Xfinity

Friday schedule for NASCAR at Michigan, Mid-Ohio

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The weekend of racing kicks off today with Trucks and Cup at Michigan International Speedway, while the Xfinity Series is at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

The Cup Series has one practice session as well as qualifying scheduled, while the Truck Series has two practice sessions.

At Mid-Ohio, the Xfinity Series also has two practice sessions.

Wunderground.com lists the following forecasts for both tracks:

  • At Michigan, the high temperature is expected to reach 78 degrees with a 1% chance of precipitation during the afternoon.
  • At Mid-Ohio, the high temperature is expected to reach 79 degrees with a 1% chance of precipitation during the afternoon.

Here’s today’s schedule for both tracks with TV and radio info.

(All times are Eastern)

Michigan International Speedway

9:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. – Cup garage open

11 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. – Truck garage open

12:35 – 1:25 p.m. – Cup practice (NBCSN, Motor Racing Network)

1:35 – 2:25 p.m. – Truck practice (No TV)

3:05 – 3:55 p.m. – Final Truck practice (No TV)

5:05 p.m. – Cup qualifying; single car/one lap (NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

 

Mid-Ohio

Friday, Aug. 9

10:30 a.m. – 7 p.m. – Xfinity garage open

1:35 – 2:25 p.m. – Xfinity practice (NBC Sports App)

4:04 – 4:55 p.m. – Final Xfinity practice (NBC Sports App)

Richard Childress: Only Cup ride will keep Tyler Reddick with team

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Richard Childress believes Tyler Reddick is ticketed for the Cup Series next season, but he isn’t sure if it’ll be with his team.

The owner of Richard Childress Racing shed some light Tuesday on what the future might hold for Reddick, the defending Xfinity series champion who has three victories this season in RCR’s No. 2 Chevrolet.

“He’s going to be a superstar,” Childress said Tuesday when asked about Reddick during a Bristol Motor Speedway event at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. “We hope to be able to keep him, but you know how this sport is. It boils down to dollars. We want to keep him here if there’s any way. If not, I want to see him in a good situation.”

Childress said his team has talked with Reddick only about being in a Cup ride for 2020. He essentially ruled out a third consecutive season in Xfinity for the 23-year-old, who recently announced he will become a father.

“That’s our goal right now is to try to put him in a Cup car,” Childress said. “That’s what he wants to do. That’s the reason he came to RCR because he knew we had Cup cars and Cup experience.

“He’ll win some Cup races if you put him in a Cup car. That’s where he wants to be, and I think he deserves it. He’s ready for Cup right now.”

RCR fields Chevys in Cup for Austin Dillon, Childress’ grandson, and rookie Daniel Hemric, who is ranked 25th in the points standings with two top 10s (including a seventh Sunday at Pocono). It has run as many as four Cup cars in the past, depending on sponsorship.

Reddick has made two Cup starts for RCR this year, finishing ninth at Kansas Speedway two months ago, and he has said the team wants to add more Cup races to his schedule.

At New Hampshire Motor Speedway two weeks ago, Reddick said his contract with RCR was “just this year right now, but I think there’s options here and there, but I don’t need to get into those details. We’re working hard. We want to win a championship on the Xfinity side. There’s a lot of other distractions out there.

“You want to be interested and see the potential of this and that and what can we piece together. Right now it’s just trying to get the next Cup race going. That other stuff, it’ll work out. You just run the best you can and hopefully the right people come along in the door to make something possible on the Cup side.”

Reddick has six career victories in Xfinity and captured the 2018 title by winning the finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. He also has three wins in the Gander Outdoors Truck Series.

“I think Tyler has that never give up attitude,” Childress said. “If you pass him, he’s going to try to pass you back. He’s not going to give up. He’s just a hard racer. He has the car control. He has the talent it takes to put behind it to win, and he’s definitely a winner.”

Goodyear tire info for Michigan (Cup, Xfinity) and Texas (Truck)

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For the second consecutive week, Goodyear rubber will get another high-speed workout in Sunday’s FireKeepers Casino 400 NASCAR Cup race and Saturday’s LTi Printing 250 Xfinity race at the 2-mile Michigan International Speedway.

Meanwhile, the Gander Outdoors Truck Series will visit another high-speed track, the 1.5-mile Texas Motor Speedway, in Friday night’s SpeedyCash.com 400.

