Everything you need to know about Saturday’s Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway, in three minutes:
Three things to watch
1. The all-star race’s format has been tweaked in the hopes of producing late drama. It will consist of three segments of 50, 50 and 13 laps. The cars finishing either ninth, 10th or 11th (based on a random draw) in the second segment will start the final segment at the rear of the field with new tires. The rest of the field will start at the front with old tires.
2. NASCAR also has taken off addition downforce and sideforce from the cars, which will make them somewhat slower but more challenging to handle by the drivers.
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3. The “start your engines” command will come from inside the No. 14 Chevy. Tony Stewart, who will be driving in his final All-Star Race, is the grand marshal and will give the command.
▪ The weather has been issue this weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The hope is that things will dry out enough that the All-Star Race will be run, even though most of the other on-track events were affected.
▪ Matt Kenseth said Friday that most drivers would try to finish 12th in the second segment, guaranteeing they won’t start at the rear but at or near the front of the field. With such a short, 13-lap, sprint to the finish, he might be right.
▪ The field will be completed by the two drivers who finish at the top of a fan’s vote.
Three picks for your fantasy team:
Kyle Busch: Don’t be fooled by his unfamiliar number (75, for the anniversary of his sponsor Mars Inc.); he’ll be as strong as ever.
Jimmie Johnson: He has four all-star victories, no other active driver has more than one.
Denny Hamlin: If defending champ wins again Saturday, he would join Johnson (2012-13) and Davey Allison (1991-92) as the only drivers to win two in a row.
He said it
“First of all, I want to win, but right after that what is the most exciting for the fans and for the people tuning in and the people in the grandstands watching it to put on a good show – I don’t know what that is.” – Matt Kenseth, on the format changes.
Sprint All-Star Race
Where/when: Charlotte Motor Speedway, Concord. Green flag: 9:26 p.m.
Track type: 1.5 mile paved tri-oval.
Race distance: 169.5 miles, or 113 laps.
Weather: Low of 56; 50 percent chance of rain.
TV: Fox Sports 1.
Radio: Motor Racing Network.
1 Jamie McMurray
41 Kurt Busch
2 Brad Keselowski
48 Jimmie Johnson
4 Kevin Harvick
75 Kyle Busch
5 Kasey Kahne
78 Martin Truex Jr.
11 Denny Hamlin
88 Dale Earnhardt Jr
14 Tony Stewart
19 Carl Edwards
20 Matt Kenseth
22 Joey Logano
TBA (fan vote)
31 Ryan Newman
TBA (fan vote)