Category Archives: NASCAR Cup Series

Perfect 10

Photo Noah Watts/Myracenews

Aric Almirola battles darkness, Bell to win Foxwoods Resort Casino 301, clinch playoff berth.

LOUDON, N.H. – Aric Almirola raced Mother Nature, daylight and the NASCAR Cup Series (NCS) field to claim his first win since 2018 in a wild Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (NHMS) and a berth in the 2021 NCS Playoffs.

“That’s what a race car driver lives for,” the 37-year-old Tampa, Fla. native said after the race. “For so long, I’ve been so close to winning at places like here, like Dover. We have been fighting, scratching, clawing. It feels so good to have that pay off.”

Aric Almirola leads the NACASR Cup Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 field at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway July 18th 2021. Noah Watts/Myracenews

Following a red flag for rain that delayed the race for an hour and 41 minutes, Almirola powered his No. 10 machine from his 22nd place starting spot into the top five by the end of the second stage. In the final stage, Almirola battled past Brad Keselowski, Denny Hamlin and Kevin Harvick – who have combined for nine wins at “The Magic Mile” – to take the lead. After leading the final 20 laps, NASCAR officials called the race eight laps shy of its scheduled distance due to darkness.

Christopher Bell, who dominated Saturday’s Ambetter Get Vaccinated 200 NASCAR Xfinity Series race on the 1.058-mile track, nearly pulled off the weekend sweep, finishing second.

“I didn’t know how many laps they cut us short, but when I saw the board and how many laps we had left, it stings,” Bell said. “If I was able to get to him, I think I had something for him. We were really good right there at the end of the race.”

Keselowski, Joey Logano and Ryan Blaney rounded out the top five.

The race, NHMS’s 50th Cup Series showdown, was marked by six cautions – including the red flag for rain – for a total of 47 laps.

The Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 trophy marks the third win of Almirola’s NCS career and the first not on a superspeedway. With the win – the first for Stewart-Haas Racing this season – Almirola earned a spot in the NASCAR Playoffs.

“This is by far one of my favorite racetracks,” Almirola said. “I know what I want out of the race car here. I know what to ask for in adjustments. Everything kind of lined up perfectly, we had a fast race car and we were – finally – able to capitalize on that.”

Prior to the win, Almirola was 27th in points. Unofficially, Tyler Reddick now sits in the 16th and final Playoff spot, with Austin Dillon just five points behind.

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Keep track of all of New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s events by following on Facebook (@NHMotorSpeedway), Twitter (@NHMS) and Instagram (@NHMS). Keep up with all the latest information on the speedway website (NHMS.com) and mobile app.

Elliott Hopes to Add a Giant Lobster to His Trophy Collection

Photo Courtesy: NHMS/Harold Hinson Photography

Chase Elliott will be among the drivers competing in the Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 NASCAR Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway this Sunday.

LOUDON, N.H. – With a NASCAR Cup Series (NCS) championship in 2020, a NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) championship in 2014, a dozen NCS wins and three consecutive NMPA Most Popular Driver awards, Chase Elliott has enjoyed an amazing amount of success over a relatively short time in NASCAR. One item still notably missing from his impressive list of achievements? A NCS win – or win of any kind – at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (NHMS).

Elliott and his No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports team hope to change that when NASCAR’s premier division returns to “The Magic Mile” for the Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 on Sunday.

“New Hampshire has been a really hit-or-miss place for us,” said Elliott, who has just two top-10 finishes, including only one top-five, in seven Cup starts at NHMS. “It’s just a different track. It takes a differing driving style, I feel like, than some of the other places. I look at Loudon as being more of its own animal.”

Elliott recorded his best finish at NHMS – fifth – in July 2018. His other top-10 finish at the 1.058-mile oval was a ninth-place result in 2020, when the NCS last competed at “The Magic Mile.” So, if nothing else, the reigning Cup Series champ can hang his hat on the fact that he’s finished in the top 10 in two of his last three starts at NHMS and seems to be steadily improving and gaining confidence at this always-challenging track.

“We’ve had a couple solid runs here, but never a dominating performance,” Elliott said. “I don’t feel like personally it has been my best place.”

While Elliott’s record at NHMS supports his honest assessment, the second-generation driver and son of 1988 Cup champion Bill Elliott will almost certainly arrive here this year knowing it’s likely the best chance he’s ever had to break into victory lane and leave with his first giant lobster. This is because, in addition to Elliott enjoying a strong season in his No. 9 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports as a whole has been hands-down the team to beat in 2021.

As of just past the season’s midway point, the organization owned and founded by NASCAR Hall of Famer Rick Hendrick had prevailed in nine of 19 points races, with all four Hendrick drivers winning at least once. This could spell trouble for the competition at NHMS, despite the fact that a Hendrick driver hasn’t won at Loudon since 2012.

“Each individual Hendrick team is putting in a lot of effort to go and be the best we can, and that’s really what it comes down to,” Elliott said. “I don’t think any of the drivers are trying any harder than we have in the past. I think it’s just a really nice effort from the top to the bottom of trying to take four fast race cars to the track every weekend.”

“I do feel like everybody is – I don’t want to say sharing information, because we’ve always done that – but just working together a little more from all aspects. I feel like, right now, it’s super fluid and everybody’s open about anything and everything, and I feel like it’s showing on the track.

Will it show in the Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 at NHMS? Stay tuned.

