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Food City 500 (Bristol)

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The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series returns to Thunder Valley, the place called “The Last Great Colosseum” which is the most temperamental half-mile track on the circuit: Bristol. After a long delayed Texas race which Kyle Busch won in the final 34 laps, the defending Sprint Cup Champion looks for three in a row, or six if you want to count the Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 in the Xfinity Series. But for now, we will focus on the Food City 500, unless it rains for the third consecutive year.

Speaking of Kyle, he and Kurt Busch earn the most active wins at Bristol with five wins each. Kyle’s last win was Spring 2011 and Kurt’s was Spring 2006. Kurt finished outside the top 10 the last two races at Bristol, and finished ninth at Texas. Matt Kenseth is a four time winner and won last year’s Spring race after the long rain delay. Kenseth has finished outside the top 10 the last three races this season and has only one top 10 at Phoenix. Both he and Kurt will be looking for a huge turnaround at Bristol.

Carl Edwards won the Texas pole last week and will shoot for his second straight. Edwards has won two poles at Bristol and looks to become the second driver to win two poles this season. He is also a three time Bristol winner, the last win at the first rain delayed race in 2014. Both Penske drivers Joey Logano and Brad Keselowski have two wins each. Logano won two of the last three races overall, both of them Fall races, but Keselowski hasn’t won at Bristol since Spring 2012.

Single time Bristol winners are Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Kasey Kahne and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Harvick and Kahne are most likely looking for better finishes after Texas last week.

Six drivers were issued warnings after Texas. Austin Dillon and Kyle Larson failed pre-race laser inspection twice, and Dillon received his second of the season. Trevor Bayne failed three times, resulting into his first warning of the season and losing 15 minutes of practice time at Bristol. Kyle Busch and David Ragan failed pre-qualifying laser inspection twice, with Kyle getting his second warning of the season. Brad Keselowski failed three times, also costing him 15 minutes and given a first warning.

Every fourth warning results in losing their pit selection, then restarts afterwards

Credit all authors of images used in both article and as cover image : Bryan Law

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