The NASCAR Cup Series drivers take on Nashville Superspeedway for the first time, capping off a race weekend near Music City. The 1.33-mile concrete oval will test the drivers, but the rules package will benefit one particular driver. NASCAR will use the 750-horsepower setup, which Martin Truex Jr. used to win three races in 2021.
According to NASCAR, the Joe Gibbs Racing driver won at three ovals incorporating the 750-hp, low downforce package — Phoenix, Martinsville, and Darlington. All three tracks will return for the playoffs, setting Truex up for more success. Nashville Superspeedway, a track where Truex has five starts in the Busch Series, will use the same setup, per Fox Sports’ Bob Pockrass.
The 2017 Cup Series champion did not reach Victory Lane at Nashville Superspeedway during his Busch Series career. However, he posted two top-five finishes during his time driving for Chance2 Motorsports. He finished second in 2004 behind Jason Leffler. Truex turned in another strong performance during the second 2005 race at Nashville, finishing fifth while Clint Bowyer captured the checkered flag.
Truex Will Have the Opportunity to Test Out the Track
With Nashville Superspeedway serving as a new track on the Cup Series circuit, there is precious little data about the concrete oval. The drivers will be able to make up for the lack of information by taking part in practice and qualifying sessions before the green flag waves on Sunday, June 20.
According to Pockrass, the Cup Series drivers will head to the track on Saturday, June 19, at 2:05 p.m. ET. They will take part in a 50-minute practice session before heading back to the garage. The Xfinity Series drivers will then take on the oval at 3:30 p.m. ET.
Truex and his peers will return to Nashville Superspeedway on the morning of June 20 for their qualifying sessions. They will take laps around the 1.33-mile oval, starting at 11:05 a.m. ET, to determine where they will line up for the Ally 400. They will not have to worry about the previous race on the schedule (Sonoma) and how they fared.
Another Former Cup Series Champion Will Contend for the Win
While the 750-hp setup will certainly benefit Truex, he won’t be the only driver with the opportunity to find success. Joey Logano, the driver of the No. 22 Team Penske Ford Mustang, has a similar run of success with this rules package.
Eight of Logano’s nine top-10 finishes during the 2021 season have taken place at tracks where the drivers used the 750-hp package. This list includes his seven top-five finishes, three of which were road course races. He finished second at the Daytona Road Course, third at Circuit of the Americas, and fourth at Sonoma Raceway.
The remainder of the 2021 schedule features three more road courses, which will force NASCAR to use the 750-hp setup again. Additionally, the trip to New Hampshire Motor Speedway will use the same rules package. Truex and Logano will be among the favorites to win these races, along with Hendrick Motorsports drivers Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson.