NASCAR Cup Series News & Notes – Dover Motor Speedway

Next up on the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series schedule is Dover Motor Speedway for Sunday’s DuraMAX Drydene 400 presented by RelaDyne (3 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio); the 11th race of the year.

Aptly nicknamed the Monster Mile, Dover Motor Speedway is a one-mile concrete paved oval located in Dover, Delaware. Dover Motor Speedway, originally known as Dover Downs International Speedway, has hosted 103 NASCAR Cup Series races dating back to the inaugural event on July 6, 1969. The first Dover Cup Series race was won by NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty driving a Petty Enterprises Ford (115.772 mph, 02:35:28). Petty actually won the first two Cup events at the track (1969, 1970).

In total, the 103 NASCAR Cup Series races at Dover Motor Speedway have produced 42 different pole winners and 39 different race winners. NASCAR Hall of Famer David Pearson leads the series in poles at Dover Motor Speedway with six (1969, 1973 sweep, 1974, 1975, 1981). Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin leads all active series drivers in poles at Dover with four (2012, 2013, 2015, 2019). Seven of the 42 NASCAR Cup Series Dover Motor Speedway pole winners are active this weekend.

Active Dover Pole Winners Poles Seasons
Denny Hamlin 4 2019, 2015, 2013, 2012
Martin Truex Jr 3 2017, 2011, 2010
Chase Elliott 1 2019
Kyle Larson 1 2018
Kyle Busch 1 2017
Brad Keselowski 1 2014
Kevin Harvick 1 2014

Recently retired driver, Jimmie Johnson, holds the NASCAR Cup Series record for the most wins at Dover Motor Speedway with 11 victories (2002 sweep, 2005 Playoffs, 2009 sweep, 2010 Playoffs, Spring of 2012, 2013 Playoffs, Spring of 2014, Spring of 2015, and Spring of 2017). Three drivers are tied for the most wins among active competitors at Dover – Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Busch – each have three wins. Of the 39 different NASCAR Cup Series winners at Dover Motor Speedway, nine are active this weekend.

Active Dover Race Winners Wins Seasons
Kevin Harvick 3 2020, 2018, 2015
Martin Truex Jr 3 2019. 2016, 2007
Kyle Busch 3 2017, 2010, 2008
Alex Bowman 1 2021
Denny Hamlin 1 2020
Kyle Larson 1 2019
Chase Elliott 1 2018
Brad Keselowski 1 2012
Kurt Busch 1 2011

This weekend’s DuraMAX Drydene 400 will be 400 laps (400 miles) and will be broken up into three stages. The first stage will be 120 laps, the second stage will be 130 laps and the final stage will be 150 laps.

All the on-track action begins for the NASCAR Cup Series on Saturday, April 30 with practice from 10:30 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. ET directly followed by Busch Light Pole Qualifying at 11:15 a.m. ET. Both practice and qualifying will be televised on FS1.

NASCAR Cup Series

Next Race: DuraMAX Drydene 400 presented by RelaDyne

The Place: Dover Motor Speedway

The Date: Sunday, May 1

The Time: 3 p.m. ET

The Purse: $7,205,230

TV: FS1, 2 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 400 miles (400 laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 120),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 250), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 400)

Three teams have dominated Dover over last 17 Cup races (2013-2021)

In the last 17 NASCAR Cup Series races at Dover Motor Speedway (2013-2021) only three teams have visited Victory Lane – Hendrick Motorsports (eight wins during that time), Joe Gibbs Racing (five wins) and Stewart-Haas Racing (four wins).

The most recent to win at Dover Motor Speedway was Hendrick Motorsports, when Alex Bowman drove to the win last season. It was the organization’s, NASCAR Cup Series leading, 21st victory at Dover among seven different drivers – Jimmie Johnson (11 wins), Jeff Gordon (five), Geoff Bodine (one), Ken Schrader (one), Ricky Rudd (one), Chase Elliott (one) and Alex Bowman (one). Eight of the 21 wins have come in the last 17 races (47%), nearly half of the events from 2013-2021.

Not far behind HMS in wins at Dover is Joe Gibbs Racing with a total of nine NASCAR Cup Series Dover victories; five of them coming in the last 17 events at one-mile facility (2013-2021). The most recent Joe Gibbs Racing driver to win at Dover was Denny Hamlin in 2020.

The third organization to jump in on the wins at Dover Motor Speedway from 2013-2021 was Stewart-Haas Racing with four victories among two drivers – Tony Stewart (2013) and Kevin Harvick (2015, 2018, 2020).

This season, five different organizations have won at least one race in the NASCAR Cup Series, led by Hendrick Motorsports with four victories; followed by Trackhouse Racing (two wins), Joe Gibbs Racing (two wins), Team Penske (one win) and Stewart-Haas Racing (one win).

Points leader Chase Elliott still winless 10 races into the 2022 season

Atop the NASCAR Cup Series standings this season following Talladega is Hendrick Motorsport’s driver Chase Elliott, holding a 21-point lead over second place Ryan Blaney as the series heads to Dover Motor Speedway for the DuraMAX Drydene 400 (3 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). Elliott returns to Monster Mile looking for his first win of the 2022 season, riding a winless streak that dates back to Road America on July 4, 2021 – 26 races ago.

