Sunday’s Southern 500 marks the beginning of the playoffs for 16 drivers.
Kyle Busch seeks a third title. Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, Martin Truex Jr. and Kurt Busch each seek a second title. The rest look for their first Cup championship, including Denny Hamlin and pole-sitter Chase Elliott.
The first round features Sunday’s Southern 500 and races at Richmond and Bristol before the playoff field is cut to 12 drivers.
Here is all the info for Sunday’s Southern 500 at Darlington:
(All times are Eastern)
START: Max Reaves, son of Cook Out CEO Jeremy Reaves, will give the command to start engines at 6:07 p.m. The green flag is scheduled to wave at 6:17 p.m.
PRERACE: Cup haulers enter the garage at 9 a.m. Garage access health screening begins at 11 a.m. Cup garage opens at 11 a.m. Drivers report to their cars at 5:40 p.m. The invocation will be given at 6 p.m. by Dr. Bill Curtis, pastor, Cornerstone Baptist Church in Darlington, South Carolina. The national anthem will be performed by Sr. Master Sergeant Steven David, South Carolina Air National Guard, at 6:01 p.m.
DISTANCE: The race is 367 laps (501.3 miles) around the 1.366-mile superspeedway.
COMPETITION CAUTION: Lap 25
STAGES: Stage 1 ends on Lap 115. Stage 2 ends on Lap 230.
TV/RADIO: NBCSN will televise the race. Coverage begins at 5 p.m. with NASCAR America. Countdown to Green airs at 5:30 p.m. Motor Racing Network’s radio coverage will begin at 5 p.m. and also can be heard at mrn.com. SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry the broadcast.
STREAMING: Watch the race on the NBC Sports App
FORECAST: The wunderground.com forecast calls for sunny skies with a high of 82 degrees and a zero chance of rain at the start of the race.
LAST RACE: William Byron won last weekend at Daytona for his first career Cup points win. Chase Elliott placed second. Denny Hamlin finished third.
LAST RACE AT DARLINGTON: Denny Hamlin beat Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvick on May 20.
TO THE REAR: Ryan Blaney has been penalized for improperly mounted ballast. He will start at the rear. Also, he has been docked 10 points and crew chief Todd Gordon suspended for this race. Austin Dillon (unapproved adjustments), Joey Gase (unapproved adjustments), Ross Chastain (driver change).
STARTING LINEUP: Click here for starting lineup
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