NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Up to Speed: Aric Almirola Exceeding Playoff Expectations

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(Photo: Danny Peters)

Two races into the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs, Aric Almirola’s performance is the biggest positive surprise.  After getting through a chaotic race in Las Vegas unscathed, Almirola earned a fifth-place finish Saturday night at Richmond Raceway.  That finish, coupled with a sixth-place run last week, has lifted Almirola to sixth 0n the …

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The 10: NASCAR Cup Series Power Rankings After Las Vegas II

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(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

The last time the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series raced at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in March, a championship contender arose in the form of Kevin Harvick. And when the series came back around to Vegas last weekend, another driver was feeling lucky, topping our NASCAR power rankings in the process. Brad Keselowski had zero …

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Thinkin’ Out Loud: Brad Keselowski Sets Benchmarks with 3rd Straight Win & Penske 500th

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(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Who’s in the headline Momentum is a beautiful thing when you’re running for a championship, and Brad Keselowski is riding a huge wave of it after winning his third consecutive race and locking himself into the second round of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoffs. Keselowski won the second stage and the race in a …

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Up to Speed: Pressure to Win on Denny Hamlin

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(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

Denny Hamlin has rarely suffered from a lack of wins in his NASCAR career.  Since 2006, his rookie year in the Cup Series, he has never had a winless season.  Some of those years certainly were not big-win seasons, but Hamlin always found a way to get to Victory Lane at least once. Even in …

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NASCAR 101: Who’s Most Likely to Progress Out of the Cup Playoffs’ First Round?

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(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

This year’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoffs, which begin this weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, marks the fifth time in which the series has employed an elimination-based format to help decide its champion at the end of the season. Starting in 2014, the series cooked up different rounds throughout the playoffs that eliminated …

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5 Points To Ponder: In The 2018 NASCAR Playoffs

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(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

ONE: Should We Fast-Track The Big Three Straight To Homestead? Never in the five-year history of NASCAR’s 16-driver playoff format have we seen three wheelmen so far ahead of the pack. Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. start the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoff as overwhelming favorites. They won 17 of …

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The 10: NASCAR Cup Series Power Rankings after Indianapolis

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(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

It had been a long 26-race regular season with multiple teams falling behind while others went above and beyond in the performance department. The wait for the end of the regular season, however, was nothing like the three-day wait NASCAR faced this weekend in Indianapolis. Heavy rain throughout the weekend pushed both XFINITY and Cup …

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Thinkin’ Out Loud: Big Machine Vodka 400 at the Brickyard

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(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

The Key Moment Denny Hamlin took the lead from Clint Bowyer by pitting two laps earlier than the No. 14. He seemed to have the car to beat Bowyer when a pair of backmarkers, Landon Cassill and Jeffrey Earnhardt, wrecked with six laps to go and bought out a caution. Brad Keselowski was able to …

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Who’s Hot & Who’s Not in NASCAR: Monday Afternoon Racing at Indianapolis

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(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

For the second week in a row, Brad Keselowski parked his Team Penske Ford Fusion in Victory Lane in one of the crown jewels of NASCAR, winning the Big Machine Vodka 400 at the Brickyard at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The race was delayed until Monday afternoon because of pouring rain, just after the XFINITY Series …

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Kurt Busch Content Going into Playoffs Under the Radar

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(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

While much of the chatter this NASCAR season has been about the “Big 3,” Kurt Busch is consistently running at the top of the next tier of drivers, currently sitting fourth in the championship standings, just behind the alluded Big 3. Busch, 40, picked up his first victory since the 2017 Daytona 500 three weeks …

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