NASCAR Cup Series
Next Race: Ally 400
The Place: Nashville Superspeedway
The Date: Sunday, June 26
The Time: 5 p.m. ET
TV: NBC, 5 p.m. ET
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Distance: 399 miles (300 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 90),
Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 185), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 300)
NASCAR Xfinity Series
Next Race: Tennessee Lottery 250
The Place: Nashville Superspeedway
The Date: Saturday, June 25
The Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
TV: USA, 3 p.m. ET
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Distance: 250.04 miles (188 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 45),
Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 90), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 188)
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Next Race: Rackley Roofing 200
The Place: Nashville Superspeedway
The Date: Friday, June 24
The Time: 8 p.m. ET
TV: FS1, 7:30 p.m. ET
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Distance: 199.5 miles (150 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 45),
Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 95), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 150)
NASCAR Cup Series
Concrete Crunch: NASCAR Cup Series prepares for Nashville Superspeedway
After a weekend of rest, the competitors in the NASCAR Cup Series prepare for one of the schedule‘s most unique tracks — Nashville Superspeedway — with the Ally 400 on June 26 at 5 p.m. ET on NBC, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Channel 90). Cup competitors are challenged with grappling the D-shaped, concrete oval that stretches 1.33-miles on Sunday — the longest concrete surface track on the 2022 schedule.
Construction of Nashville Superspeedway was completed in 2001 and the facility was originally owned by Dover Motorsports. The first NASCAR national series race held at Nashville Superspeedway was a NASCAR Xfinity Series event on April 14, 2001. The first Xfinity race at Nashville was won by Greg Biffle driving a Ford for RFK Racing. The first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Nashville Superspeedway was on August 10, 2001 and was won by Scott Riggs driving a Dodge for truck owner Jim Smith. Nashville Superspeedway was purchased in 2021, and is currently owned and operated by Speedway Motorsports Inc.
Last season, Nashville Superspeedway hosted the inaugural NASCAR Cup Series race at the track, and the event was won by Hendrick Motorsport‘s driver and 2021 series champion Kyle Larson. The California native took the win with a Margin of Victory of 4.335 seconds over Ross Chastain in second. The race produced 14 lead changes among seven different drivers. Larson led the most laps of the race, spending 264 of the scheduled 300 laps out front (88%).
This weekend at Nashville, the NASCAR Cup Series on-track activity begins with practice from 6:30 p.m. — 7:30 p.m. ET on Friday, June 24 on the USA Network. Then Busch Light Pole Qualifying is on Saturday, June 25 at 1 p.m. — 2:30 p.m. ET on USA Network.
Hendrick Motorsports‘ Kyle Larson is back to defend Nashville victory
Nashville, Tennessee must hold a special place in Hendrick Motorsports‘ driver Kyle Larson‘s heart. Not only did he win the inaugural NASCAR Cup Series race at Nashville Speedway last season, but he also celebrated winning the 2021 series championship in downtown Nashville as well. Now the 29-year-old returns to the Tennessee track to defend his last season win and go back-to-back at Nashville Superspeedway.
This season, Larson has made 16 starts posting one win (Auto Club), two poles, six top fives and eight top 10s.
Defending a race win at a track is something Larson has only done once among his 17 series career victories, when he won three straight at Michigan International Speedway from 2016-2017.
This season hasn‘t been quite as bombastic as last year for Larson. Through 16 races in 2021, he had already banked three wins (Las Vegas, Charlotte and Sonoma) and Nashville was his fourth of ultimately a 10-win title winning season. Though he only has one win this season, Larson is most likely the favorite coming into this weekend at Nashville. He dominated the race leading 88% of the laps run and won the event from the fifth starting position by a whopping 4.335-seconds Margin of Victory.
Playoff Bubble: Stewart-Haas Racing teammates teeter the cutoff line
With Trackhouse Racing‘s Daniel Suárez becoming the 12th different driver to win this season and earn a spot in the Playoffs, that leaves just four positions open in the 16-driver NASCAR Cup Series postseason field with 10 races left to go in the regular season.
The four drivers currently in the Playoff hot seats that all drivers outside the postseason cutoff are coveting are Ryan Blaney (+95 points from the Playoff cutoff), Martin Truex Jr. (+65), Christopher Bell (+28) and Aric Almirola (+7).
Stewart-Haas Racing‘s Aric Almirola is currently in the most precarious position of the four drivers inside the Playoff cutoff, because he is in the 16th and final transfer position on points. But if a driver below him in the standings wins over the next 10 races, he could find himself bounced out of the Playoffs. Almirola currently has a seven-point advantage on his SHR teammate Kevin Harvick who is in 17th – the first spot outside the Playoffs cutoff. Both SHR teammates, Almirola and Harvick, made the Playoffs last season and both finished in the top five at Nashville.
Not far behind the SHR teammates are the Richard Childress Racing teammates — Tyler Reddick (-42 points from the cutoff) and Austin Dillon (-47 points) — and both are within striking distance of Almirola in the final transfer spot.
Of the drivers looking for their first NASCAR Cup Series win of the season, three have won previously at Nashville Superspeedway in either the NASCAR Xfinity Series or the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series — Kevin Harvick (2006, 2010 NXS), Austin Dillon (2011 NCWTS) and Brad Keselowski (2008, 2010 NXS).
Playoff Outlook: Drivers Without Wins
RankDriverPointsRace WinsStage WinsPlayoff PtsPts From Cutoff13Ryan Blaney5110449514Martin Truex Jr.4810336515Christopher Bell4440002816Aric Almirola423000717Kevin Harvick416000-718Tyler Reddick381022-4219Austin Dillon376000-4720Erik Jones368000-5521Michael McDowell330000-9322Chris Buescher318000-10523Justin Haley310000-11324Ricky Stenhouse Jr.288000-13525Bubba Wallace284011-13926Ty Dillon270000-15327Cole Custer262000-16128Harrison Burton #241000-18229Todd Gilliland #239000-18430Brad Keselowski22700-10-196
Three lengthy Playoff streaks in jeopardy
Three former NASCAR Cup Series champions, Martin Truex Jr. (2017), Kevin Harvick (2014) and Brad Keselowski (2012), have yet to secure their spots in this season‘s Playoffs, putting their lengthy postseason streaks in jeopardy as the series heads to Nashville Superspeedway for the Ally 400 (Sunday, June 26 at 5 p.m. ET on NBC, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), the 17th race of the 26-race regular season.
Joe Gibbs Racing‘s Martin Truex Jr., the 2017 NASCAR Cup Series champion, is currently in the best position in the standings of the three former champions, sitting in 14th in the Playoff outlook following Sonoma – 65 points up on the postseason cutoff. Truex is currently riding a streak of seven consecutive seasons of making the Playoffs and in total has earned a spot in the postseason in the NASCAR Cup Series nine times in his career (2021 ’20, ’19, ’18, ’17, ’16, ’15, ’12, ’07).
Truex is also on a winless streak that has reached 24 races (Richmond, 2021), and will look to win his way into the Playoffs this weekend at Nashville. In last season‘s Nashville Superspeedway race, Truex struggled but is hoping for this time around in the Next Gen car to be different. Last season, Truex started 35th and finished 22nd.
Stewart-Haas Racing‘s Kevin Harvick has had an impressive career, but the veteran hasn‘t visited Victory Lane in the series since Bristol in 2020 (59 races ago), and now finds himself 17th in the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series Playoff outlook, seven points back from his teammate Aric Almirola in the 16th and final Playoff transfer position on points. Harvick is also riding a streak of 12 consecutive seasons (most among active drivers) where he has earned a spot in the Playoffs and is currently tied with Jimmie Johnson, Denny Hamlin and Kurt Busch for the career-most postseason appearances at 15 each (Harvick‘s career Playoff seasons: 2021, ’20, ’19, ’18, ’17, ’16, ’15, ’14, ’13, ’12, ’11, ’10, ’08, ’07, ’06).
