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PREVIEW: Formula One at Imola, IMSA at Laguna Seca and NASCAR at Martinsville

Friday, October 30

1. NASCAR Truck Series (NGROTS) NASCAR Hall of Fame 200, Martinsville Speedway
• TV: Fox Sports Racing at 8:00P-10:00
• The Martinsville Speedway is a 0.526 mi (0.847 km) paved (asphalt with concrete in the corners) oval. The turns are banked at 12° with no banking at all in the short straights.
• Race distance is 200 laps - 105.2 mi; Stages: 50/50/100 laps
• “A limited, reduced number of fans will be in attendance.”
• No practice or qualifying sessions.
• Two Truck Series races were held here last year. The March race was won by Cup driver Kyle Busch over Ben Rhodes and Brett Moffitt. This was a playoff race in October; Todd Gilliland was the race winner with Ross Chastain second and Johnny Sauter third.
• In 2020, this October date is the only time the Truck Series has raced here. The most recent Truck Series race was held last Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway. Sheldon Creed won the race while Austin Hill was second and Zane Smith was third.
• The Martinsville race is the final elimination playoff race in the Truck Series before the championship finale at Phoenix. Sheldon Creed and Brett Moffitt are already locked in for the finale. There are two more drivers to be added to the final championship four at Phoenix. Austin Hill and Zane Smith are the two most likely to advance given that they have the most points but a race win by any of the bottom four or a high-scoring results by Matt Crafton, who is currently 12 points below the cut line might elevate one of the bottom four drivers into the finale.
• Click HERE for the entry list for this Truck Series race
• Click HERE for the starting lineup for this race

Saturday, October 31

2. NASCAR Xfinity Series Draft Top 250, Martinsville Speedway
• TV: NBC/TSN3 at 3:00P-6:00 8:00P-10:00
• The Martinsville Speedway is a 0.526 mi (0.847 km) paved (asphalt with concrete in the corners) oval. The turns are banked at 12° with no banking at all in the short straights.
• Race distance is 250 laps = 131.5 mi; Stages: 60/60/130 laps
• “A limited, reduced number of fans will be in attendance”
• No practice or qualifying sessions.
• There has not been an Xfinity race here since 2006. The series did run here once a year from 1982 to 1994. One more race was held there in 2006; it was won by Kevin Harvick over Clint Bowyer and Denny Hamlin.
• The most recent Xfinity Series race was held at Texas Motor Speedway last Saturday. Harrison Burton passed Noah Gragson late in the race to take the win. Anthony Alfredo finished third.
• This Martinsville race is the final playoff elimination race before the Phoenix finale a week later. Going into Martinsville, one driver, Chase Briscoe has qualified to advance to the Phoenix championship finale by winning at Kansas two weeks ago. This leaves three places available to the other playoff drivers going into the final championship four at Phoenix. Most likely to advance are the trio of Austin Cindric, Justin Allgaier, and Justin Haley, all of who are currently above the cut line. Brandon Jones, who is four points below the cut line might well earn enough points to displace Haley from advancing to the final four. Of course, if any of the seven drivers who are still contending for the final championship four were to win at Martinsville, that driver would, by virtue of that win, automatically transfer to the final championship four at Phoenix.
• Click HERE for the entry list for this Xfinity Series race
• Click HERE for the starting lineup for this race

Sunday, November 1

3. Formula 1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, Imola, Italy
• TV: TSN1/4/5 at 7:05A-9:00
• This Imola-based track (officially the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari) is a 5.040 km (3.132 mi) long artificial road course with 22 turns.
• Race distance is 63 laps (309.276 km)
• Although there had been plans to admit a limited number of spectators, this has been revoked and no spectators will be allowed admission.
• This is a two-day event with both practice (one session) and qualifying on Saturday.
• This is the first time an F1 race has been held at this track since 2006 when the race was won by Michael Schumacher.
• The most recent F1 race was the Portuguese Grand Prix last Sunday. Lewis Hamilton won there, his 92nd F1 win, a new record. His teammate Valtteri Bottas was a distant second ahead of Max Verstappen in third place.
• Click HERE for the entry list for this Imola F1 race
• Click HERE for the circuit map.

4. NASCAR Cup Series Xfinity 500, Martinsville Speedway
• TV: NBC/TSN1/4 at 2:00P-6:00 8:00P-10:00
• The Martinsville Speedway is a 0.526 mi (0.847 km) paved (asphalt with concrete in the corners) oval. The turns are banked at 12° with no banking at all in the short straights.
• Race distance is 500 laps = 263 mi; Stages: 130/130/240 laps
• “A limited, reduced number of fans will be in attendance”
• No practice or qualifying sessions.
• Two NASCAR Cup races were held here last year. In March, Brad Keselowski was the race winner while Chase Elliott was second and Kyle Busch was third. In October, Martin Truex won over William Byron and Keselowski.
• A Cup race was held here in June this year. It was won by Martin Truex with Ryan Blaney second and Keselowski third.
• The most recent NASCAR Cup race was held at Texas Motor Speedway and it was supposed to have been completed on Sunday, October 25th but, due to wet conditions, it was not completed until the following Wednesday, making for tight logistics for the teams to return to base and get ready of the Martinsville race this Sunday. Kyle Busch was the race winner, his first Cup race win of the 2020 season. Martin Truex was second and Christopher Bell was third in that four-day race.
• This race is the final race in the current ‘Round of 8' elimination series. So far, only Joey Logano has, by winning at Kansas, transferred to the final championship four. The other three drivers who are above the cut line – and, hence, the most likely to advance to the final are Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin and Brad Keselowski.
• Click HERE for the entry list for this NASCAR Cup Series race
• Click HERE for the starting lineup for this race

 

5. IMSA WeatherTech Hyundai Monterey Sports Car Championship, Laguna Seca, CA
• TV: Discovery Velocity at 4:00P-6:30
• The WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca is an artificial road course originally built on land that was part of the US Army’s Fort Ord. In its current configuration it is 2.238 mi (3.602 km) and it has 11 turns, including the famous ‘Corkscrew” diving S-turn.
• Race duration is 2 hours 40 minutes
• No spectators will be allowed to attend.
• There will be practice and qualifying sessions for all the scheduled races this weekend.
• Last year, the IMSA race at Laguna Seca was run in September where it was won by the team of Dane Cameron/Juan Pablo Montoya in an Acura DPi prototype.
• The most recent IMSA WeatherTech race this year was the 10-hour Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta on October 17th. The overall winner was the team of Ryan Briscoe/Scott Dixon and Renger van der Zande in the Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi prototype. The No. 911 Porsche of Campbell/Makowiecki/Tandy won the GTLM class. Tandy was also one of the winning drivers, winning overall in a similar car, in the Spa 24-Hours race last weekend.

• Click HERE for the entry list for this IMSA WeatherTech race
• Click HERE for the entry list for the supporting IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge race

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