Here’s how this weekend’s tire notes shapes up at both tracks:

According to this week’s Goodyear media release about racing at Michigan, “Recent Monster Energy NASCAR Cup races at Charlotte Motor Speedway and Kansas Speedway – where passes for the lead and passing in general were up – have the NASCAR world excited about what we might see at Michigan International Speedway this weekend. With this current Cup rules package, corner speeds will be up at Michigan and tight racing throughout the field should be the order of the day. The track is still relatively smooth since it was resurfaced in 2012 so Goodyear’s tire set-up at Michigan is now aligned with what is run at another recent repave in Texas Motor Speedway.”

Added Goodyear director of racing Greg Stucker, With Michigan being a relatively recent repave, combined with the 2019 Cup rules package and drivers expected to be on the throttle all the way through the corners, we always have to be cognizant of tire heat. We combat that with the tread compounds we bring to tracks with smooth surfaces, as well as the gage or thickness of that tread that allows the tire to dissipate heat. Overall, this weekend could be a good show for the fans if it is anything like some other recent events where corner speeds have been up and there has been a lot of tight racing and passing.”

Here’s the Cup and Xfinity tire info for Michigan:

Tire: Goodyear Eagle Speedway Radials for both Cup and Xfinity.

Set limits: Cup: Three sets for practice, one set for qualifying and seven sets for the race; Xfinity: six sets for the event

Tire Codes: Left-side — D-4798; Right-side – D-4796

Tire Circumference: Left-side — 2,227 mm (87.68 in.); Right-side — 2,251 mm (88.62 in.)

Minimum Recommended Inflation: Left Front — 22 psi; Left Rear – 22 psi; Right Front — 54 psi; Right Rear — 50 psi

Notes for Cup and Xfinity: Teams in both the Cup and Xfinity Series will run the same tire set-up at Michigan this weekend. This is the same combination of left- and right-side tires that these teams ran at Texas in March. Cup and Xfinity teams ran this same right-side tire code at Michigan in 2018. This is a different left-side than what was run on this track last year, featuring a construction change to align with other speedways. Air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.

Here’s the Trucks tire info for Texas:

Tire: Goodyear Eagle Speedway Radials

Set limits: Truck: Six sets for the event

Tire Codes: Left-side — D-4798; Right-side – D-4796

Tire Circumference: Left-side — 2,227 mm (87.68 in.); Right-side – 2,251 mm (88.62 in.)

Minimum Recommended Inflation: Left Front — 24 psi; Left Rear — 22 psi; Right Front — 52 psi; Right Rear — 50 psi

Notes for Trucks: This is the same combination of left- and right-side tires that Gander Outdoors Trucks teams ran at Texas in March. Truck teams will run this same right-side tire code at Kansas next week and this complete tire set-up at Kentucky in July. As on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run liners in all four tire positions at Texas. Air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.

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Bump & Run: Recounting most memorable Cup races

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What are the two or three most memorable NASCAR races you attended?

Nate Ryan: June 21, 1997, California Speedway: New NASCAR sensation Jeff Gordon christens Roger Penske’s new racing palace with a victory in its inaugural race weekend that also was the first Cup experience for many in attendance (including this writer). July 7, 2001, Daytona International Speedway: In one of the most feel-good moments in NASCAR history, Dale Earnhardt Jr. wins the first Cup race held at the track since his father’s death there five months earlier. Aug. 7, 2005, Indianapolis Motor Speedway: Tony Stewart finally breaks through at the hometown track that tormented him for a decade, climbing the fence after a Brickyard victory that became the signature moment of his second championship season. 

Dustin Long: The inaugural Brickyard 400 at Indy in 1994 with that massive crowd, Dale Earnhardt trying to lead that opening lap, the Bodine brothers brouhaha and Jeff Gordon winning it. The October 2000 Talladega race that Earnhardt rallied from 18th with five laps left to win. July 2001 when Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the first Cup race at Daytona after his father’s death.

Daniel McFadin: My first NASCAR race ever in 1997 with the inaugural Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway when I was 6. Flash forward to 2011 for my first race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. I witnessed Paul Menard‘s surprise Brickyard 400 win over Jeff Gordon. But as an adult, the most exciting race I’ve ever attended was last year’s inaugural Cup event on the Charlotte Roval. The final lap is one of the wildest things I’ve ever seen and probably will see in the near future.