Harvick ran well at Nashville last season and might be worth keeping an eye on this weekend. In last season‘s inaugural Cup race at Nashville, Harvick started 12th and raced his way up to a fifth-place finish.
Following a penalty at the beginning of the season, RFK Racing‘s Brad Keselowski has been buried in the point standings and now faces the reality that his streak of eight consecutive seasons of earning a spot in the Playoffs is in jeopardy. In total, Keselowski has earned 10 career appearances in the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs (2021 ’20, ’19, ’18, ’17, ’16, ’15, ’14, ’12, ’11).
Keselowski is currently 30th in the driver standings (the last postseason eligible position), 196 points back from Aric Almirola in the final Playoff transfer position. Keselowski is mathematically eligible to point his way into the Playoffs still, but it will be nearly impossible. The easiest way into the postseason for Keselowski would be to win, but he too is on a winless streak that has reached 42 races (Talladega, 2021).
In last season‘s Nashville Cup race, Keselowski started 15th and finished 23rd.
Jimmie Johnson currently holds the record in the NASCAR Cup Series for the longest streak of consecutive Playoff appearances at 15 straight seasons from 2004-2018.
NASCAR Cup Series, Etc.
Next Gen is producing some great competition in 2022 – Action-packed racing has been the norm this season thanks to the introduction of the Next Gen car in the NASCAR Cup Series and with 16 races in the books, the stats keep adding up.
A total of 12 different race winners through the first 16 races of the 2022 season ties the 2000 and 2012 seasons for second-most winners through 16 races in the Modern Era (1972-2022); behind the 2003 season with 13 winners. Of the 12 different race winners this season, four are first-time Cup Series winners: Team Penske‘s Austin Cindric (Daytona 500), Stewart-Haas Racing‘s Chase Briscoe (Phoenix) and Trackhouse Racing‘s Ross Chastain (COTA) and Daniel Suárez (Sonoma). The NASCAR Cup Series record for the most first-time winners in a single season in the Modern Era (1972-2022) is five first-time winners, and it has occurred three times — 2001, 2002 and 2011.
The 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season has also produced 786 green flag passes for the lead; the series-most through the first 16 races of a season since the Loop Data statistic was initially tabulated in 2007 (the last 16 seasons). The 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season is averaging 49.1 green flag passes for the lead per race — up +35.3% from the 16-year average of 31.8 per race.
On top of all that, seven tracks have set records in green flag passes for the lead in the NASCAR Cup Series this season; including Circuit of The Americas (30 GFPL), Atlanta Motor Speedway (141 GFPL), Las Vegas Motor Speedway (57 GFPL), Bristol Motor Speedway Dirt (20 GFPL) Darlington Raceway (28 GFPL), Kansas Speedway (41 GFPL) and Charlotte Motor Speedway (64 GFPL).
Grammy-winning country duo Brothers Osbourne to perform pre-race at Nashville Superspeedway — Country music duo Brothers Osborne, who won their first GRAMMY Award this year, will hit the stage and entertain fans at Nashville Superspeedway prior to the Ally 400 NASCAR Cup Series race on Sunday, June 26.
Brothers Osborne (siblings John and TJ Osborne) will perform at approximately 2 p.m. from the pre-race concert stage located on pit road.
“As the home for NASCAR Cup Series racing in Middle Tennessee, we understand the importance of infusing the heart of Music City into our events,” said Erik Moses, Nashville Superspeedway‘s president. “We‘re excited to have the Brothers Osborne turn up the heat on our #NASHCAR weekend and know the fans in attendance from across the country will enjoy this award-winning superstar duo before America‘s best drivers take the track for the Ally 400.”
Global music superstar Kane Brown named Grand Marshal of Ally 400 at Nashville — Five-time American Music Award winner Kane Brown will serve as the grand marshal for the NASCAR Cup Series race (Ally 400) at Nashville Superspeedway on Sunday, June 26.
Brown, known for the chart-topping hits “One Mississippi,” and “Be Like That,” as well his latest hit “Like I Love Country Music,” will give NASCAR‘s top drivers the command to start their engines before the 4 p.m. (CT) race.
