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NASCAR’s Next Generation: Q&A with Tyler Dippel

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Have you ever spent a day throwing up what felt like 10 times and then gone to work?

Tyler Dippel has.

That was the case Sept. 17 when Dippel, a rookie in the K&N Pro Series East, found himself in the infield care center at New Jersey Motorsports Park, a road course in Millville, New Jersey. The 16-year-old driver from Walkill, New York, had spent the day emptying his stomach thanks to a bad case of the flu.

“It was rough,” Dippel told NBC Sports. “I just had to fight through it because we were still third in points.”

Dippel was given three bags of IV fluids and nausea medicine before he climbed into his No. 38 Chevrolet for HScott Motorsports for the 55-lap race, which he would finish seventh.

“They had a substitute ready in case I got sick inside the car or something, but I wasn’t going to get out of the car unless I was blacking out or throwing up in my helmet,” Dippel said. “I was just going to muscle through the pain.”

And there’s been a fair amount of physical pain in Dippel’s career. Last year, while preparing to unload a car at a dirt track, a winch failed and the door to his trailer fell on Dippel. His pelvis broke in five places.

“It was not like any pain (I’ve had) before,” Dippel said. “I don’t really remember too much about it because the pain was so great, I really wasn’t with it all.”

Dippel, the son of a former professional Motocross racer, spent three nights in the hospital before being bedridden for three weeks. There was no surgery needed and he was only out of a cockpit for eight weeks.

“I got really lucky,” Dippel said. “The bones were all broken, but they were still all in alignment with each other. So I didn’t have to wear a cast. So my body didn’t really get a stiffness from being in a cast.”

Those weren’t his first broken bones. At 12, Dippel broke a tibia and a fibula after flipping a four-wheeler. And years before that, a dirt bike accident resulted in a collarbone injury that led to his parents encouraging him to take up auto racing.

But to keep from receiving further injuries, maybe Dippel should be in a cockpit at all times.

“Yeah, in a five-point harness,” Dippel says with a laugh.

Dippel, who has scored the most points this season among all Rookie of the Year candidates in the K&N East, won in his second start at Mobile International Speedway. In May, Dippel was made part of the 2016-17 NASCAR Next class.

The following Q&A has been edited and condensed.

NBC SPORTS: As a 16-year-old driver, what do you look for in a team aside from it being successful consistently?

Dippel: Probably a real good crew, just having a good relationship with the crew to mesh together. If everyone’s having fun and working well together, I think that’s partially what makes the team successful, too.

NBC SPORTS: At what point this year did you feel your team was jelling at 100 percent?

Dippel: We started jelling from the first race. I think we had an (eighth) place the first race and we ended up winning the second race of the season. We jelled pretty quick I thought. We had a little bit of bad luck in the middle season, blew a motor, blew a (transmission), had a bunch of flat tires, just a couple of things that didn’t go our way, but we’ve always been engaged.

NBC Sports: What’s your earliest memory of racing?

Dippel: Probably when I got my first race car when I was 8 years old for Christmas. It was a slingshot, a little bit bigger than a go-kart, kind of like a scaled down Northeast Dirt Modified. They have the same motor that a Bandelero has and it’s just a dirt car pretty much.

NBC Sports: What’s the  best race you’ve been in or ever watched?

Dippel: Probably a Super Dirt Car Series race at the Dirt Track at Charlotte. That race was just so fun, there’s a big cushion right against the wall and you had to be inches from the wall, just sideways. There were guys on the bottom and there were lead changes, slide jobs going left and right. I was leading for most of the race and unfortunately jumped the cushion on the last lap and gave it up. We still had a really good run there.

NBC Sports: What do you consider your theme song?

Dippel: Empire State of Mind by Jay Z

NBC Sports: What’s the fastest you’ve ever been in a street car?

Dippel: I don’t have my license yet, probably like 100 (mph). I haven’t really gone that fast in a street car.

NBC Sports: When do you get your license?

Dippel: I’m scheduled to take my road test next month. I turned 16 in April and you have to wait six months to get your license in New York. That kind of stinks.

NBC Sports: How did you do on the written test?

Dippel: I got one question wrong. I think there was 20 questions.

NBC Sports: What do you want your first car to be, if you don’t already have it?

