeff Bolen with crew chief Paul Clapprood in the No. 66 Bolen Motorsports Chevrolet Silverado. XFINITY Series In Kansas: Though the series will not be competing this weekend at Kansas, the NASCAR XFINITY Series has competed in the state of Kansas 16 times. All 16 races were held at Kansas Speedway. The first NXS race in the state of Kansas was on Sept. 29, 2001 and the event was won by former series champion Jeff Green (Ford). Kansas Drivers In The XFINITY Series: Only six drivers with their home state recorded as Kansas have competed in at least one NASCAR XFINITY Series race – Clint Bowyer (Emporia; 181 starts), Jennifer Jo Cobb (Kansas City; 29 starts), Chase Austin (Eudora; six starts), Rick Beebe (Shawnee; two starts), Ryck Sanders (Leawood; two starts) and Randy Briggs (Kansas City; one start).
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Rock Chalk Truck!
Following a six-week break, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series picks back up Friday night with the Toyota Tundra 250 at Kansas Speedway (8:30 p.m. ET on FS1).
2016 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award winner William Byron is the defending race winner.
The New Kansas City Royal
Kyle Busch Motorsports driver Christopher Bell heads to Kansas looking to recapture the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series points lead and win his second race of 2017. In one career race at Kansas (2016), Bell had a strong showing – finishing fourth after starting fifth. He ran 100 percent of his laps in that race in the top 15, which resulted in a driver rating of 112.1 at Kansas. Bell currently trails NASCAR Camping World Truck Series points leader and defending series champion Johnny Sauter by four points. He won his first race of the 2017 season at Atlanta Motor Speedway and has two stage wins so far this season.
The Kansas City Chief: Matt Crafton
Two-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Matt Crafton is the chief of Kansas Speedway. In 16 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts at Kansas, Crafton has two wins, five top fives and eight top 10s. He’s finished outside the top-25 only once (2005) and has four-consecutive top-two finishes.
Crafton also owns multiple Kansas Speedway track records:
Most Wins: 2
Most Races: 16
Most Top Fives: 5
Most Top 10s: 8
Most Lead Lap Finishes: 10
Most Laps Completed: 2,576
Sauter Hoping To Secure First Win At Kansas
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series points leader and defending champion Johnny Sauter is looking for his first win of the 2017 season at Kansas Speedway. Sauter has historically ran well at Kansas, as he has one career win (2010), four top fives and five top 10s. He has an average finish at Kansas of 10.1. The No. 21 GMS Racing driver has 121 laps led at Kansas – good for the most among NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers. Since 2009, Sauter has 73 fastest laps at Kansas – which is also the most among NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers in that span. In eight career starts at Kansas Speedway, Sauter has never finished outside the top 25.
Toyota’s New Motto? Let’s Go Places And Win NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Races… At Kansas A Toyota driver has won the last four NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races at Kansas Speedway.
2016 Sunoco Rookie of the Year winner William Byron won last season, two-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Champion Matt Crafton won in both 2015 and 2013, and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team owner Kyle Busch won in 2014. There have been 16 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races at Kansas Speedway and each NASCAR Camping World Truck Series manufacturer has multiple wins at the track.
Chevrolet and Toyota are tied with six wins each, while Ford has four wins.
First Timers At Kansas
There are 10 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers making their track debut at Kansas Speedway in Friday’s Toyota Tundra 250. There are six Sunoco Rookie of the Year contenders: Chase Briscoe, Austin Cindric, Grant Enfinger, Stewart Friesen, Noah Gragson and Kaz Grala. There are four other NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers making their track debut this week including Austin Hill, Brett Moffitt, Todd Peck and Regan Smith. There have been two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers that have won their first race at Kansas Speedway; William Byron (05/06/2016) and James Buescher (04/21/2012).
There have been two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers that have won their first pole at this track; John Wes Townley (05/06/2016) and Tim George Jr. (04/21/2012).
Changing It Up
There have been three different race winners in the last three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races at Kansas Speedway. In 16 total NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races, there has been only one repeat winner – Matt Crafton (2015, 2013).
In last season’s Toyota Tundra 250, the race produced the most lead changes (19) in any NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Kansas Speedway.
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Etc.:
Kyle Busch Entered For NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Race at Kansas: Kyle Busch Motorsports owner Kyle Busch will run the No. 51 Toyota in Friday’s Toyota Tundra 250 at Kansas Speedway. In three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races at Kansas, Busch has won once (2014) and has two top 10s with 115 laps led. There’s No Place Like Home: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Jennifer Jo Cobb will be racing at her hometown track (Kansas Speedway) Friday night. Cobb’s hometown is Kansas City, Kansas, and she has five consecutive top-25 finishes at Kansas Speedway.
Where History Began: Last season, William Byron won his first career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Kansas Speedway in the Toyota Tundra 250. The win was the start of a historic rookie season for Byron as he would go on to win six more races – breaking the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series rookie wins record set by Kurt Busch.
Graphics & Photos Courtesy of NASCAR