Recently named to the Time100 Most Influential People in the World List, the Chattanooga, Tenn. native first made history in October 2017 as the first artist to lead all five of Billboard‘s main country charts simultaneously and has gone on to amass seven #1 hits in country radio.
“We can‘t wait to welcome Kane Brown to Nashville Superspeedway next month as part of our celebration around the Ally 400,” said Erik Moses, Nashville Superspeedway‘s president. “As Middle Tennessee‘s home for NASCAR racing and entertainment, we are thrilled to be able to host America‘s top drivers and top entertainers at the same time! We look forward to ensuring that Kane experiences the best that #NASHCAR has to offer this June!”
WWE Superstar Sheamus to be honorary starter at Nashville Superspeedway — A Dublin, Ireland, native, Sheamus is a four-time WWE world champion, as well as a former U.S. Champion and Tag Team Champion, and this weekend the wrestling superstar has been tapped by Nashville Superspeedway to wave the green flag to start the Ally 400 as America‘s top drivers take on NASCAR‘s biggest concrete track for the second consecutive year.
“We‘re looking forward to welcoming Sheamus and his legion of fans to Nashville Superspeedway for our race weekend,” said Erik Moses, Nashville Superspeedway‘s president and general manager. “Sheamus‘ athletic feats have earned him a well-earned worldwide following. We can‘t wait for him to experience #NASHCAR in all its glory and feel the thrill of waving the green flag from the flag stand later this month!”
First-Time Winners aplenty in 2022 — Trackhouse Racing‘s Daniel Suárez became the fourth different first-time winner in the NASCAR Cup Series this season after grabbing the victory at Sonoma Raceway, joining Team Penske‘s Austin Cindric (Daytona), Stewart-Haas Racing‘s Chase Briscoe (Phoenix) and Trackhouse Racing‘s Ross Chastain (COTA).
If the NASCAR Cup Series were to see another first-time winner this season, the 2022 season would tie the 2001, 2002 and 2011 seasons for the most first-time Cup Series winners in a single season in the Modern Era (1972-2022) at five first-time winners each.
First-time Cup winners 2001: Michael Waltrip (Daytona), Kevin Harvick (Atlanta), Elliott Sadler (Bristol), Ricky Craven (Martinsville) and Robby Gordon (New Hampshire).
First-time Cup winners 2002: Kurt Busch (Bristol), Jimmie Johnson (Auto Club), Ryan Newman (New Hampshire), Jamie McMurray (Charlotte) and Johnny Benson (Rockingham).
First-time Cup winners 2011: Trevor Bayne (Daytona), Regan Smith (Darlington), David Ragan (Daytona), Paul Menard (Indianapolis) and Marcos Ambrose (Watkins Glen).
NASCAR Xfinity Series
NASCAR Xfinity Series heads to Music City
After a two-week break, the NASCAR Xfinity Series will head back to the track for the Tennessee Lottery 250 at Nashville Superspeedway on Saturday June 25 at 3:30 p.m. ET on the USA Network, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Channel 90).
The Xfinity Series found its way back to Nashville Superspeedway last year after a 10-year hiatus. In last year‘s race, it was Cup series regular Kyle Busch that made the trip to Victory Lane after leading 122 of the 189 laps.
Nashville Superspeedway has hosted 22 Xfinity Series races. The inaugural race was on April 14, 2001 and was won by Greg Biffle.
After the 2001 race, the Xfinity Series raced at the Nashville track twice a year through the 2011 season. Prior to last season‘s race, Carl Edwards was the most recent winner and currently sits as the winningest driver at the track (2006, 2007 sweep, 2011 sweep). He also holds the record for most top fives (11), most top 10s (12) and most lead lap finishes (13).
In total, there have been 15 different pole winners and 14 different race winners. Joey Logano is both the youngest pole winner and race winner in the Xfinity Series, having won the pole at 18 years, 0 months and 14 days and the race the following year at 18 years, 10 months and 18 days old.
The on-track action is set to begin with practice on Friday, June 24 at 5:35 p.m. ET followed by qualifying at 12 p.m. ET on Saturday, June 25 on the USA Network.