Dippel: It will probably be a truck of some sort to pick up and haul trailers and race car parts. That would probably be the most practical.

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Glow in the dark: Cup cars get new look for All-Star Race

All-Star Race
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Wednesday’s NASCAR All-Star Race will be a little brighter than expected.

NASCAR announced Thursday that the exhibition night race at Bristol Motor Speedway will see certain competitors racing with underglow lights on their cars.

Cars that have automatically qualified for the event will have the lights.

Drivers who have already clinched an All-Star Race spot: Ryan Blaney, Alex Bowman, Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, Justin Haley, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Erik Jones, Matt Kenseth, Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano, Ryan Newman and Martin Truex Jr.

The light placement was first seen on Chip Ganassi Racing cars at Champion’s Week 2019 in Nashville during a burnout competition.

The best looking NASCAR burnout you'll ever see.

This might be the best looking NASCAR burnout you’ll ever see. 💨Monster Energy | Kurt Busch

Posted by Chip Ganassi Racing on Wednesday, December 4, 2019

The lights are the latest change NASCAR has made for the event, which will be held at Bristol Motor Speedway for the first time.

The race will feature the introduction of the choose rule. The rule designates a spot on the track where a driver must select if they wish to restart on the inside lane or outside lane.

Cars will also have special paint schemes that shift the numbers on the side of the cars over for sponsor placement.

Here is what upcoming NASCAR Cup races fans can attend

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Wednesday saw NASCAR announce the remaining regular season schedule for all three national series, including six Cup Series races.

In total, 10 Cup points races and the All-Star Race remain in the regular season, beginning with Sunday’s race at Kentucky Speedway (2:30 p.m. ET on FS1).

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, not all tracks are allowing fans to attend.

Here are the fan policies for the remainder of the Cup Series regular season.

Kentucky Speedway (Sunday)

Fans will not be allowed to attend.

 

All-Star Race at Bristol Motor Speedway (July 15)

Up to 30,000 fans will be allowed to attend the race.

 

Texas Motor Speedway (July 19)

Fans making up to 50% of the track’s capacity will be allowed to attend.

 

Kansas Speedway (July 23)

Fans will not be able to attend.

 

New Hampshire Motor Speedway (Aug. 2)

Roughly 19,000 fans will be able to attend.

 

Michigan International Speedway (Aug. 8-9)

Fans will not be able to attend.

 

Daytona International Speedway (Aug. 16 and Aug. 29)

“We’re working towards having fans and hopefully we’ll have some news on when we’re going to go on sale in the next couple of days,” said track president Chip Wile Thursday on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio’s “The Morning Drive.”

 

Dover International Speedway (Aug. 22 – 23)

Speedway officials remain in consultation with local, state and federal health officials, as well as Delaware Gov. John Carney, on whether fans will be allowed in the stands with appropriate social distancing for the August events.

Weekend schedule for Kentucky Speedway

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NASCAR heads to the Bluegrass State this week for four days of racing at Kentucky Speedway.

All three national series will be in action, plus the ARCA Menards Series, for five races. The Xfinity Series will hold two races for its second doubleheader of the season.

According to wunderground.com, the forecast for the start of each race is:

Thursday Xfinity race: Partly cloudy, 86 degrees and a 20% chance of rain.

Friday Xfinity race: Scattered thunderstorms, 80 degrees and 37% chance of rain.

Saturday Truck Series race: Partly cloudy, 86 degrees and 0% chance of rain.

Sunday Cup race: Scattered thunderstorms, 84 degrees, 40% chance of rain.

Here is the full weekend schedule for Kentucky Speedway.

(All times are Eastern)

Wednesday, July 8

3:30 p.m. – Xfinity rookie meeting (electronic communication)

5 p.m. – Xfinity driver-crew chief meeting (electronic communication)

5:30 – 7:30 p.m. – Driver motorhome parking (screening in progress)

Thursday, July 9

11 a.m. – 1 p.m. – Xfinity haulers enter (screening in progress)

1 – 10:30 p.m. – Xfinity garage access (screening in progress)

6 – 7:30 p.m. – Xfinity engine prime and final adjustments (pit road)

7:50 p.m. – Xfinity drivers report to cars

8 p.m. – Xfinity race No. 1; 134 laps/201 miles (FS1, Performance Racing Network, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

