Facts and figures: Sprint Cup history at Auto Club Speedway

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You want facts about this Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway?

We’ve got all the facts you need right here, including overall event information, pole history and track history:

Auto Club 400
Location: Auto Club Speedway
Date: Sunday, March 22, 2015
Starting time: 3:30 p.m. ET
TV: Fox, 3 p.m. ET
Radio: Motor Racing Network, Sirius XM NASCAR Radio Ch. 90
Distance: 200 laps, 400 miles

ACS Notes & Facts – track/event/drivers:

* Kyle Busch is not only the defending race winner, he’s also won the last two Sprint Cup races at ACS.

* However, Busch will not be able to defend those two wins, as he continues to recover from a broken leg and fractured foot suffered in the season-opening Xfinity Series race at Daytona International Speedway.

* Busch is also the youngest winner in ACS history, having won Sept. 4, 2005 at the age of 20 years, four months and two days.

* At the opposite end of the spectrum, NASCAR Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace is the oldest winner at Fontana, having taken the checkered flag on April 29, 2001 at the age of 44 years, eight months and 15 days.

Here’s some of the key event records at ACS:

* Race record: Tony Stewart (160.166 mph, March 25, 2012)

* Qualifying record: Kyle Busch (188.245 mph, Feb. 27, 2005).

* There have been 25 NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Auto Club Speedway, previously known as California Speedway, from 1997 through 2014.

* 14 different drivers have won at Auto Club Speedway. Jimmie Johnson leads all drivers with five wins. Johnson also has the most top-five finishes (12).

* Matt Kenseth has the most top-10 finishes (15).

* 137 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at ACS; 108 in more than one.

* Jeff Gordon leads the series in starts at ACS with 25.

* Joe Nemechek won the inaugural Coors Light pole (1997) with a speed of 183.015 mph (39.341 secs.).

* In addition to having the most wins of any driver (five), Jimmie Johnson also leads the series in runner-up finishes at ACS with five; followed by teammate Jeff Gordon with four.

* Including wins and runner-up finishes, Jimmie Johnson leads the series in top-five finishes at ACS with 12; followed by Jeff Gordon (10), Matt Kenseth (nine), Carl Edwards and Kyle Busch (eight each).

” Matt Kenseth leads the series in top-10 finishes with 15; followed by Jimmie Johnson and Carl Edwards (14 each) and Tony Stewart (13).

* Jimmie Johnson leads the series in average finish at ACS with a 6.650.

* Jimmie Johnson (6.6), Carl Edwards (8.5) and Matt Kenseth (9.8) are the only three active drivers with an average finish in the top 10 at ACS.

* Greg Biffle (April 28, 2002) and J.J. Yeley (Sept. 5, 2004) made their first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career starts at ACS.

* Jimmie Johnson posted his first series career win at Auto Club Speedway on April 28, 2002.

* Jimmie Johnson (fall of 2009 – spring of 2010) and Kyle Busch (2013, 2014) are the only drivers to win consecutive races at Auto Club Speedway.

* 12 of the 14 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers who have won at ACS participated in at least two or more races before visiting Victory Lane. Jeff Gordon (1997 – inaugural event) and Jimmie Johnson (2002) are the only drivers to win at ACS in their first appearance.

* Tony Stewart competed at ACS 18 times before winning in the fall of 2010; the longest span of any of the 14 winners. Only Stewart (18) and Kevin Harvick (17) have made 10 or more attempts before their first win at ACS.

* Dale Earnhardt Jr. leads all active drivers with the most Sprint Cup starts at ACS without visiting Victory Lane (22 times).

* Three reigning Sprint Cup champions have gone on to win at ACS the following season: Tony Stewart (2012), Jeff Gordon (1999) and Jimmie Johnson – the only one to do it multiple times (2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010).

* Two drivers have won at ACS and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship in the same season: Jeff Gordon (1997) and Jimmie Johnson (2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010).

* Two female drivers have competed at ACS in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: Shawna Robinson and Danica Patrick. Robinson first attempted to qualify for the race at ACS on April 29, 2001, but failed to make the event.


ACS Notes & Facts – poles:

* 16 drivers have won poles at Auto Club Speedway, led by Denny Hamlin and Kurt Busch with three each.