Nashville: A place of “firsts”
Nashville Superspeedway has been a place of firsts for some drivers — seven of the 14 race winners were first-time winners when the series competed at the track from 2001-2011.
SeriesTrackFirst-Time WinnersDate1XfinityNashvilleGreg BiffleSaturday, April 14, 20012XfinityNashvilleScott RiggsSaturday, April 13, 20023XfinityNashvilleJack SpragueSaturday, June 8, 20024XfinityNashvilleJason LefflerSaturday, June 12, 20045XfinityNashvilleReed SorensonSaturday, March 26, 20056XfinityNashvilleClint BowyerSunday, June 12, 20057XfinityNashvilleBrad KeselowskiSaturday, June 7, 2008
This weekend, we could see an eighth winner added to the first-timers list as 25 of the 41 Xfinity Series drivers entered for this weekend‘s Tennessee Lottery 250 have yet to post a series win.
Nashville ringers to watch this weekend
Although a fairly new track for many of these NASCAR Xfinity Series drivers, there is one driver in particular that has been around the series long enough to have some experience to look back on — JR Motorsport‘s Justin Allgaier.
Allgaier has seven starts at Nashville Superspeedway, posting four top fives and four top 10s. He has won a pole at the Tennessee track (2010) and put up a good fight in last year‘s race, going back and forth for the lead against Kyle Busch in the last 38 laps. Ultimately, Busch took the lead in the last two laps and Allgaier finished runner-up. Allgaier has already posted a win this season at Darlington, a track that is almost identical in length to Nashville Superspeedway, so perhaps he‘ll bring home his second victory this weekend.
Josh Berry only has one start at Nashville but is sure to give his JR Motorsports teammate, Allgaier, a run for his money — just as he‘s done all season long. Last season at Nashville, Berry raced his way up to a fourth-place finish after starting in the 22nd position and has been neck-and-neck with Allgaier on tracks in the mile/ mile and a half range this season. In Las Vegas (1.5-mile track), Berry finished fourth and Allgaier finished fifth. In Dover (one mile track), Berry won the race and Allgaier finished runner-up. In Texas (1.5-mile track), Allgaier had a fourth-place finish and not far behind was Berry in seventh. Given that these teammates tend to not stray far from each other on the track, fans can be sure to see the pair racing near the front in Saturday afternoon‘s Tennessee Lottery 250.
Another driver sure to impress in Music City this weekend is Kaulig Racing‘s AJ Allmendinger. Like Berry, Allmendinger has only given the Nashville track one go, but finished in the top-five (fifth). Allmendinger has been hot all season long, already with two wins under his belt (COTA, Portland), seven top fives and 13 top 10s. Plus, he‘s coming off of a win in Portland so let‘s see if he can carry the momentum into this weekend‘s race.
Playoff Race: Sieg opens up huge points cushion over Alfredo
With 12 races left in the NASCAR Xfinity Series regular season, the battle for the final five remaining Playoff spots is still very much up in the air, but one thing is for certain is that RSS Racing‘s Ryan Sieg, currently in the 12th and final transfer position on points, has built up a hefty points cushion on the competitors outside the postseason cutoff.
Heading into Nashville Superspeedway this weekend, Sieg is up 58 points on Our Motorsport‘s Anthony Alfredo in 13th, 67 points up on Jeb Burton in 14th and 71 points up on Brett Moffitt in 15th.
If Sieg can stay consistent over the next 12 races he will be hard to catch with that big of a points cushion, but if a driver below him in the standings were to win, he could be bounced out of Playoff contention.
Looking to Nashville Superspeedway this weekend for the Tennessee Lottery 250, Sieg made his series track debut at Nashville last season; he started 13th and finished 16th. Of the drivers outside the postseason cutoff looking to catch Sieg and make the Playoffs, Jeb Burton (seventh) posted the best finish in last season‘s race at the 1.33-mile track followed by Jeremy Clements (11th), Brett Moffitt (23rd), Myatt Snider (31st) and Brandon Brown (35th). Anthony Alfredo (-58 points from Sieg) and Sheldon Creed (-73 points behind Sieg) will be making their series track debuts at Nashville Superspeedway this weekend.