Friday, July 10

10:30 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. – Xfinity garage access (screening in progress)

Noon – ARCA driver/crew chief/spotter meeting (electronic communication)

12:30 p.m. – ARCA rookie meeting (teleconference)

1 p.m. – ARCA crew chief meeting (teleconference)

4 – 5 p.m. – ARCA haulers enter (screening in progress)

5 – 5:30 p.m. – Truck Series rookie meeting (teleconference)

5:30 p.m. – Trucks driver/crew chief meeting (electronic communication)

6 – 7:30 p.m. – Xfinity engine prime and final adjustments (pit road)

7:50 – Xfinity drivers report to cars

8 p.m. – Xfinity race No. 2; 200 laps/300 miles (FS1, Performance Racing Network, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

Saturday, July 11

7 a.m. – 2 p.m. – ARCA garage access (screening in progress)

8 – 10 a.m. – Truck series haulers enter (screening and equipment unload)

10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. – Truck garage access (screening in progress)

Noon – 1 p.m. – ARCA practice

2:20 p.m. – ARCA drivers report to cars

2:30 p.m. – ARCA race; 100 laps/150 miles (FS1)

4 – 5:30 p.m. – Trucks engine prime and final adjustments (garage area)

4:40 – 5:30 p.m. – ARCA haulers exit

5 p.m. – Cup driver/crew chief meeting (electronic communication)

5:30 p.m. – Cup rookie meeting (electronic communication)

5:50 p.m. – Truck drivers report to vehicles

6 p.m. – Truck race; 150 laps/225 miles (FS1, Motor Racing Network, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

6:30 – 8:30 p.m. – Cup haulers enter (screening and equipment unload)

8:30 p.m. – Truck haulers exit

Sunday, July 12

7:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. – Cup garage access (screening in progress)

12:30 – 2 p.m. – Engine prime and final adjustments on pit road

2:20 p.m. – Cup drivers report to cars

2:30 p.m. – Quaker State 400; 267 laps/400.5 miles (FS1, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

6:30 p.m. – Cup haulers exit

Thursday night’s Xfinity race at Kentucky: Start time, forecast and more

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A stretch of five races in four days at Kentucky Speedway begins Thursday night with the first of two Xfinity Series races.

It will mark the second doubleheader of the year for the Xfinity Series.

Can Chase Briscoe keep up a winning pace that’s seen him win three times in the last four races (and five overall thus far in the season’s first 13 races)?

Here’s all the info you need for Thursday night’s race:

(All times are Eastern)

START: The command to start engines will be at 8:13 p.m by Shady Rays CEO Chris Ratterman. The green flag is scheduled to wave at 8:24 p.m.

PRERACE: Garage access health screening begins at 1 p.m. (teams are assigned specific times). Engine prime and final adjustments are at 6 p.m. Drivers report to their cars at 7:50 p.m. The invocation will be given at 8:05 p.m by Jason Romano. The national anthem will be performed at 8:06 p.m. by Matthew Grant.

DISTANCE: The race is 134 laps (201 miles) around the 1.5-mile speedway.

STAGES: Stage 1 ends on Lap 30. Stage 2 ends on Lap 60.

INSPECTION: Ronnie Bassett Jr.‘s car failed inspection twice. He loses pit selection for Friday’s race.

TO THE REAR: Mason Massey and Bayley Currey (unapproved adjustments)

PACE LAPS: At the direction of race control, the entire field will go down pit road during a pace lap for pit road speed verification. If a driver stops in the pit box for any reason, pull over or slow down, they will start at the rear of the field.

TV/RADIO: FS1 will televise the race. Its coverage begins at 7:30 p.m. Performance Racing Network’s coverage will begin at 7:30 p.m. and also can be heard at goprn.com. SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry PRN’s broadcast.

FORECAST: The wunderground.com forecast calls for partly cloudy skies, a high of 86 degrees and a 24% chance of rain predicted at the start of the race.

LAST RACE: Chase Briscoe defeated Justin Haley and Noah Gragson to win on the Indianapolis road course.

LAST RACE AT KENTUCKY: Cole Custer beat Christopher Bell and Tyler Reddick.

STARTING LINEUP: Click here for lineup