Welcome NASCAR race fans to my NASCAR blog. Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, AZ. held the second race of the NASCAR Season and then reconstructed the track. NASCAR comes back to this newly reconstructed track with a lot of unknowns. It is basically a new track on the circuit. NASCAR spent a lot of time putting rubber onto the track before the practices began.
Friday was hot and the track was slippery for practice. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers took to the track on Friday for practice for the Kobalt Tools 500K race on Sunday. 500 kilometers is just over 300 miles at this one mile track. After a few laps into practice, 18 of Kyle Busch had to change the engine in his car sponsored by Interstate Batteries. He will start the race on Sunday from the rear. The cars had different paint schemes on their cars. Veterans Day was Friday and many are honoring the Veterans. 48 Jimmie Johnson has the Kobalt Tools logo on his black car with white stripes for this race. A new track and new cars. 31 Jeff Burton and 17 Matt Kenseth were fastest in the first practice.
The NASCAR Nationwide Series is also at the Phoenix International Raceway this weekend. They also practiced on Friday for the WypAll 200 race on Saturday. There were a few changes in the drivers of the Nationwide cars. 18 is Joey Logano, while 20 is Rookie Ryan Truex. (Kyle had to sit this race out, so there should be some good racing without a lot of antics showing us how good he thinks he is. And championship contenders won’t have to worry about him showing them up and taking them out.) 6 Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. and 88 Aric Almirola were fastest in practice.
The tire Goodyear picked for the racing is a hard one. They won’t have to change tires too often, but this fan has to wonder if a softer tire wouldn’t give them more grip on the track. With a slick track and hard tires, there were out there ice skating! The track should rubber up, giving them a second groove to pass with, but that is not a given.
Saturday was Coors Light Pole Qualifying for both Series’. 88 Aric Almirola sits on the Pole for the WypAll 200 race with a speed of 132.910 mph and 27.086 seconds around this one mile track with 60 Cup driver Carl Edwards next to him on the front row. Jennifer Jo Cobb, Carl Long, Josh Wise and Daryl Haar did not qualify for the race. For the Kobalt Tools 500K race, 17 Matt Kenseth sits on the pole with a speed of 137.101 mph and 26.258 seconds around the one mile track. This is his third Pole of the season. 43 A. J. Allmendinger starts next to him on the front row. Scott Riggs, David Stremme and Andy Lally had to go home.
Saturday late afternoon was the Nationwide race and they put a lot of rubber on the track so that a new groove came onto the track. That was followed by the K&N Pro Series West race, with Cup driver Dave Blaney’s son Ryan winning his first race, the first time he raced in the West Series. Great racing on his part. I’ll be back with a race review of the Nationwide race.
Sunday morning saw the track with puddles on it. That means all the rubber that was put on the track from the races is now washed off and the Sprint Cup race will have a new, green track to race on. Back to square one! Carl Edwards, the points leader by three points had a practice session by racing in the Nationwide race, as did Joey Logano, Clint Bowyer and Brad Keselowski. They may have learned something, although the cars are different. We shall see what happens later on in the day on Sunday. I shall review that race also.
Brought to you by Sheila Hawley. I love NASCAR racing.
Tags: Coors Light Pole Qualifying, K&N Pro Series, Kobalt Tools 500K, NASCAR blog, NASCAR Nationwide Series, NASCAR race fans, NASCAR racing, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Phoenix International Raceway, WypAll 200