Today’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Fontana: Start time, lineup, TV information and more

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FONTANA, Calif. — The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series completes its three-race western swing with the Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway.

Here are the particulars (all times are ET):

START: American Idol contestants and Big Machine Records founder Scott Borchetta will give the command for drivers to start their engines at 3:37 p.m. ET. The green flag is scheduled for 3:46 p.m.

DISTANCE: The race is scheduled for 200 laps (400 miles) around the 2-mile oval.

PRERACE SCHEDULE: The Sprint Cup garage opens at 9:30 a.m., and the drivers meeting is at 1:30 p.m. Driver introductions begin at 3 p.m.

NATIONAL ANTHEM: It will be performed by American Idol contestants at 3:31 p.m.

TV/RADIO: Fox will broadcast the race, starting with a pre-race show at 3 p.m. Motor Racing Network will broadcast the race on radio and MRN.com with its pre-race show at 2:30 p.m.

FORECAST: The wunderground.com site predicts 72 degrees at race time with a 0% chance of rain.

LAST TIME: Kyle Busch scored his second consecutive victory at Auto Club Speedway, sweeping around Kurt Busch and Tony Stewart into the lead on the final lap for his 29th career win in the Sprint Cup. Kyle Larson finished second.

NEW RIDES: Brett Moffitt will make his second start in the No. 55 Toyota in place of Brian Vickers, who is out indefinitely because of blood clots. Chris Buescher will make his Sprint Cup debut as a result, replacing Moffitt in the No. 34 Ford (whose normal driver, David Ragan, is substituting in the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota for injured Kyle Busch).

STARTING LINEUP: 

Row 1: Kurt Busch, Kevin Harivck
Row 2: Matt Kenseth, David Ragan
Row 3: Kyle Larson, Denny Hamlin
Row 4: Jeff Gordon, Brad Keselowski
Row 5: Ryan Newman, Clint Bowyer
Row 6: Paul Menard, Martin Truex Jr.
Row 7:  Joey Logano, Jimmie Johnson
Row 8: Carl Edwards, Sam Hornish Jr.
Row 9: Dale Earnhardt Jr., A.J. Allmendinger
Row 10: Kasey Kahne, Tony Stewart
Row 11: Austin Dillon, Danica Patrick
Row 12: Aric Almirola, Michael Annett
Row 13: Brian Scott, Jamie McMurray
Row 14: Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Alex Bowman
Row 15: Greg Biffle, Brett Moffitt
Row 16: Justin Allgaier, Cole Whitt
Row 17: Chris Buescher, Jeb Burton
Row 18: Josh Wise, Trevor Bayne
Row 19: Casey Mears, Brendan Gaughan
Row 20: Mike Bliss, Landon Cassill
Row 21: J.J. Yeley, Matt DiBenedetto
Row 22: David Gilliland

Sioux Chief to sponsor ARCA Showdown, East Series to race at Nashville Fairgrounds

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ARCA announced Saturday that Sioux Chief Manufacturing will be the entitlement sponsor of its 10-race ARCA Menards Series Showdown in 2020.

Sioux Chief Manufacturing is a Missouri company that designs and manufactures rough plumbing products, parts, and accessories for residential, commercial, industrial and government applications

Sioux Chief has been involved in ARCA since 2015 as a race event sponsor and special awards program sponsor and sponsored ARCA’s former Short Track Challenge.

As part of the deal, a newly increased point fund, combined with race purses, owner plan, and contingency awards, will offer teams a chance to compete for a share of over $920,000 in posted awards throughout the series.

The Sioux Chief Showdown will bring together the best drivers from the ARCA Menards Series, the ARCA Menards Series East and ARCA Menards Series West, formerly known as the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. Those events, held on oval tracks 1.25-miles in length and under and road courses, offer drivers who may not be able or eligible to run the full 20-race ARCA Menards Series schedule the opportunity to run for a championship. Combined with the overall ARCA Menards Series championship, and the East and West championships, drivers will have four separate championships to compete for in 2020.

The announcement was made at the Performance Racing Industry Trade Show in Indianapolis. Also present was promoter Bob Sargent of Track Enterprises, who announced that the ARCA Menards Series East would compete at Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway on May 2.

The Tennessean reported this week that the Nashville Fairgrounds was negotiating with Sargent to promote at least three races at the short track in 2020. Sargent’s involvement in the track comes after Nashville’s Fair Board voted to terminate its agreement with Formosa Productions to run the track over outstanding debt.

The ARCA Menards Series has competed at the Fairgrounds the last five seasons. The ARCA Menards Series East, formerly known as the K&N Pro Series East, competed there from 2007-08.

GMS Racing reveals full-time driver-crew chief lineup, number assignments

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GMS Racing has announced its full-time driver-crew chief lineup for the 2020 Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series season and number assignments for its trucks:

– Chad Norris has been named crew chief for Brett Moffitt and the No. 23 Chevrolet team. Moffitt drove the No. 24 in his first season with the team. Norris has been with GMS Racing for two years and directed the effort that delivered the team its 2018 Xfinity Series win at Talladega.

– Chad Walter will lead Tyler Ankrum and the No. 26 team. 2020 will be Ankrum’s first season with GMS Racing. Walter served as an engineer for Ankrum this season at DGR-Crosley. Walter has five wins and 42 top fives in 208 Xfinity Series starts as crew chief.

– Kevin “Bono” Manion is paired with Zane Smith on the No. 21 Chevrolet. 2020 will be Smith’s first full-time Trucks season after competing part-time for JR Motorsports in the Xfinity Series. Manion has 24 wins as crew chief across all three national series since 2003. He led Martin Truex Jr. to his two Xfinity Series titles.

– Jeff Stankiewicz will remain as the crew chief for the No. 2 team piloted by Sheldon Creed.

Social Roundup: How NASCAR drivers are spending their offseason

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NASCAR’s Champion’s week is now behind us and we are firmly in the offseason.

Well, sort of.

The NASCAR world never really stops, which is evident simply due to the continued announcements for the 2020 season.

But with Joey Logano testing the Next Gen car at Phoenix earlier this week and Dale Earnhardt Jr. helping clean up North Wilkesboro Speedway for iRacing, it’s been anything but quiet.

Here’s a look at what else happened in the NASCAR community this week.

Someone needs to check in on Jimmie Johnson, he could be in his own version of Mr. Mom.

Chris Buescher is home again.

The 2015 Xfinity Series champion is back at Roush Fenway Racing for the 2020 Cup season and he’s got the firesuits and cars to prove it.

Brad Keselowski recently became father to a second daughter.

He’s now learning some important life lessons.

Former Front Row Motorsports driver Matt Tifft is now off the market after getting married to his fiance, Jordan. Now they’re on their honeymoon.

 

Matt DiBenedetto showed off one of the perks of being a Wood Brothers Racing employee.

Ryan Blaney and Bubba Wallace went somewhere warm to start their holiday.

Joey and Caitlin Gase welcome twin sons

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Xfinity Series driver Joey Gase and his wife Caitlin are now parents to twin boys

The babies were born on Wednesday. Their names are Jace and Carson.

More: Brad and Paige Keselowski welcome second daughter