NASCAR Xfinity Series, Etc.
Julia Landauer to make Xfinity debut in New Hampshire — Alpha Prime Racing announced this week that Julia Landauer will be making her NASCAR Xfinity Series debut at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Saturday, July 16th, driving the No.45 Chevrolet for Alpha Prime Racing.
“We‘ve been trying to get Julia in our racecar all year long,” said Tommy Joe Martins, GM of Alpha Prime Racing. “Ever since her days in a NASCAR West car, I felt like she deserved an opportunity at this level. I am really glad we were able to put it all together and give her a shot here at Alpha Prime.”
Sammy Smith set to start eight races in the Xfinity Series — Sammy Smith, the reigning ARCA Menards Series East champion with Joe Gibbs Racing has now been called up to pilot the No. 18 JGR Toyota in select races in the NASCAR Xfinity Series.
His Xfinity Series career debut will be at Road America on Saturday, July 2. He will also be behind the wheel for the races at Pocono Raceway, Michigan International Speedway, Watkins Glen International, Kansas Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, Martinsville Speedway and Phoenix Raceway.
The 18-year-old driver will be the seventh to pilot the No.18 this season after Trevor Bayne, Ryan Truex, Drew Dollar, John Hunter Nemechek, Bubba Wallace and Connor Mosack.
2022 Xfinity Season Competition Update — The 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series season has placed fans at the edge of their seats all year long and the stats are here to back it up.
The 2022 season has seen nine different pole winners and nine different race winners. Plus, the 2022 season had produced an average of 7.14 leaders per race and an average of 13.0 lead changes per race through the first 14 races of the year. In total, 32 different drivers have led laps this season in the NASCAR Xfinity Series — the most since 2018 (38).
In addition, the 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series season has produced 355 green flag passes for the lead, second-most since the inception of the Loop Data stat in 2007; behind only the 2015 season‘s 364. The first 14 races in the 2022 Xfinity Series season have also produced 33,350 total green flag passes throughout the field, the series-most since the statistic was initially tabulated in 2007; the next highest was the 2012 season with 28,533.
Looking to Nashville Superspeedway this weekend, the 2021 Xfinity Series race at the 1.33-mile track generated 12 lead changes among five different leaders. Joe Gibbs Racing‘s Kyle Busch led the most laps in last season‘s Xfinity race at Nashville with 122 of the scheduled 189 laps out front (64.5%). Busch won the event.
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Team DGR‘s Todd Gilliland wins Knoxville, steals opportunity to win a spot in the Playoffs
Team DGR called upon the expertise of NASCAR Cup Series driver Todd Gilliland to pilot their No. 17 Ford at Knoxville Raceway last weekend and the decision paid off big-time with a trip to Victory Lane, the first for the organization this season. Ultimately the win was great for Gilliland, but for the drivers vying for the final five spots in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs, it stole a chance for one of the championship contenders to lock themselves into the postseason with a win. Now, the series heads to Nashville Superspeedway for the Rackley Roofing 200 on Friday, June 24 at 8 p.m. ET (FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) with just three races left in the regular season to decide who will make up the 10-driver Playoff field and who will win the Regular Season Championship.
With five drivers securing their spots on wins this season, that leaves five Playoff spots still up for grabs and since there are only three races left in the regular season, we know at least two of the Playoff spots will be filled by drivers on points.
The following five drivers have clinched a spot in the 10-driver postseason field: John Hunter Nemechek, Zane Smith, Ben Rhodes, Chandler Smith and Stewart Friesen.
Can Clinch Via Points:
If there is a repeat winner or a win by a driver who cannot advance to the Playoffs, the following driver(s) could clinch by being 111 points above the fourth winless driver in the standings. The same point requirements will hold true if a new win comes from either Ty Majeski, Christian Eckes or Carson Hocevar this weekend.
Ty Majeski: Could only clinch with help or a Christian Eckes win and help.