Taming the concrete mile at Dover has come naturally for Elliott. In 11 series starts at the Monster Mile, he has collected one win (2018) and eight top-five finishes; including a third-place result last season.

Bell, Reddick teeter Playoff cutline heading to Dover

A scant one-point separates Joe Gibbs Racing driver Christopher Bell in the 16th and final NASCAR Cup Series Playoff position from Richard Childress Racing’s Tyler Reddick in 17th, the first spot outside the postseason cutoff as the series heads to Dover Motor Speedway for the DuraMAX Drydene 400 presented by RelaDyne on Sunday, May 1 at 3 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Both Bell and Reddick earned spots in last season’s NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs for the first time in their careers and intend to do the same this season as well.

Bell has made three Cup Series starts at the Monster Mile posting an average finish of 23.3. The young Oklahoman also has back-to-back wins at the 1.366-mile track in the NASCAR Xfinity Series (2018-2019) on his resume.

Reddick has made three Cup Series starts at Dover posting one top-10 finish. His average finish at the track is 13.0.

NASCAR Cup Series, Etc.

Reminiscing about Hendrick Motorsports’ 1-2-3-4 finish – Last season, Hendrick Motorsports flexed its competitive muscles becoming the third team all-time in the NASCAR Cup Series to finish a race with all four of its cars in the top-four positions; joining Peter DePaolo Racing (Dec. 30, 1956 at Titusville, April 7, 1957 at North Wilkesboro) and RFK Racing (Nov. 20, 2005 at Homestead-Miami). Alex Bowman led Kyle Larson, Chase Elliott and William Byron to a 1-2-3-4 finish for Hendrick Motorsports at Dover Motor Speedway last season.

NASCAR Cup Series Featured Matchups: 2022 DuraMAX Drydene 400 – Below is a close look at the featured matchups fans can bet on heading into this weekend’s event.

  • 1 – Ross Chastain vs. 5 – Kyle Larson
  • Chastain’s dream season continued this past Sunday at Talladega, as he collected his second win of the year after a tight battle for the win on the final lap against Kyle Larson and Erik Jones. Chastain has shown speed in nearly every race this season, but can he topple Larson for a second week in a row on one of Larson’s best tracks statistically? That’ll be the question leading into our headline matchup of the week.

  • 48 – Alex Bowman vs. 24 – William Byron
  • Before last year, most people thought that Alex Bowman was the clear fourth-best driver at Hendrick Motorsports. A lot of that narrative has changed over the past 24 months. Both drivers are as consistent as they come and are always in the mix late in races, no matter the track. While Byron has two wins to Bowman’s one this year, Bowman may have the edge at Dover. Bowman returns to defend his win, while Byron owns two top fives and looks to break through at the Monster Mile.

  • 4 – Kevin Harvick vs. 19 – Martin Truex, Jr.
  • Both of these drivers are looking for their first win this year. Harvick started the season slow but has come alive as of late. Truex, on the other hand, has been as close as anyone to a win this year but has found some troubles and bad luck late in races. These veterans hoist two of the best driver averages at Dover and will certainly be looking forward to this track in hopes to get a much needed win this season.

  • 9 – Chase Elliott vs. 8 – Tyler Reddick
  • Tyler Reddick has been a magnet for heartbreak over the past two weeks, as he got taken out while battling for the lead on the final lap two weeks ago in Bristol, and then followed that up with a part failure at Talladega that took him out of contention in the opening stage of the race. With how much speed Reddick has shown this season, it seems likely that he’ll regain his footing this weekend at Dover – but can he outgun Chase Elliott head-to-head? Elliott was stellar in this race last year, posting a third-place finish, and has a win in 2018 at the facility to his credit. This matchup will be a fascinating battle between a driver who has been consistently solid all year long (Elliott) versus an inconsistent driver who has at-times appeared to have dominant speed (Reddick).

Grammy-Nominated & CMA New Artist of the Year Jimmie Allen to perform pre-race concert – Delaware native and multi-platinum selling, award-winning country music superstar Jimmie Allen will perform a pre-race concert at the Monster Mile before the DuraMAX Drydene 400 presented by RelaDyne NASCAR Cup Series race on Sunday, May 1 at 12:45 p.m. on the Embrace Home Loans stage in Victory Plaza.

“We are so excited to have Jimmie come home to provide all of us such great entertainment. He is an outstanding individual as well as a performer and we’re so happy he is coming,” said Mike Tatoian, president and general manager of Dover Motor Speedway.

Allen, a Milton, Del., native, was most recently nominated for Best New Artist at the GRAMMY Awards in April and co-hosted the ACM Awards with Dolly Parton in March. Other 2022 nominations for Allen have included ACM Male Artist of the Year and Outstanding New Artist at the NAACP Image Awards. He is the reigning CMA New Artist of the Year and also won ACM New Male Artist of the Year in 2021. His third album “Tulip Drive” will be released June 24 and the record’s lead single “Down Home” is available everywhere now.

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