Jerry Bonkowski: The 1988 Checker 500 at the then-Phoenix International Raceway. It was Alan Kulwicki’s first career Winston Cup win and he celebrated by performing the first-ever “Polish Victory Lap,” where he drove in the opposite direction around the 1-mile track before going on to victory lane. The 1994 Brickyard 400. It was near-magical with a sellout crowd watching the first time NASCAR had ever raced upon the greatest racetrack in the world. The 2011 Ford 400. Tony Stewart won the race and captured his third career NASCAR Cup championship. But after the race was the most surreal setting I’ve ever seen in racing. As Stewart celebrated his win, it was also announced that crew chief Darian Grubb was being fired. It was such an awkward scene, but to Grubb’s credit, he handled it like the true pro he is, answering all questions — even the ones that involved his firing.

 

Talladega, Dover, Kansas, All-Star Race and the Coca-Cola 600 are the next five Cup events. What will you be watching for in this next stretch?

Nate Ryan: Whether the Gibbs-Penske stranglehold is broken.

Dustin Long: What team or teams can get to victory lane that don’t run for Joe Gibbs Racing and Team Penske. Can Kyle Larson shake his poor start and be a factor? Also will be curious to see how the package fares in these races, particularly the 1.5-mile tracks. 

Daniel McFadin: I’m interested to see how the rules package performs at Charlotte a year after its early draft was introduced in the All-Star Race. This package was introduced to improve competition on 1.5-mile tracks, with Charlotte being one of the main culprits. The All-Star Race and the Coke 600 will be the most significant tests for the package yet for me.

Jerry Bonkowski: Whether teams that have struggled or haven’t enjoyed better overall success in the first quarter of the season start to rebound. Will we see upward movement in the standings and better performance from guys like Jimmie Johnson, Chase Elliott, William Byron, Alex Bowman, Austin Dillon, Daniel Hemric, Bubba Wallace, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ryan Newman and others? To me, the key race will be the 600. If teams that have struggled up to now don’t start turning things around by the Memorial Day weekend race, will their seasons essentially be lost by then?

 

Talladega is Dash 4 Cash race in the Xfinity Series. Drivers earning Cup points are barred from competing in 12 of 33 Xfinity races (Dash 4 Cash races and final eight races of the year). Is that enough?

Nate Ryan: Too many. Would prefer to see the trend toward restricting lower-level starts be reversed. 

Dustin Long: Don’t need to further bar drivers scoring Cup points from any other Xfinity races.

Daniel McFadin: I’m for limiting Cup drivers as much as possible in Xfinity, but the 12 races overall is reasonable given the significance of those races. Only alteration I’d propose: Outside those races, Cup drivers with more than five years of experience can’t compete in consecutive races.

Jerry Bonkowski: Given that Cup regulars with more than five years of full-time experience in the series are even more restricted — to just seven starts per season in the Xfinity Series — yes, I feel that’s enough. Cup drivers doing any more than seven Xfinity starts — not including Cup regulars with less than five years of full-time Cup experience — would water down the chance for the Xfinity regulars to shine on their own.

 

Goodyear tire info for Richmond Raceway

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NASCAR makes its first visit of the season to Richmond Raceway this weekend, and with it will come a new set of Goodyear Eagle Intermediate Radials in both Cup and Xfinity.

Teams in both series will run the same tire set-up, making Richmond the only track at which both series will run the two distinct Goodyear tire codes.

Richmond is currently one of the more high tire wear race tracks on the NASCAR circuit,” said Greg Stucker, Goodyear’s director of racing in a media release. “While we’ve seen a little less wear with this new, higher downforce rules package than we’ve had over the past few years, tracks like Atlanta and Fontana and Richmond still wear tires.

“The tires this weekend feature the same compounds we’ve been running at Richmond for the past several seasons, and being able to lay rubber on this track creates multiple racing grooves and more side-by-side racing as drivers move around to find the fastest line.

Compared to what was run at Richmond last year, both the left-side and right-side tires feature construction updates. As on most NASCAR ovals of one mile or less in length, liners will not be used in tires at Richmond.

Also, tires at Richmond will have more stagger (difference in height between the shorter left-side tire and the taller right-side tire) built into the tire set-up.

Here’s the tire info for this weekend’s races:

Set limits – Cup: Three sets for practice, one set for qualifying and 10 sets for the race (nine race sets plus one set transferred from qualifying or practice); Xfinity: six sets for the event.

Tire Codes: Left-side – D-4874; Right-side – D-4876

Tire Circumference: Left-side — 2,214 mm (87.17 in.); Right-side – 2,244 mm (88.35 in.)

Minimum Recommended Inflation: Left Front – 12 psi; Left Rear – 12 psi; Right Front – 30 psi; Right Rear – 27 psi