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Behind the scenes with Bubba Wallace via Facebook Watch

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Darrell “Bubba” Wallace Jr. will be featured in an eight-part docuseries tracking his debut in the Daytona 500.

The Richard Petty Motorsports rookie, who will become the first African-American driver in the Great American Race since 1969, is the star of “Behind The Wall: Bubba Wallace,” with the first two of eight episodes premiering Thursday.

Facebook Watch is a new video platform that launched last summer and recently featured New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady in a series called Tom vs. Time.

Here’s the release about Wallace’s Facebook Watch from NASCAR:

As Darrell “Bubba” Wallace Jr. prepares to make history in the 2018 DAYTONA 500, fans can follow his inspirational journey to the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series in “Behind the Wall: Bubba Wallace,” a new docu-series coming soon to Facebook Watch.

The first episode in the original series will post on Thursday, February 15, NASCAR Digital Media and Facebook announced today. Fans can view the trailer and add the show to their Watchlists by following the Behind the Wall: Bubba Wallace show Page.

On Sunday, Feb. 18, Wallace will become the first African-American since 1969 to drive in NASCAR’s most iconic race, the DAYTONA 500 (2:30 p.m. ET on FOX).

The eight-part series was produced by NASCAR Productions and will chronicle Wallace’s road to Daytona International Speedway – from his earliest racing days to his debut in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series as the new fulltime driver of the No. 43 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 for Richard Petty Motorsports.

“It’s been wild to have this entire journey documented leading into the DAYTONA 500,” said Wallace. “It’s cool to finally see it all come together. I’ve watched a few episodes and it’s awesome.

It really shows how much preparation is going into my first year racing in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series with Richard Petty Motorsports and the famed ’43.’ This is something a little out of the box that’s great for fans.”

The series follows Wallace in the months and weeks leading up to the 2018 season, including encounters with team owner and NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Richard Petty, Charlotte Hornets rookie Malik Monk and close friend and fellow NASCAR driver Ryan Blaney.

Two episodes will air per day from Thursday through Saturday in the lead-up to the 60th running of the DAYTONA 500, while the series’ final two episodes will be available next week. One of the more popular drivers on social media, Wallace will interact with his fans live on Facebook as the series unfolds.

“Bubba Wallace is a burgeoning superstar in NASCAR, and his story is one that brings inspiration to so many people,” said Evan Parker, NASCAR managing director, content strategy. “With Facebook Watch, we’re thrilled to present Bubba’s journey to the DAYTONA 500 and the highest echelon of our sport in a completely new and innovative way.”

Prior to graduating to NASCAR’s top series, Wallace competed in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. In October 2013, he won the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Martinsville Speedway to become the first African-American driver to win a NASCAR national series race since NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Wendell Scott in 1963.

Facebook Watch is a video platform created to bring episodic content, community and conversation together on Facebook. The platform is home to a wide variety of sports shows, including reality, documentary and live sports.

Denny Hamlin posts fastest lap in Saturday morning Cup practice

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LOUDON, N.H. – Denny Hamlin had the fastest lap in Saturday morning’s Cup practice at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, leading the field with a lap of 132.942 mph.

He was followed by Ryan Blaney (132.526 mph), Martin Truex Jr. (132.462), Kyle Busch (132.406) and Kevin Harvick (132.356).

Harvick ran the most laps at 50. Harvick told NASCAR on NBC broadcaster Rick Allen in the garage that he ran so many laps to see how much the speed falls off as the tires wear. Jimmie Johnson was next with 42 laps run.

There were no incidents in the 50-minute session.

Ryan Blaney had the best 10-lap average at 131.767 mph.

Click here for the speed chart.

Start time of Sunday’s Cup race moved up to 1 pm ET

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LOUDON, N.H. – The start time for Sunday’s Cup race has been moved up to 1 p.m. ET because of the threat of rain, NASCAR announced.

NBCSN will broadcast the race. NBCSN’s coverage begins at noon ET.

The wunderground.com forecast for 1 p.m. ET Sunday calls for a 49 percent chance of scattered thunderstorms. There is a threat of rain throughout the day.

Kurt Busch won the pole for Sunday’s race.

Two Cup teams to be penalized practice time Saturday at New Hampshire

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LOUDON, N.H. – Denny Hamlin and Kasey Kahne each will miss 15 minutes of Saturday’s final practice session at New Hampshire Motor Speedway for inspection issues, NASCAR announced.

Hamlin is being penalized for failing pre-qualifying inspection twice last weekend at Kentucky. Kahne is being penalized for failing pre-qualifying inspection twice Friday at New Hampshire.

Final practice is scheduled to go from 12:35 – 1:25 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

NASCAR’s Saturday schedule for New Hampshire Motor Speedway

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Today’s schedule at New Hampshire Motor Speedway includes two Cup practice sessions and the Xfinity Series race at the “Magic Mile.”

Here’s the full schedule with TV and radio info.

(All times are Eastern)

Saturday, July 21

7 a.m. — Xfinity garage opens

8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. — Cup garage open

10:05 – 10:55 a.m. — Cup practice (CNBC)

11:05 a.m. — Xfinity qualifying; multi-vehicle/three rounds (CNBC)

12:35 – 1:25 p.m. — Final Cup practice (NBCSN)

1:30 p.m. — Xfinity driver/crew chief meeting

3:30 p.m. — Xfinity driver introductions

4 p.m. — Lakes Region 200 Xfinity race; 200 laps/211.6 miles (NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)