Phoenix International Raceway

Phoenix Raceway will move start/finish line as part of changes

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Phoenix Raceway confirmed Monday that it will move its start/finish line to Turn 2, just before the track’s dog leg, as part of renovations that will be completed in November 2018.

NBC Sports first reported in November about plans for the track to move its start/finish line to Turn 2.

“It will make it more exciting,” Joey Logano said of the new start/finish location. “There are going to be high-energy restarts.”

That change is just part of a $178 million redevelopment project by International Speedway Corp. that will include new seating areas, escalators, elevators and additional restrooms for fans. Also being added are new suites and better in-seat Wi-Fi capability and a new tunnel to the infield for fans. 

Phoenix also is redesigning its infield, creating a fan zone while moving victory lane and the garages. Pit road will be moved in closer to the infield in Turns 1 and 2.

“This is a great day for ISC and Phoenix Raceway, but more importantly, for racing fans in the state of Arizona and around the world,” ISC Chief Executive Officer Lesa France Kennedy said in a statement. “A project of this magnitude is monumental for our company as we get to work enhancing the experience of the great fans who love to watch our races in Phoenix and enjoy this beautiful area. Having Phoenix Raceway within our prestigious stable of venues always has been a tremendous asset and source of pride for us. We are thrilled to create a best-in-class facility in Phoenix, and we’re confident it will grow the fan base here and further serve as a destination track for motorsports fans everywhere.”

Also, in paperwork filed with International Speedway Corp.’s 2016 Annual Report, the company lists Phoenix’s spring 2018 NASCAR race weekend as March 16-18 and the track’s 2018 IndyCar race weekend as April 13-14.

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A look at some of the changes at Phoenix International Raceway. (Courtesy Phoenix International Raceway).

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Kyle Busch wins pole for Truck Series race at Atlanta

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Kyle Busch won the pole for Saturday’s Camping World Truck Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway, his second Truck Series pole at the track.

Driving his No 4. Toyota, Busch put down a top speed of 179.743 mph.

Matt Crafton qualified second with a speed of 179.220 mph.

“My lap was pretty good, certainly felt more stuck (to the track) the first time around than the second time around,” Busch told Fox Sports 1. “We even picked up a little bit of time on that second one. … We were really, really tight here last year and made some good changes to it through the offseason with notes and things and coming back here better prepared.”

The top five is completed by Noah Gragson (179.214), Spencer Davis (178.862) and Justin Haley (178.775).

Gragson and Davis give Kyle Busch Motorsports three of the first four starting spots.

Johnny Sauter, who won last week at Daytona, will start ninth.

Busch’s pole is his second of the weekend. He also won the pole for Sunday’s Cup Series race.

The Active Pest Control 200 begins at 4:30 p.m. ET on FS1.

Click here for the starting lineup.

Christopher Bell on Xfinity pole at Atlanta

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HAMPTON, Georgia — Rookie Christopher Bell qualified first for Saturday’s Rinnai 250 at Atlanta Motor Speedway with a 181.176-mph lap in his No. 20 Toyota.

it’s the second pole in 10 starts for the Joe Gibbs Racing driver.

Joey Logano was second in his No. 22 Ford, followed by John Hunter Nemechek, Cole Custer and Kevin Harvick.

Click here for the Xfinity Series qualifying results and click here for the Xfinity lineup by row.

The Xfinity race will start at 2:16 p.m. ET, starting a doubleheader with the truck series at Atlanta.

Sunday’s Atlanta race moved to 1:06 p.m. ET start with threat of weather

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HAMPTON, Georgia – The threat of inclement weather has moved up the start of Sunday’s Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway by an hour.

NASCAR announced Saturday morning that the green flag will fall on the second race of the 2018 season at 1:06 p.m. ET.

Races become official after the second stage. The second stage of Sunday’s 500-mile race will end on Lap 170 of 325.

The wunderground.com site calls for an 80 percent chance of rain Sunday with the forecast worsening from 10 a.m.

Martin Truex Jr., Jimmie Johnson top list of drivers docked practice

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HAMPTON, Georgia — Martin Truex Jr. and Jimmie Johnson both will be held during the final Cup Series practice Saturday at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Because his No. 78 Toyota failed to clear prequalifying inspection three times Friday, Truex will miss the final 30 minutes of the 80-minute session that will begin at noon ET. Johnson’s No. 48 Chevrolet will be out for the last 15 minutes because it failed the new Optical Scanning Station twice.

Harrison Rhodes also will miss 15 minutes for failing inspection twice. Jeffrey Earnhardt, Gray Gaulding Jr., Michael McDowell and Cole Whitt each will miss 15 minutes because they were late to qualifying inspection.

NASCAR changed its policy on how practice holds will be conducted this season. Instead of serving the penalty in the pits at the start of the session, drivers will park their cars for the length of the penalty up until the end of the session.