NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: Tums Fast Relief 500 Preview

Denny Hamlin sprays champagne in Victory Lane as he adds another grandfather clock trophy to his collection. Photo by AP Photo

 

Laps: 500
Miles: 263
Track: 0.526 mile Asphalt/Concrete track
Qualifying: Cancelled due to weather
2010 winner:  Denny Hamlin
2010 polesitter:  Denny Hamlin

With the wild-care race of Talladega Superspeedway in our rear-view mirror, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series heads to the paper-clip track of Martinsville Speedway-the shortest track on the NASCAR circuit-for the Tums Fast Relief 500 on Sunday afternoon.  Tums is a fitting sponsor for the 500 lap race considering the possible use for antacids during a given race, particularly a short track.

As the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series winds down, a great championship fight is brewing, to include the first champion not named Jimmie Johnson since 2005. 43 drivers tack to the oval for respect and/or revenge. The tight corners of Martinsville make it the perfect venue to drivers to dish out some overdue payback.  Revenge alone makes Martinsville tickets one of the most popular in the Sprint Cup schedule.

Top Contendors

A few drivers know how to master the paper-clip. The driver drivers on the speedway are Jimmie Johnson and Denny Hamlin. Johnson has six wins on the track, along with 17 top-10 finishes. He is currently seventh in points. Hamlin, who is currently 11th in points, has four wins and 10 top-10 finishes.

Jeff Gordon is another driver you can’t count out at Martinsville. He has seven wins at the track, and a whopping 30 top-10 finishes. After a disappointing finish at Talladega last weekend, Gordon is now 10th in standings, 82 points behind the leader, Carl Edwards.

Underdogs

Other drivers to keep an eye on this weekend are Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, and Brad Keselowski.

Harvick has one win at this track and is currently fifth in points. Busch has never won at this track, but does have eight short track wins in his career and finished in third earlier this season. He is currently sixth in points, 40 behind the leader.

It seems as though Keselowski finishes well, regardless of what type of track he’s on. Keselowski has never won at Martinsville but that doesn’t mean anything. Currently he is third in points, just 18 points out of first.

Tune into the Tums Fast Relief 500 on Sunday at 1:30 pm EST on ESPN. Current NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points leader, Carl Edwards will be the ESPN In-Race reporter. Who do you think will win the coveted grandfather clock trophy?

 

Topics: Brad Keselowski, Denny Hamlin, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, Martinsville Speedway, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series

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