* Denny Hamlin (2011, 2012), Kurt Busch (2006 sweep) and Jamie McMurray (2010 sweep) are the three drivers to win consecutive poles at Auto Club Speedway.

* California-native Jimmie Johnson became the first and only driver to win from the pole at Auto Club Speedway in 2008.

* Only two ACS races have been won from the front row both by six-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson, fall of 2008 (pole); and the fall of 2007 (second-place).

* Nine of the 25 (36 percent) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Auto Club Speedway have been won from a top-five starting position.

* 13 of the 25 (52 percent) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Auto Club Speedway have been won from a top-10 starting position.

* Seven of the 24 (28 percent) races have been won from a starting position outside the top 20.

* The deepest in the field that a race winner has started was 31st, by Matt Kenseth in the spring of 2006.

* The most proficient starting position at ACS is pretty random. Three starting positions (third, ninth and 24th) have produced three winners each.

* Three active drivers have posted their first NSCS Coors Light pole at Auto Club Speedway: Carl Edwards (9/4/2005) and Joe Nemechek (6/22/1997). Kyle Busch won his first pole (2/27/05) and first series win (9/4/05) at ACS in 2005

* The defending pole winner is Matt Kenseth, who qualified No. 1 on March 21, 2014 at 187.315 mph.

* The youngest Fontana pole winner is Kyle Busch, who won the pole on Feb. 27, 2005 at the age of 19 years, nine months and 25 days.

* The oldest Fontana pole winner is Mike Skinner, who won the pole on April 30, 2000 at the age of 42 years, 10 months and two days.


ACS Notes & Facts – history:

* Groundbreaking for California Speedway, as Auto Club Speedway was originally known, took place in November 1995.

* The first race at Auto Club Speedway was a NASCAR K&N Pro Series West race won by Ken Schrader on June 21, 1997.

* The first NASCAR Sprint Cup race was held on June 22, 1997 and won by Jeff Gordon.

* September 2004 was the first night race at Auto Club Speedway and that also was the first year both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and NASCAR Nationwide Series ran two races in a season there.

* The track name was changed to Auto Club Speedway (ACS) in February 2008.

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Truck practice report at Miami

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Championship contender Stewart Friesen posted the fastest lap in Friday’s final Gander Outdoors Truck Series practice session at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Friesen led the way with a lap of 165.320 mph. He was followed by Jesse Little (165.239 mph) and Christian Eckes (164.124).

Friesen was the only one of the four championship contenders in the top 10. Matt Crafton was 18th (160.901 mph), Brett Moffitt was 27th (159.250) and Ross Chastain was 28th (159.193).

Truck teams are limited to six sets of tires for today. The track wears tires, bringing speeds down. Teams save their tires for qualifying and the race.

 

Truck qualifying is scheduled for 4:35 p.m. ET today. The race is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET today.

FIRST PRACTICE

Grant Enfinger posted the fastest lap in the first of two practice sessions Friday for the Gander Outdoors Truck Series at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Enfinger paced the field with a lap of 168.010 mph. Next was reigning series champ Brett Moffitt, one of the four championship contenders in tonight’s race, with a lap of 167.639 mph. Austin Hill was third with a lap of 167.162 mph.

Championship contender Ross Chastain ranked fourth (167.141 mph). Moffitt and Chastain were the only title contenders in the top 10. Matt Crafton, seeking his third series crown, was 11th on the speed chart at 165.042 mph. Title contender Stewart Friesen was 13th on the speed chart at 164.404 mph.

Truck teams will have another practice and then qualifying before tonight’s season-ending race.

Friday’s NASCAR schedule at Miami

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The final NASCAR championship weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway kicks off today with the first champion to be crowned in tonight’s season-ending Truck Series race.

The day gets going early with back-to-back Truck Series practices in the morning, followed by two Xfinity Series and two Cup practices, Truck qualifying and then the evening’s main event, the Ford EcoBoost 200.

Stewart Friesen, Ross Chastain, Matt Crafton and defending Truck Series champion Brett Moffitt will battle it out for the championship.

The wunderground.com site forecasts a temperature of 75 degrees, partly cloudy skies and a 14% chance of race for the start of the Truck Series race.

