NASCAR Race Weekend Central

The Frontstretch 5: Best NASCAR Cup Seasons By Drivers Who Didn’t Win Championship

Carl Edwards Texas II 2008

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

1. 1985 Bill Elliott won plenty of races and money and even earned a couple really cool nicknames in 1985. But the big prize eluded the red-headed Georgia leadfoot that year. Elliott came into 1985 having won a total of four NASCAR Cup Series races during the previous two seasons, but proved to be almost …

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2-Headed Monster: Is Rudy Fugle the Answer for William Byron?

2016 CWTS Kentucky William Byron Kyle Busch Rudy Fugle Trophy Nigel Kinrade NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade / NKP)

Under-the-radar moves can sometimes have the biggest impact. The NASCAR silly season brings lots of changes, and while some moves are flashier than others, sometimes it’s the ones that don’t make all the headlines that result in a team’s success. Most of the moves people pay attention to are when drivers move from one team …

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The Underdog House: John Hunter Nemechek Just Plain Speedy in Kansas

2020 Kansas II Cup John Hunter Nemechek car NKP

Top Dog John Hunter Nemechek was back on top of the underdogs on Sunday as the rookie driver finished 17th in the Hollywood Casino 400. Nemechek earned his only career Xfinity Series win at Kansas Speedway, so perhaps we should have seen this coming. Not only that, but his first Gander RV & Outdoors Truck …

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The Underdog House: Bubba Wallace Leads on the Long, Lonely Road Home

2020 Charlotte Road Cup Jimmie Johnson Bubba Wallace racing NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Top Dog Road courses at the top level of NASCAR are something of an equalizer. A good driver can elevate the performance of an entire team even without the benefit of top notch equipment or research data. So it’s a logical assumption that at least one or two underdogs will likely run competitively and finish …

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The Underdog House: Ty Dillon Best in Class as Underdogs Run Wild at Talladega

2020 Talladega II CUP Ty Dillon pack racing NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Top Dog As usual, a NASCAR Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway resulted in a “Big One.” No, not just a big crash, though there were plenty of those. I’m referring to a big group of underdog teams scattered throughout the top half of the finishing order. Leading the line both literally and figuratively was …

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The Underdog House: John Hunter Nemechek Loses Pit Strategy Gamble in Las Vegas

2020 Las Vegas NCS John Hunter Nemechek Car NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Top Dog There hasn’t been much to get excited about for our Cup Series underdogs lately. We’ve primarily talked about the best in the category barely making the top 20 by the end of each race. Las Vegas Motor Speedway and its surrounding environment may have inspired you to bet the farm on a long …

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The Underdog House: Michael McDowell Does Better, Still Best At Bristol

2020 Bristol NCS Michael McDowell Car NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Top Dog Being the top underdog each week can be a funny thing. Take for example Front Row Motorsports’ NASCAR Cup Series driver Michael McDowell. McDowell earned the proverbial best in class award for the second consecutive race at Bristol Motor Speedway last Saturday, Sept. 19, by finishing 10th. However, in the previous race at …

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Friday Faceoff: Is Bristol a Good Place for a Cutoff Race?

2019MENCSBristolBMSRacingNKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Does a race need naturally occurring cautions to make it more interesting? Luken Glover: There has to be a balance between too many cautions and no cautions. As a short track, Richmond Raceway is a place expected to provide a few cautions, but over the past couple of seasons we really haven’t seen that. It …

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The Underdog House: Virginia Is for Lovers, Not Underdogs

2020 Richmond NCS Michael McDowell Racing NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Top Dog When covering underdog teams, there’s always a distinct possibility that looms over each and every race. That possibility is the potential for every Cinderella at the ball to wind up with a broken glass slipper. Or perhaps more appropriate, the ugly, well-funded stepsisters might steal all of the glass slippers. Such was the …

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The Underdog House: Michael McDowell Rides Again In Darlington

2020DarlingtonNCSMichaelMcDowellCarNKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Top Dog Michael McDowell spent numerous weeks being highlighted in this category earlier in the season, as he and his Front Row Motorsports teammate John Hunter Nemechek divided most of the top finishes between themselves. Lately, things have taken a less favorable turn. Coming into Sunday’s event at Darlington Raceway, McDowell had finished outside the …

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