CAN AM 500

November 11th, 2:30PM Charlotte Time NBC TV
1 Mile Turn 1&2 10 Degrees of Banking, Turn 3&4 12 Degrees of Banking

Playoff Race #9

What a place to help decide the Monster Energy Cup Championship, a 1 mile flat track. This year we have a change, the back stretch “Dog Leg” is the front stretch “Dog Leg” and the old front stretch is the back stretch. From the air it now actually looks more like other tracks on the circuit. But in reality is not similar to any of them. This is a track where every turn is slightly different. There is no such thing as “get your car right and cruise around.” Most drivers have a good set-up for turns 1 & 2 or for turns 3 & 4. Some try to get a compromise somewhere in between, and some drivers are simply trying to find any set-up that gets them fast and keeps them off the wall. No matter what your strategy is, this track can be very, very tough. Rookies typically struggle here. And to add to the challenge, this race will help eliminate four of the eight finalists for the Championship. #22 Joey Logano, and #4 Kevin Harvick are locked in with wins, #78 Martin Truex and #18 Kyle Busch look good to go to Miami by virtue of points. #41 Kurt Busch, #9 Chase Elliott #10 Aric Almirola and #14 Clint Bowyer  have the bottom four spots and really need to win to lock into one of the two final spots.  Kevin Harvick who has won six of the last ten races appears to have the inside track on that win. His team Stewart Haas Racing has won 30% of the races here in the last ten years. Hendrick Motorsports has won 25% of the races here and cars with engines built by the Hendrick Motor shop have won 45% of the races in the same ten year window. #20 Matt Kenseth and Joe Gibbs Racing won here last year and in March we saw #4 Kevin Harvick bring his Stewart Haas  Racing Ford to victory lane for the ninth time. Advantage Kevin Harvick. Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick will compete next week for the Championship, who will compete against them? We’ll find out of Sunday.

Tuesday look for our Top 10 flat track drivers in advance of the Can Am 500 from Phoenix Int’l Raceway.