Camping World Truck Series on the Nashville concrete
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will return to Music City, U.S.A. for the Rackley Roofing 200 at Nashville Superspeedway this Friday, June 24 at 8 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
Nashville Superspeedway is a 1.33-mile, D-shaped, all concrete oval located just outside Nashville, Tennessee. The first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Nashville Superspeedway was on August 10, 2001, and the race was won by Scott Riggs driving a Dodge for team owner Jim Smith. Riggs dominated the event leading 131 of the 150 laps (87.3%).
In total, Nashville Superspeedway has hosted the Camping World Truck Series 14 times producing 11 different pole winners and 12 different race winners from 2001 to 2011 and 2021. ThorSport Racing‘s Matt Crafton is the only series driver to make starts in all 14 previous Camping World Truck Series races at Nashville.
On-track activity for the Truck series will begin on Friday, June 24 with practice at 4 p.m. ET followed by qualifying at 4:30 p.m. ET on FS1. Nashville has produced 11 different Truck Series pole winners all-time, led by Mike Skinner (2005, 2007), Kyle Busch (2010, 2011), and Todd Bodine (2008, 2010) with two poles each.
Johnny Benson (2006, 2008) and Kyle Busch (2010, 2011) lead the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in wins at Nashville Superspeedway with two victories each. Last season‘s Nashville race was won by Team DGR‘s Ryan Preece, leading just eight laps of the total event.
Regular Season Champion Watch: Three races to go
The battle for the 2022 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Regular Season Championship is heating up with just three races left until the Playoffs kickoff. The top four drivers in the series driver standings following Knoxville Raceway are separated by only 14 points, with Kyle Busch Motorsport‘s John Hunter Nemechek in the standings lead.
Kyle Busch Motorsports‘ John Hunter Nemechek won last season‘s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Regular Season Championship and looks to become the first driver since the inception of the regular season title in the series in 2017 to win multiple championships. Former Camping World Truck Series Regular Season Champions include Christopher Bell (2017), Johnny Sauter (2018), Grant Enfinger (2019), Austin Hill (2020) and John H. Nemechek (2021).
Nemechek currently holds the points standings lead by five points over Front Motorsports‘ driver Zane Smith in second, followed by ThorSport Racing‘s and 2021 series champion Ben Rhodes (-10) in third and Nemechek‘s KBM teammate Chandler Smith (-14) in fourth.
All four of the regular season title contenders this season made their series track debuts at Nashville Superspeedway last season. Zane Smith had the best finish of the four in fourth, followed by Rhodes (seventh), Nemechek (10th) and Chandler Smith (13th).
Playoff Bubble: Five spots left to fill in the next three races
With three races left in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series regular season, time is winding down to make the Playoffs. As it stands, the last two drivers seated ninth and 10th in the series driver standings are Grant Enfinger and Matt Crafton. In Enfinger‘s first season back with a new-look GMS Racing, he has racked up a solid three top-fives and seven top-10s for the year. Crafton, a long-tenured veteran on ThorSport Racing‘s roster, sits just above the cutoff line with one top-five and seven top-10s. Heading into Nashville, Crafton will look to utilize his extensive experience of 14 starts at the track to distance himself from the cutoff line while Enfinger hopes to remain consistent.
Sitting below the cutline include a mix of eager drivers hoping to race for the championship. Derek Kraus of McAnally Hilgemann Racing leads this group sitting 27 points back from the cutoff line. The driver of the No. 19 Chevrolet had a solid weekend at Knoxville, starting the race from the pole position and finishing sixth. Kraus and his team aim to carry this speed into Nashville Superspeedway, a track where he also won the pole in 2021 and brought home a fifth-place finish.
Matt DiBenedetto sits just behind Kraus in the Playoff outlook standings at twelfth. In his first year driving the No. 25 Chevrolet for Rackley W.A.R., DiBenedetto has yet to finish a race in the top-five but has garnered six top 10s on the year. Coming into Nashville, he has two previous starts in two different series. He finished 10th driving part-time for Joe Gibbs Racing‘s NASCAR Xfinity Series team in 2010 along with a 24th-place finish last year in the NASCAR Cup Series for Wood Brothers Racing. Being 43 points back from the cutline, DiBenedetto will need to lock in competitively for the next three races if he wants to point his way into the Playoffs.
