Thursday, May 5, 2022

NASCAR postpones Cup Series races at Dover

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The sanctioning authority has fundamentally changed the schedule of the Cup Series. NASCAR has postponed the remainder of the 400-lap race at Dover Motor Speedway to May 2 due to heavy rainfall in the area.

NASCAR announced the news on May 1 after the drivers completed just 78 laps. There was a long red flag delay due to the rain but the aim was to finish the Cup Series race on the scheduled day. However, the rain lasted too long. It reached a point where drivers could not complete the remaining laps before darkness fell on a track with no lights.

The DuraMax Drydene 400 at Dover Motor Speedway will resume at 12 p.m. ET. FS1 will report when Larry McReynolds joins Mike Joy and Clint Bowyer. Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott will lead the field to the green flag after making the decision to stay on track while other drivers headed down pit lane to get fuel and tires.

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The Monster Mile has a reputation for claiming cars on major incidents due to its high speeds and steep slopes. However, there weren’t many incidents on the track during the first few laps. There was only one lead change before it started to rain.

Chris Buescher led the field on green after winning the Busch Light Pole on April 30th. He maintained his place at the front of the field for the first 19 laps, but the situation changed as he tried to get past lap traffic.

The number 17 driver lost control running behind BJ McLeod. He was able to save the stock car, which shook violently for a few moments, but lost momentum. Denny Hamlin came up behind Buescher and made the clean pass.

Hamlin continued to hold the advantage through pit stops and multiple bookings. He only lost his place under yellow by driving down the pit lane to get fresh tires and fuel. Larson, Elliott, Ryan Blaney, Martin Truex Jr., Christopher Bell, Aric Almirola and William Byron all chose to stay behind to gain position.

There were several drivers making positive moves at Dover Motor Speedway. Hamlin took first place while Kurt Busch went from 32nd overall to 20th over the first 78 laps. However, Joey Logano struggled early on at Monster Mile.

The No. 22 rider started 22nd but dropped to 26th early in stage one. He remained vocal about his struggles over the radio and later provided more context during a discussion with FOX Sports’ Jamie Little.

“We were jumping really hard, so we tried to fix that first because it just made all the problems worse,” Logano explained. “Just out of control. Loose to start the race and it seems like we got to the other side. But still not really fast. I need to fix the bouncing and keep swinging on this thing.

Team #22 cannot make adjustments during a red flag delay, but they have the ability to examine data. Logano can provide more information about his struggles on the track and then he and crew chief Paul Wolfe can try to find answers.

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