NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Zach’s Turn: Putting Myself in the Driver’s Seat for Once

Zach Sturniolo Zach’s Turn

(Photo: Zach Sturniolo)

As someone who writes about motorsports, my role is to observe. I watch drivers wheel their machines around racetracks, fight physics, search for grip and look for ways around their competitors while they manage business dealings out of the race car. I feel like my opinions are generally well informed because I’ve been fortunate enough …

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Zach’s Turn: Brad Keselowski Shining in Rare Underdog Role Through Playoffs

Brad Keselowski Texas NASCAR 2021

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

On Oct. 10 at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL, Brad Keselowski was on the brink of elimination. His competitors were doing him no favors. The No. 2 Ford was sent spinning multiple times around the part-oval, part-road-course. And with no significant playoff points to carry him through the postseason, there were multiple points were it …

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Zach’s Turn: Time to Start Holding Kevin Harvick Accountable

Chase Elliott with damage to the No. 9 car during the 2021 Bank of America ROVAL400. Photo: NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Kevin Harvick is one of an elite few at the top of his era in the NASCAR Cup Series, but nothing on Harvick’s resume absolves the 2014 champion of accountability. Why, then, are we so quick to dismiss his wrongdoings over the years? Sure, this column is inspired by the events that took place Sunday …

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Zach’s Turn: Anthony Alfredo Survives Talladega for First Top 10

Anthony Alfredo Talladega 2 2021

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Anthony Alfredo finally found the good run he’s long been looking for at Talladega Superspeedway. Lost in the shuffle of Bubba Wallace’s historic day, Alfredo kept his No. 38 Georgia Peanuts Ford clean and brought the car home 10th for his first career top 10 in the NASCAR Cup Series. “We’re really proud of that,” …

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Zach’s Turn: William Byron Faces Déjà Vu as Playoffs Bring More Trouble

William Byron

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

William Byron had to dig deep at Bristol Motor Speedway to pull himself above the playoff cut line and advance to the Round of 12. But another round has brought another points hole for Byron to crawl out of after a night of missteps that led him to an 18th-place finish at Las Vegas Motor …

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Zach’s Turn: Pocono Raceway’s Doubleheader Canned Too Quickly

Pocono Raceway 2021

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

Pocono Raceway finally got to show NASCAR fans exactly how a doubleheader weekend can work. Five races in three days – two Cup Series races accompanied by ARCA Menards, Camping World Truck and Xfinity series events – provided the ultimate weekend for stock car racing fans. The Pennsylvania racing community and its surrounding areas responded …

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Zach’s Turn: NASCAR’s Points Battles You Should Know Exist

NASCAR Cody Ware Ryan Preece 2021 Coca-Cola 600

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

With the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs in full swing, you’re forgiven if you have limited your attention to the 16 eligible drivers. But there are other points battles happening behind them you ought to know about — a point hammered home by Reddit user u/1-800-DADJOKE. That person has been keeping a watchful eye on the …

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Zach’s Turn: Ross Chastain Storms Forward Without Playoff Pressure

Ross Chastain before a NASCAR race at Circuit of the Americas, May 2021. Photo: NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

As his tenure with Chip Ganassi Racing nears its checkered flag, Ross Chastain has no pressure.

There are no playoff expectations since his No. 42 team didn’t qualify for the postseason. There is no need to audition for a new ride, since he’s already confirmed to join Trackhouse Racing in 2022 as the driver of the team’s new No. 1 car. All there is to do is go out and try to wind up in victory lane.

Zach’s Turn: Darlington Highlights Intersection of Old & New as Playoff Opener

Darlington Raceway NASCAR

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Darlington Raceway is an obvious historic landmark for NASCAR. That is part of what makes the 71-year-old facility the perfect start of the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs, which kick off at the 1.33-mile South Carolinian oval Sunday (Sept. 5) with the 72nd annual Cook Out Southern 500 at 6 p.m. ET. Although the 10-week playoffs …

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Zach’s Turn: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Hopeful Momentum Translates Into Daytona Win

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Michigan 2021

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. is in the midst of one of the best seasons of his career. The driver of the No. 47 Chevrolet for JTG Daugherty Racing has finished outside the top 20 just six times through 25 races and posted his 13th top-15 finish of the season Sunday (Aug. 22) at Michigan International Speedway …

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