In a similar situation, Tanner Gray hopes to gain ground on those ahead of him with a dwindling number of races to do so. The 21-year-old from Artesia, New Mexico sits 50 points back from potentially making the Playoffs in his third year of full-time Camping World Truck Series racing. The No. 15 Team DGR Ford has shown glimpses of speed with Gray behind the wheel. His most recent finish at Nashville, 18th, came after having to start from the rear of the field. He will look to make the same kind of headway toward the front this weekend as he hopes to add another Ford into the Playoff bracket.
Tyler Ankrum, 14th in the series Playoff outlook, still has a shot to point his way into the Playoffs. Coming off two straight top-10 finishes at Sonoma and Knoxville; the driver of the No. 16 Hattori Racing Enterprises Toyota has had a streak of solid runs. Ankrum will need to improve on a 23rd-place finish last year at Nashville if he hopes to keep his Playoff hopes alive.
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Etc.
2022 Camping World Truck Series Season Competition Update — The 2022 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season has been action-packed all year long and the stats back it up. The 2022 season has seen eight different pole winners and 10 different race winners. Plus, the 2022 season had produced an average of 7.08 leaders per race and an average of 12.62 lead changes per race through the first 13 races of the year. In total, 26 different drivers have led laps this season in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
In addition, the 2022 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season has produced 272 green flag passes for the lead, the fourth-most since the inception of the Loop Data stat in 2007; behind the 2020 season (359), 2018 (343) and 2019 (330). The first 13 races in the 2022 Camping World Truck Series season have also produced 20,022 total green flag passes throughout the field, the third-most since the statistic was initially tabulated in 2007; behind the 2020 season (20,870) and 2021 (20,281).
Looking to Nashville Superspeedway this weekend, the 2021 Camping World Truck Series race at the 1.33-mile track generated eight lead changes among six different leaders.
Sunoco Rookie of the Year Update: Alan retakes rookie standings lead — The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings had another shakeup after this weekend‘s dirt race at Knoxville Raceway. After recently falling back to second in the standings, Lawless Alan is back atop the rookie leaderboard. This comes after another top-20 finish this season, placing 18th at Knoxville. Alan and the No. 45 Niece Motorsports team now have seven total top-20 finishes, the most among active full-time rookies.
Now ranked second in rookie points is GMS Racing‘s Jack Wood. The 21-year-old driver of the No. 24 Chevrolet brought his team a 21st-place finish on Saturday at Knoxville Raceway. Wood trails Alan by nine points in the rookie standings. Looking to Nashville this weekend, Wood is hoping to build on his solid run last year where he started on the front row and finished 11th.
Returning to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series this Friday is part-time Kyle Busch Motorsports driver Corey Heim. As the only rookie to win a race this season and one of two multi-time winners in the Camping World Truck Series, Heim looks to pick up right where he left off at World Wide Technology Raceway and compete for the win in the No. 51 Toyota Tundra. Driving only a partial schedule this season, Heim has still managed to previously lead the rookie standings having won two (Atlanta, WWTR) out of the six races he has ran this season. After having the last two races off, Heim will work to make up for missed time as he wishes to take back control of the rookie standings. With no previous experience at Nashville, however, it will be no easy feat.
Dean Thompson of Niece Motorsports sits fourth in rookie standings. The 20-year-old from Anaheim, California came away from Knoxville with a 23rd-place finish for his No. 40 Chevrolet. Like Heim in having zero experience at Nashville, Thompson hopes to leave the weekend with a greater standing on the rookie leaderboard and more experience at a new track for him. The same can be said for CR7 Motorsports rookie Blaine Perkins. After a 25th-place outing at Knoxville, the 22-year-old from Bakersfield, California will look to gain any momentum he can find for his No. 9 Chevrolet Silverado team heading into the final stretch of the regular season.
— NASCAR —