Atlanta race had most lead changes at track in 11 years

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In 2005, NASCAR introduced loop data to the sport, tracking car positions and data all around tracks and not just at the finish line.

Eleven years later, with the Sprint Cup Series unleashing a new low-downforce package at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Sunday’s race saw the most lead changes at the 1.54-mile track since the new scoring system was introduced.

At the end of the Folds of Honor Quik Trip 500, the lead had changed hands 44 times.

The official box score has 28 lead changes among eight drivers at the start-finish line, the same amount as last year’s race.

As a whole, the 39-car field recorded 3,717 green flag passes on Sunday. That’s the second-highest total at Atlanta Motor Speedway since loop data’s introduction.

Both numbers likely are helped by the race going caution free for the first 210 laps.

“This is real racing,” Carl Edwards said after the race. “We’re driving hard. You can see the guys out here just digging for everything they’re worth. I’m worn out. That’s a tough race and just a lot of fun.”

The most quality passes were made by Dale Earnhardt Jr., who finished the race in second after recording 65 quality passes. Edwards had the second most with 62.

NASCAR’s next stop is Las Vegas Motor Speedway, another 1.5-mile track. The 2015 race there had 3,054 green flag passes among 43 drivers and 18 lead changes at the finish line among nine drivers.