Sunday Atlanta Cup race: Start time, TV info, weather

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Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway will be the first run on its newly repaved and reconfigured layout.

Previously renowned for its abrasive surface, the 1.54-mile oval has not only received its first repave since 1997 but also increased the banking in the turns from 24 to 28 degrees.

Sunday’s race will have cars using a superspeedway rules package. Indeed, the aim of Atlanta’s changes is to produce more superspeedway-style pack racing, which is the norm at Daytona and Talladega.

This week, drivers have wondered what exactly they’re in for at the new Atlanta. A lot of fans may feel the same way.

Details for Sunday’s Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway

(All times Eastern)

START: Country music star Brantley Gilbert will give the command at 3:08 p.m. … The green flag is scheduled to wave at 3:17 p.m.

PRERACE: Cup garage opens at 7 a.m. … Cup inspection begins at 8 a.m. … Driver introductions are at 2:30 p.m. … Marvin Bussey, executive director of Teens at Work in Atlanta will give the invocation at 3 p.m. … U.S. Army Band (Fort Benning, Georgia) will perform the national anthem at 3:01 p.m.

DISTANCE: The race is 325 laps (500.5 miles) on the 1.54-mile speedway.

COMPETITION CAUTION: Lap 45

STAGES: Stage 1 ends at Lap 105. Stage 2 ends at Lap 210.

TV/RADIO: FOX will broadcast the race at 3 p.m. Pre-race coverage begins at 1:30 p.m. on FS1 and continues on FOX at 2:30 p.m. … Performance Racing Network’s radio coverage begins at 2 p.m. and will also stream at GoPRN.com; SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry the PRN broadcast.

STREAMING: FOX Sports

FORECAST: The Weather Underground forecast calls for sunny skies, a high of 65 degrees and dry conditions at the start of the race.

TO THE REAR: Harrison Burton (failed inspection twice, car chief ejected) and Brad Keselowski (unapproved adjustments)

STARTING LINEUP: Atlanta Cup starting lineup

LAST TIME: Kurt Busch punched his ticket to last year’s Cup playoffs by besting his brother, Kyle Busch, to win last July at Atlanta (see highlights above). It was the final Cup race prior to Atlanta’s repave and reconfiguration.

CATCH UP ON NBC SPORTS COVERAGE:

Drivers anticipate chaos in Atlanta Cup race

Dr. Diandra: How NASCAR teams prepare to run a brand-new track

Friday 5: A conversation with SMI executive Marcus Smith

What will the new Atlanta race like? Drivers offer their thoughts

Dr. Diandra: What makes reconfigured, repaved Atlanta a superspeedway?

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