Here’s how today’s schedule shapes up:

(All times are Eastern)

7:30 a.m. – Truck Series garage opens

9:05 – 9:55 a.m. – Truck Series practice (No TV)

10:35 – 11:25 a.m. – Final Truck practice (No TV)

11 a.m. – 9 p.m. – Xfinity garage open

12:30 – 10 p.m. – Cup garage open

2:35 – 3:25 p.m. – Xfinity practice (NBCSN)

3:35 – 4:25 p.m. – Cup practice (NBCSN, Motor Racing Network)

4:35 p.m. – Truck Series qualifying; single truck/one lap (FS1)

5:35 – 6:25 p.m. – Final Xfinity practice (NBCSN)

6:15 p.m. – Truck Series driver-crew chief meeting

6:30 – 7:20 p.m. – Final Cup practice (NBCSN, MRN)

7:30 p.m. – Truck Series driver introductions

8 p.m. – Ford EcoBoost 200; 134 laps/201 miles (FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

Dover President honored as Comcast Community Champion of the Year

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Comcast has announced that Dover International Speedway President & CEO Mike Tatoian as the fifth annual Comcast Community Champion of the Year. Comcast established the prestigious award in 2015 to honor NASCAR industry members for their philanthropic efforts and with this year’s contributions, Comcast has donated more than a half million dollars ($600,000) to charitable organizations in the NASCAR community through the program.

Tatoian has been a staple of the Delaware and mid-Atlantic charitable communities, particularly with local military organizations at Dover (Del.) Air Force Base, since he began his tenure at the “Monster Mile” in 2007. One of his longest commitments has been with United Service Organizations. Established during World War II, the USO supports U.S. service members wherever they are, including on-base, deployed abroad, passing through an airport or in local communities at more than 200 locations around the world.

“We’re all fortunate to be involved in this great sport and privileged to give back as well; the spirit we recognize throughout NASCAR is the same spirit behind our community impact programs at Comcast,”  said Matt Lederer, Comcast Vice President of Brand Partnerships. “It’s an honor to recognize Mike Tatoian as the 2019 Comcast Community Champion of the Year, he has leveraged his platform within the sport to bring awareness to his genuine passion of supporting the military community.”

MORE: A soldier he never knew inspired track president to do more

One particular duty that distinguishes USO Delaware is it’s the only USO in the world that shares the responsibility of bringing home fallen service members, working alongside other units such as the Air Force Mortuary Affairs, Armed Forces Medical Examiner System, the Joint Personal Effects Depot and the Families of the Fallen. For 13 years, Tatoian has assisted USO Delaware with countless programs and currently serves as the Chairman of the Advisory Council for the organization.

Tatoian was chosen by a panel comprised of Comcast and NASCAR executives, as well as defending NASCAR Cup Series champion, Joey Logano, who won the award in 2018. NASCAR on FOX Coordinating Director, Artie Kempner, and NASCAR driver, David Ragan, nominated as finalists for the award, were each awarded $30,000 toward the amazing work they do with Autism Delaware and Shriners Hospital for Children, respectively.

Kempner started Autism Delaware out of his living room in 1998 after his son, Ethan, had been diagnosed with autism a year earlier, and 20+ years later it’s a statewide service agency offering lifespan services, as well as social and recreational program for families in a safe and welcoming environment. Ragan has been dedicated to supporting Shriners Hospital for Children as a part of their ambassador program since 2012. Ragan spends much of his off-time visiting hospitals, fundraising, as well as inviting patients to the race track for once-in-a-lifetime experiences at NASCAR events.

Comcast has a long track record of community service, aiding in the advancement of local organizations, developing programs and partnerships, mobilizing resources to connect people and inspiring positive and substantive change. To learn more about the Comcast Community Champion of the Year Award, please visit ComcastCommunityChampion.com.

Four Cup teams docked practice in Miami

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The Cup cars of Chase Elliott, William Byron, Matt DiBenedetto and Joe Nemechek each will miss 15 minutes of Friday’s opening Cup practice at Homestead-Miami Speedway for failing inspection twice last weekend at ISM Raceway, NASCAR announced.

First Cup practice is scheduled from 3:35 – 4:25 p.m. ET today on NBCSN.

In the Xfinity Series, the cars of Ryan Sieg, Bobby Earnhardt and Brandon Brown will each miss 15 minutes of opening practice for being late to inspection previously.

Xfinity opening practice is scheduled from 2:35 – 3:25 p.m. ET on NBCSN.