RACE PREVIEW

ALLSTAR18

MONSTER ENERGY OPEN

MAY 19th, 6PM ET on FOX SPORTS 1 TV

MONSTER ENERGY ALL STAR RACE

MAY 19th, 8PM ET on FOX SPORTS 1 TV

CHARLOTTE MOTOR SPEEDWAY

1.5 Miles, 24 Degrees of Banking

Saturday night is NASCAR’s All Star evening. Since we see the best drivers every week why have an All Star evening? Because it is a throwback to old school: Saturday Night heat racing, where most of these drivers came from, done on an incredibly massive scale. First up on Saturday night we’ll see the MONSTER ENERGY OPEN, a race for all drivers who do not qualify for the following race, the MONSTER ENERGY ALL STAR RACE. (In other words the Monster Energy Open is for drivers who are in the top 50 in points that are not eligible for the Monster Energy All Star Race.) The Monster Energy Open will be run in three segments. The first two segments both 20 laps and a third segment of 10 laps. Each segment winner will advance to the Monster Energy All Star Race along with a driver voted on by the fans. In total we’ll see four drivers come back later Saturday night.

At 8PM Charlotte time Saturday night we’ll see the Monster Energy Star Race. We’ll see it with a very big change this year. Along with the four drivers from the Sprint Showdown, the Monster Energy All Star Race is made up of drivers who won a race in 2017, drivers who have won so far in 2018, and past winners of this race. The race will be run in four stages, the first stage will be 30 laps, the next two 20 laps each and the final a 10 lap shootout. Each winner of the first three stages gets a spot in the final stage. The winner of stage four is the 2018 Monster Energy All Star Race winner. It all adds up to a gripping fight-to-the-front finish for $1 million. The last 10 laps will be a crazy dash for cash. I have seen drivers do things on the track in this race they would never do in a points’ race. So why race at all? For the prestige of winning, for a piece of the over $2 plus million purse-$1 million to the winner, also because that’s what NASCAR drivers do: race to win and race just for the sake of racin’.  And the big change for this year? The rules package the cars will run. Restrictor plates will be in use at 1.5-mile Charlotte Motor Speedway, along with a 6-inch high spoiler (with two 12-inch ears), a 2014 style splitter and aero ducts.

Tuesday look for our Top 10 drivers on intermediate tracks.

 

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