Bristol Motor Speedway will play host to today’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Food City 500. It’s the eighth event of the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season.

Rain in the area could force the event to be delayed well into the night today, or possibly even to tomorrow.

Tempers are always high in the close-quarters of short track racing, and with the bottom lane as the preferred line, drivers will be fighting to stay in that groove.

In recent years, the concrete track surface has had its bottom lane treated with a traction compound called PJ1, designed to increase grip in that part of the track. Some drivers love it, others hate it, but all of them have to deal with it.

Kyle Larson is certainly one who wants the groove to expand away from the bottom lane.

The Race

Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway, Bristol, TN

0.533 mile concrete oval

500 laps / 250 miles

Green Flag: 1:08pm EDT (moved up an hour due to threat of rain)

Stages end: lap 125, lap 250, lap 500 (finish)

Coverage: FOX, PRN, SiriusXM

The Field

Kyle and Kurt Busch locked up the front row during qualifying on Friday, however Kurt had an accident with 5 minutes left in final practice on Saturday and will surrender his No. 2 starting spot for going to a backup car.

39 cars entered for the 40-car field, so all will race today.

Full qualifying results from NASCAR via Jayski.com.

Kyle Busch also posted the fastest 10-lap average speed in final practice, to backup his No. 1 qualifying performance.

Front Row Racing made a splash in final practice with both of their cars finishing in the top five of practice speeds. David Ragan posted the fastest lap in final practice, while Michael McDowell had the 5th fastest time.

The Favorite

Kyle Busch is the heavy favorite to win today’s race, according to both Vegas Insider and Bovada.

Last Time at Bristol

Jimmie Johnson captured the win in last spring’s race at Bristol, which was postponed to Monday due to rain. It was his second win in a row, after winning at Texas the week prior. Clint Bowyer, winner at Martinsville two weeks ago, finished second to Johnson.

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The Author

Braxton Crisp

Braxton Crisp

Braxton Crisp is a multi-time award-winning journalist, earning recognition from the Associated Press Broadcasters Association of the Virginias and the National Broadcasting Society, amongst others. He earned a degree in Broadcast Journalism from Marshall University in West Virginia, and has extensive writing and broadcast experience, covering high school, Division I college, and professional sports for over five years.

Originally from Huntington, WV, Braxton now resides in Metro Detroit with his wife.

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