Race weekend action gets underway on Doubleheader Saturday, July 17 with practice and qualifying sessions scheduled for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour (NWMT). The green flag drops for the Whelen 100 NWMT race at 12:45 p.m. followed by the Ambetter Get Vaccinated 200 NXS race at 3 p.m. The NCS Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 will run at 3 p.m. Sunday, July 18, marking the 50th NCS race at “The Magic Mile.”

For a NASCAR race weekend schedule, visit NHMS.com/Events/Foxwoods-Resort-Casino-301/Schedule/

*Schedule subject to change.

Tickets:

Log on to NHMS.com for tickets, schedules and more information on the weekend’s lineup of action-packed racing. Doubleheader Saturday tickets start at just $35 while kids 12 and under are free. Sunday’s Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 tickets start at just $59 for adults and $10 for kids 12 and under.

Follow Us:

Keep track of all of New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s events by following on Facebook (@NHMotorSpeedway), Twitter (@NHMS) and Instagram (@NHMS). Keep up with all the latest information on the speedway website (NHMS.com) and mobile app.

Five Can’t-Miss Things to See and Do When Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 Returns to New Hampshire Motor Speedway This Weekend

From checking out the all-new Rock Point overlook to turning laps on the famed “Magic Mile” or getting an autograph from NASCAR’s best drivers, there’s plenty of fun in store for fans this weekend as NASCAR returns to New England.

LOUDON, N.H. – Halfway through the 2021 NASCAR season, there’s no shortage of intriguing storylines to watch heading into this weekend’s Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (NHMS), but the fun isn’t limited to the on-track action. From taking in the white-knuckled racing from an all-new viewing area to turning laps on the 1.058-mile track before NASCAR’s best battle for the checkered flag, there’s so much in store for fans returning to “The Magic Mile” to make their weekend an experience to remember.

Here are a few of the must-dos to help fans maximize their weekend experience:

Get to the Point: NHMS’s newest amenity in the wicked awesome Rock Point. Located outside of turn four and featuring a public bar, lawn games, shaded areas and an up-close view of the race cars as they speed toward the finish line, Rock Point is a general admission, open-air viewing option available to all fans with a race ticket. With temperatures expected in the mid-70s on Sunday, Rock Point will be the place to be as the laps wind down and the excitement ramps up.

Setting the Bar: Fans looking to upgrade their race-day experience need look no further than the Track Bar. Situated high atop the Main Grandstand on the suite level right above the start/finish line, the Track Bar provides the best sight lines of the speedway in the comfort of a climate-controlled luxury suite with a full cash bar, private restrooms and closed-circuit televisions. Packages include admission to the luxury suite, catered lunch and non-alcoholic beverages. Sunday, fans with Track Bar access will also be treated to a Q&A with Roush Fenway Racing’s Ryan Newman.

Cruisin’ for a Cause: Fans in search of the ultimate thrill have the opportunity to experience “The Magic Mile” from the driver’s perspective as part of Speedway Children’s Charities’ (SCC) Laps for Charity event. For just a $40 donation to the New Hampshire Chapter of SCC, fans can drive three laps in their personal vehicle or ride in the NHMS pace car on Thursday, before NASCAR’s best try to tame the track at Sunday’s Foxwoods Resort Casino 301. To learn more about Laps for Charity, or to see more ways fans can support SCC, click here.

Asked and Answered: For the first time since the outset of the pandemic, fans will once again have access to some of their favorite drivers during a bevy of question-and-answer sessions through race weekend. Hometown favorites Anthony Alfredo and Ryan Preece are scheduled to join former NASCAR Cup Series (NCS) champion Kevin Harvick and fan-favorite Corey LaJoie for free Q&As on Sunday ahead of the Foxwoods Resort Casino 301. NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) driver Daniel Hemric will take the stage before Saturday’s Ambetter Get Vaccinated 200. For a complete schedule of driver appearances, including details on an autograph session with 2018 NCS champion Joey Logano, click here.

Sneak Peek of What’s in Store: Whether you’re traveling to the Granite State from one of 45 other states represented among ticket holders to take in the fun in-person or staying home to catch the pivotal showdown on NBCSN, fans can preview all of the action and get the latest news and information from “The Magic Mile” with this year’s online Race Week Preview Guide. Read up on some of the biggest moments form the first 49 NCS races at NHMS, study the on-track storylines that could play out Sunday or learn more about the Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 pace car driver Gunner Olszewski. Everything fans need to know is right at their fingertips.

The excitement gets underway on Doubleheader Saturday, July 17 with practice and qualifying sessions scheduled for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour (NWMT). The green flag drops for the Whelen 100 NWMT race at 12:45 p.m. followed by the Ambetter Get Vaccinated 200 NXS race at 3 p.m. The NCS Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 will run at 3 p.m. Sunday, July 18.

For a NASCAR race weekend schedule, visit NHMS.com/Events/Foxwoods-Resort-Casino-301/Schedule/

*Schedule subject to change.

Tickets:

Log on to NHMS.com for tickets, schedules and more information on the weekend’s lineup of action-packed racing. Doubleheader Saturday tickets start at just $35 while kids 12 and under are free. Sunday’s Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 tickets start at just $59 for adults and $10 for kids 12 and under.

Follow Us:

Keep track of all of New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s events by following on Facebook (@NHMotorSpeedway), Twitter (@NHMS) and Instagram (@NHMS). Keep up with all the latest information on the speedway website (NHMS.com) and mobile app.