NASCAR Race Weekend Central

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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Zach’s Turn: Where Lies the Truth Between Denny Hamlin & Chase Briscoe?

Chase Briscoe Denny Hamlin Indianapolis 2021

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Days after the inaugural NASCAR Cup Series race on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, Denny Hamlin and Chase Briscoe continue to debate what happened on the final restart of the race. The conversation has taken up a good chunk of the social media chatter too, whether that be on Twitter, Reddit or Facebook. But …

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Zach’s Turn: Points Battle Between Tyler Reddick & Austin Dillon Heating Up

Tyler Reddick Watkins Glen 2021

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

With three races remaining in the regular season, Tyler Reddick and Austin Dillon know who they have to fight for the final playoff spot on points. In fact, they probably know their competition too well. That’s because the Richard Childress Racing teammates currently sit on opposite sides of the NASCAR Cup Series playoff cutline, with …

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Zach’s Turn: Ross Chastain Finally Nets NASCAR Stability with Trackhouse

Ross Chastain Daniel Suarez

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Ross Chastain has bounced around NASCAR’s top three series for the past decade. Finally, though, the 28-year-old watermelon farmer has found a home in the NASCAR Cup Series for at least the next two years. Trackhouse Racing Team announced Tuesday (Aug. 3) Chastain will pilot the team’s newly-acquired No. 1 Chevrolet in 2022 after signing …

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Zach’s Turn: Team Penske in Midst of Massive Upheaval

Team Penske Joey Logano Brad Keselowski New Hampshire 2021

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Team Penske has been the beacon of stability in NASCAR for the past eight years. That cohesion was officially upended one week ago when Roger Penske confirmed Brad Keselowski’s departure from Team Penske by announcing Austin Cindric will transition into the No. 2 Ford for the 2022 season. Change is extraordinarily rare at Team Penske, …

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Zach’s Turn: Has Hendrick Motorsports Taken a Step Back?

Hendrick Motorsports Alex Bowman Denny Hamlin Atlanta 2021

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Asking whether Hendrick Motorsports has taken a step back in the midst of its best season in years probably seems absurd on the surface. The dominant four-car organization has won seven of the last nine NASCAR Cup Series races, headed mainly by Kyle Larson, and most recently won just two races ago at Road America, …

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Zach’s Turn: Stop Trying to Predict NASCAR’s Next Gen Era

2022 Next Gen cars Chevrolet Ford Toyota Jared C Tilton Getty

(Photo: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images via NASCAR Media)

The 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season is over halfway complete, which means the Next Gen car is closer to its competitive debut than ever. That doesn’t mean we are any closer to knowing what NASCAR will look like past 2021, though. The top tier of stock-car racing is about to undergo a massive shift in …

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Zach’s Turn: Corey LaJoie Holding Out Hope for a Teammate in 2022

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Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography

Corey LaJoie knew 2022 would bring a lot of change. How much change, though, remains to be determined. On June 18, Spire Motorsports announced it had sold two of its three charters to Kaulig Racing as the Matt Kaulig-owned team ventures into the NASCAR Cup Series full-time next season. The charters acquired are currently operated …

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Zach’s Turn: Stewart-Haas Racing Earns Much-Needed Boost in Nashville

2021 Nashville Cup Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing pack racing NKP

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

That Stewart-Haas Racing has had a dismal year is no breaking news. Perhaps, though, the organization’s run at Nashville Superspeedway finally provided a turning point. Aric Almirola‘s miserable season had a sizeable uptick in performance by claiming pole position in a rare qualifying session and managed to translate that into a fourth-place finish. Meanwhile, teammate …

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