Tag Archives: Nationwide Series

2015 NASCAR Xfinity Series Schedule

NASCAR Xfinity Series Logo

The 2015 NASCAR Xfinity Series has some changes over previous year. The biggest change is that the title sponsorship is no longer Nationwide Insurance. The Series is now the Xfinity Series. Other than the title sponsor change there are no major changes to the schedule other than date changes due to the dates of major holidays.  There is a new TV Contract with Fox and NBC sharing the season.

2015 NASCAR XFINITY SERIES SCHEDULE
Date Site Network
2/21 Daytona International Speedway FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM
2/28 Atlanta Motor Speedway FOX Sports 1, PRN, SiriusXM
3/7 Las Vegas Motor Speedway FOX Sports 1, PRN, SiriusXM
3/14 Phoenix International Raceway FOX, MRN, SiriusXM
3/21 Auto Club Speedway FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM
4/10 Texas Motor Speedway FOX Sports 1, PRN, SiriusXM
4/18 Bristol Motor Speedway FOX Sports 1, PRN, SiriusXM
4/24 Richmond International Raceway FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM
5/2 Talladega Superspeedway FOX, MRN, SiriusXM
5/17 Iowa Speedway FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM
5/23 Charlotte Motor Speedway FOX, PRN, SiriusXM
5/30 Dover International Speedway FOX, MRN, SiriusXM
6/13 Michigan International Speedway FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM
6/20 Chicagoland Speedway FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM
7/4 Daytona International Speedway NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM
7/10 Kentucky Speedway NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM
7/18 New Hampshire Motor Speedway NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM
7/25 Indianapolis Motor Speedway NBC, IMS, SiriusXM
8/1 Iowa Speedway NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM
8/8 Watkins Glen International NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM
8/15 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM
8/21 Bristol Motor Speedway NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM
8/29 Road America NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM
9/5 Darlington Raceway NBC, MRN, SiriusXM
9/11 Richmond International Raceway NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM
9/19 Chicagoland Speedway NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM
9/26 Kentucky Speedway NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM
10/3 Dover International Speedway NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM
10/9 Charlotte Motor Speedway NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM
10/17 Kansas Speedway NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM
11/7 Texas Motor Speedway NBC, PRN, SiriusXM
11/14 Phoenix International Raceway NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM
11/21 Homestead-Miami Speedway NBC, MRN, SiriusXM
SCHEDULE SUBJECT TO CHANGE

 

Kevin Harvick uses Strategy to Win the Freaky Fast 300 at Chicagoland

Kevin Harvick won the NASCAR Nationwide Series Freaky Fast 300 at Chicagoland Speedway by better pit strategy than Kyle Busch.

Brian Scott won the Coors Light Pole Award and led the field to the green flag in Jimmy John’s Freaky Fast 300 Powered by Coca-Cola. He only led the first five laps then it became the Kyle Busch show.

From the fifth lap until lap 154 of 200 Kyle Busch controlled the race only giving up the lead during pit stops. Each and every restart he held off the challengers including Kevin Harvick from taking the lead.

On lap 153 the number 51 of Jeremy Clements lost an engine and put oil down on the track. Everyone pitted for tires and fuel. Busch’s team opted for four tires while some cars stayed out and other took two tires. Busch found himself sixteenth at the restart on lap 159.

The rest of the field battled on the restart with Kevin Harvick driver of the No. 5 Jimmy John’s car prevailed two laps later and never lost the lead.

On lap 166 Kyle Busch’s teammate, Denny Hamlin lost an engine and put down lots of oil on the track. Busch had already driver up to eighth and appeared to be on his way to taking back the race that would most surely be his to win. It didn’t happen. Busch lead 141 laps of 200.

The race restarted on lap 173 with Kevin Harvick staying out. Kyle Busch drove his No. 54 car hard up to third place but could not pass Kyle Larson in the No. 42 when he finally got to him.

Harvick said, “This Guy (Ernie Cope No. 5 Crew Chief) is the one who won the race today. He made a great call with two tires and the 54 got buried in the field and it felt like at that particular point it was our race to lose and our car ran faster on two tires than it did on four. Just really excited and I feel like I learned a lot today just looking forward to tomorrow as well.

Kyle Larson was second followed by Kyle Bush, Ryan Blaney and Trevor Bayne.

The highest finishing rookie was Ty Dillon. Chase Elliott finished tenth and retains the series points lead over Regan Smith by 18 points.

Brian Berg Jr. is a NASCAR writer for BehindPitRow.com.

Feature Photo Credit:  301538 Nick Laham/Getty Images

Brian Scott won the Coors Light Pole Award at Chicagoland Speedway

Brian Scott was the fastest in qualifying and will lead the field to green Saturday September 13th in the NASCAR Nationwide Series Jimmy John’s Freaky Fast 300 Powered by Coca-Cola at Chicagoland Speedway.

The Nationwide series had only one practice on Friday due to the weather. Brian Scott wasn’t the fastest in practice but was the fourth fastest with a speed of 177.206 MPH. His team was able to adjust on the car and improve on that greatly. Scott was able to put down a lap of 181.409 MPH in order to capture the Coors Light Pole Award.

