Race Weekend Central

Did You Notice?: Have NASCAR Playoffs Changed Perception 17 Years In?

Alex Bowman pack racing at Phoenix

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Did You Notice?… The 2021 NASCAR Cup Series playoffs have flipped the script on two of its biggest teams? Stewart-Haas Racing has struggled through the worst year of its existence. SHR has just one win, a darkness-shortened New Hampshire Motor Speedway upset by Aric Almirola. Marquee driver Kevin Harvick sits winless a year after setting a …

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Did You Notice?: Major U.S. Markets Without a NASCAR Cup Race

Brett Moffitt celebrates his win at Iowa Speedway in 2018. (Photo: NKP)

Brett Moffitt celebrating his Iowa win (Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Did You Notice? … How many major markets don’t have a NASCAR Cup Series race within reasonable driving distance? The recent focus on a potential exhibition race at the L.A. Coliseum has people buzzing about potential changes to the 2022 schedule and beyond. The sport has been more flexible than ever to adjust both locations and …

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Did You Notice?: For Ryan Preece, Matt DiBenedetto the Only NASCAR Way Up Is Down

2021 Nashville Trucks Ryan Preece happy NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Did You Notice? … For Ryan Preece and Matt DiBenedetto, NASCAR Cup Series employment options are shrinking? Both men are likely free agents after JTG Daugherty Racing revealed they’re downsizing to a one-car team in 2022. Matty D has been auditioning for weeks after Harrison Burton announced he’ll be a Cup rookie full-time next season driving …

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Did You Notice?: Matt Kaulig Forming Blueprint For Fresh NASCAR Ownership

Kaulig Racing expanded to a three-car organization in the NASCAR Xfinity Series in 2021. (Photo: NKP)

#10: Jeb Burton, Kaulig Racing, Chevrolet Camaro, #11: Justin Haley, Kaulig Racing, Chevrolet Camaro LeafFilter Gutter Protection

Did You Notice? … Matt Kaulig has had one of the most successful beginnings of any team without a NASCAR Cup Series charter? His No. 16 Chevrolet became the first open car to win a Cup race since the current franchise-based system was created in 2016. Throughout the year, Kaulig has laid a solid foundation for …

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Did You Notice?: Winless NASCAR Cup Contenders on Road Courses

2021 Dover Cup Brad Keselowski NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Did You Notice? … Not every NASCAR Cup Series title contender is like Chase Elliott? Elliott is seeking his third straight road course win this weekend at Watkins Glen International. He’s won two of the four road course races in Cup this year, both with “America” in their track name (Circuit of the Americas in Texas …

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Did You Notice?: Brad Keselowski Perfect Fit to Become Jack Roush 2.0

Brad Keselowski on pit road at the Daytona International Speedway road course 2021. (Photo: NKP)

#2: Brad Keselowski, Team Penske, Ford Mustang Discount Tire

Did You Notice? … Brad Keselowski is the right person at the right time to buy into Roush Fenway Racing? Some 33 years after Jack Roush started his NASCAR program, a succession plan has been put into place in the form of the 2012 Cup Series champion. Keselowski laid out his reasoning Tuesday (July 20) in …

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Did You Notice?: Communication Between NASCAR Drivers, Executives at Crossroads

2021 Pocono I Cup Bubba Wallace Steve Phelps laugh James Gilbert Getty

(Photo: James Gilbert/Getty Images via NASCAR Media)

Did You Notice? … NASCAR drama between drivers and executives has been building at a breakneck pace? It all started with last week’s Atlanta Motor Speedway repave announcement from Speedway Motorsports, Inc. President Marcus Smith. After 24 years under the current configuration, the track will be getting a facelift with both fresh asphalt and an altered …

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Did You Notice?: 6 NASCAR Storylines to Follow With 6 Regular Season Races Left

Kyle Larson races teammate William Byron in the 2021 Pennzoil 400 Photo: NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Did You Notice? … There’s six races left in the NASCAR Cup Series regular season? After some incredible parity, with 10 different winners in the first 11 races, the 2021 playoff battle has mostly sorted itself out. We’ve had just one new winner in the last nine races as Cinderellas have been replaced by the typical …

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Did You Notice?: Team Penske Instability On the Rise with Brad Keselowski’s Departure

Roger Penske at Indianapolis Motor Speedway 2020 (Photo: IndyCar Media)

Roger Penske (Photo by: Joe Skibinski, courtesy of IndyCar Media)

Did You Notice?… Team Penske has gone from 2021 championship contender to a team that’s struggling to keep up? A slow unraveling at Ford’s top organization this season has taken place since news broke Brad Keselowski would be leaving the team in 2022 to become an owner/driver at Roush Fenway Racing. When that story broke, on …

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Did You Notice?: 17 Potential NASCAR Cup Series Winners? We Might Not Get 12

Kevin Harvick on pit road at Charlotte Motor Speedway (May 2021). (Photo: NKP)

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Did You Notice? … 17 winners in a NASCAR regular season isn’t going to happen in 2021? After 10 NASCAR Cup Series winners in the first 11 races, we’ve had just one in the last five as Kyle Larson and Hendrick Motorsports have started pulling away from the pack. This conversation comes up yearly due to …

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