Cup

By Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service AVONDALE, Ariz. — Denny Hamlin was convinced he had to improve his performance at Phoenix Raceway, and on Saturday afternoon, he took the first step in that direction. Touring the one-mile track in 27.138 seconds (132.655 seconds) in the final round of qualifying, Hamlin put his No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota on the pole for Sunday’s Shriners Children’s 500 (3:30 p.m. ET on FOX, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). Hamlin, who hasn’t won at Phoenix since 2019, beat JGR teammate Ty Gibbs (132.227Read More
By Luis Torres, Staff Writer “This Mustang Dark Horse is bitchin’!” Noah Gragson didn’t mince any words on how he felt about bringing home a superb sixth-place finish in Sunday’s Pennzoil 400 presented by Jiffy Lube at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. In a race where the four-car organization remained quiet or faltered, Gragson and his No. 10 squad put together a strong showing. Notably, Gragson’s charge towards his third career top-10 finish shined bright in the final 27 green flag laps where he was in a battle for a top-five finish,Read More
By Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service LAS VEGAS — Based on the box score alone, you might think Kyle Larson dominated Sunday’s Pennzoil 400 NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.  You’d be wrong.  Yes, Larson led 181 of 267 laps at the 1.5-mile track. Kyle Busch led the second-most—18. And, yes, Larson swept the first two stages and took the checkered flag to secure his third victory at Las Vegas, tying Joey Logano and Brad Keselowski for most among full-time active Cup drivers.  The truth is thatRead More
By Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service LAS VEGAS — For the second NASCAR Cup Series race this young season, Joey Logano will start on the pole. Speeding around windswept Las Vegas Motor Speedway in 29.291 seconds (184.357 mph) in the final round of Saturday’s time trials, Logano will occupy the top spot in the grid for Sunday’s Pennzoil 400 (3:30 p.m. ET on FOX, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). A three-time winner at the 1.5-mile intermediate speedway—tied with Brad Keselowski for most among full-time active drivers—Logano beat Hendrick Motorsports driverRead More
By David Morgan, Associate Editor Atlanta Motor Speedway is back. In the early 2000’s, the 1.5-mile quad-oval earned a reputation for delivering photo finishes with three of the closest finishes in NASCAR Cup Series coming over a span from 2000 to 2005. However, as the pavement aged, the track’s tendency for those types of finishes faded with it. Enter the 2022 season and a reconfiguration masterminded by Speedway Motorsports CEO Marcus Smith, which ramped up the banking in the turns and narrowed the racing surface to transform the track into aRead More
By Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service HAMPTON, Ga. — It was a race of remarkable ebb and flow. It was race of breathtaking four-wide action into corners not built to accommodate such derring-do. And it was totally appropriate that Sunday’s Ambetter Health 400 NASCAR Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway would end in a three-wide photo finish, with Trackhouse Racing’s Daniel Suárez eking out a victory over Ryan Blaney by what looked to be an inch or two at the finish line. NASCAR timing and scoring showed Suárez aheadRead More
By Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service HAMPTON, Ga. – Michael McDowell and Joey Logano performed their own version of “Trading Places” during NASCAR Cup Series time trials on Saturday at Atlanta Motor Speedway. After finishing second to Logano in qualifying for the season-opening DAYTONA 500, McDowell will start his 467th Cup race from a position he has never occupied before—first on the grid—with Logano beside him in second. Having won the first Busch Light Pole Award of his career, McDowell will lead the field to green in Sunday’s Ambetter HealthRead More
By David Morgan, Associate Editor After a drenching weekend in Daytona, the NASCAR Cup Series sticks around on the East Coast as it heads to Atlanta Motor Speedway for the second superspeedway race of the season – Sunday’s Ambetter Health 400. Atlanta’s aging racing surface, which had been in place since 1997, held together as long as possible, but the 260 laps around the 1.5-mile track in July 2021 were the last on that particular surface as the track underwent a repave and reconfiguration for the 2022 season. The 24-degree bankingRead More
By Luis Torres, Staff Writer The Daytona 500 can be a game of inches. Sometimes it’ll lead to racing glory like William Byron or an absolute gut-punch like his Hendrick Motorsports teammate Alex Bowman, who finished second in Monday’s race. All as a result of coming up just short of besting Byron when the caution came out. Due to the runner-up finish, Bowman’s winless streak extends to 67 races dating back to Martinsville in fall 2021. Despite the clear disappointment of losing out on bringing HMS its first 500 win sinceRead More