In the first round of qualifying, Ty Dillon No. 3, Kevin Harvick No. 5, Denny Hamlin No. 20 and Kyle Busch No 54 were late in getting through technical inspection. All except Hamlin were able to lay down fast laps and make it to the last round in qualifying. Denny Hamlin ended up qualifying 20th in the second Round.

In the first round Scott drove the No. 2 RCR Shore Lodge Chevrolet to ninth at 178.483 MPH. He improved in the second round to third at 181.305 MPH saving his best for the Round. This was Scott’s fifth pole in 168 NASCAR Nationwide Series Starts and his third at the Chicagoland Speedway.

The rest of the top five are Ryan Blaney No 22, Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott No 9 and Kyle Larson No 42. Chase Elliott, the current series point’s leader was the highest qualifying rookie.

Carl Long, Mike Harmon, and Morgan Shepard did not qualify and will not race.

If you cannot get to Chicagoland Speedway for the Jimmy John’s Freaky Fast 300, it will be broadcast on ESPN2 starting at 3:30PM ET.

Brian Berg Jr. is a NASCAR writer for BehindPitRow.com.

Feature Photo Credit:  Emmett Bird

The Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Starts at Chicagoland

NASCAR doesn’t visit the Chicago area often. This weekend all three of the top NASCAR series comes to Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet Illinois for three days of racing.

Friday night, the Camping World Truck Series races under the lights for the Lucas Oil 225. The weather is expected to be cold in Joliet at race time but with no threat of rain it will be perfect for racing. In fact because of the cold weather the speeds will be some of the fastest the Truck Series has run there. Wisconsin native, Johnny Sauter followed by perennial Truck Driver Matt Crafton are at the top of the standings and are expected to run well. They have their work cut out for them as Kyle Busch and teammate Darrell Wallace Jr., who have won half the races this season, will both be in the race.

Saturday afternoon, the Nationwide Series takes to the track for the Jimmy John’s Freaky Fast 300 Powered By Coca-Cola. Rookie driver and three time winner, Chase Elliott leads the standings and is expected to contend for the win. He also has his work cut out for him because many Sprint Cup regular drivers are interloping in this Series because they are at the same track. Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch have won seven races combined in this series out of 25 races.

Sunday afternoon in the MyAFibStory.com 400, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series has the spot light nationwide because this race is the start to the prestigious Chase for the Sprint Cup. This year sixteen drivers are contending for the Championship. In order of their seeding, Brad Keselowski, Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson, Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick, Carl Edwards, Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin, Kurt Busch, Kasey Kahne, Aric Almirola, A.J. Allmendinger, Matt Kenseth, and Ryan Newman. The first seven of these drivers have won multiple races this season and stand to figure prominently at Chicagoland.

One cannot win the Championship at Chicagoland but one can lose it. This year four drivers will be eliminated from contention after the third race in the Chase. Essentially if any one of the sixteen drivers does not run well at Chicagoland they risk certain elimination after the Series leaves Dover Delaware.

Look for many show cars and driver appearances around the Chicago area prior to the events at the speedway in Joliet. NASCAR will be everywhere.

The weather is expected to be cool and dry which should lead to some of the fastest racing the Chicagoland Speedway has ever seen. Tickets are still available. Visit http://www.chicagolandspeedway.com to find out more.

Brian Berg Jr. is a NASCAR writer for BehindPitRow.com.

Feature Photo Credit: 290409 Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images

 

 

Why I Love NASCAR

Ever since I became more than a casual NASCAR fan, when it comes up in conversation people ask “How can you watch those cars just going around in circles?” Since I started writing about NASCAR that same comment comes up more and more. Let me tell you why it’s more than just cars going around in circles and why I love NASCAR.

It starts innocently enough, perhaps an interest in cars or maybe a friend who takes you to a track somewhere. You go and watch “Those cars going round in circles”. At this point they are right; it is simply cars going round in circles—but  then you pick a driver.

Whether it is the color of the car, the sponsor, or you heard the name before, you focus in on one particular car and driver. This is a game changer. You notice where they start the race. You notice where they run at various times during the race. You also notice how they finish, but along the way you notice other things.

During pit stops sometimes your new driver gets four tires and fuel but loses positions relative to where they were running before the pit stop. Sometimes they get two tires and fuel and gain positions relative to where they were running before the pit stop. Sometimes it’s hopeless no matter what they do. Sometimes they are so fast on the track that what they do on the pit stop hardly matters. One thing is certain, there is more to this than just going round in circles.

Watching more than one driver and team on the track becomes a mind blowing experience. Keeping track of the same puts you into the game much like making note of the different types of plays in football.

While watching the drivers race one another it is apparent that those running up front are not necessarily the fastest and those in the back are not the slowest. If there is a long enough green flag while racing, the cream always rises to the top. Watching this play out is fascinating. Sometimes though, the cream is already at the top and not much changes. It is different each and every week.

Watching the pit stops and the different adjustments the teams make on the cars is also interesting. What really is fascinating is how those changes affect the car and the gains that can be made on the track. It is incredible when a driver and team take a car that is obviously junk at the beginning of a long race and adjust it to bring in a great finish. It is even better if they win.

If you pay attention, there is so much more that goes into getting these cars, drivers, and teams to compete at this level. That is why I love NASCAR.

Brian Berg Jr. is a NASCAR writer for BehindPitRow.com.

Feature Photo Credit: 288276 Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images