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After unique — and crazy — pack racing at Daytona International Speedway, the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) returns to a more familiar setup with Kentucky Speedway’s 1.5-mile layout.
The Monster Energy Series has already visited six 1.5-mile racetracks, the last three of which were run at night. Kansas Speedway was scheduled as a traditional night race, while the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway started around 6 p.m. ET but finished under the lights. The race ran at Chicagoland Speedway two weeks ago was scheduled to be a day race, but rain pushed the green flag back to approximately 6:30 p.m. ET.
This is important because the cars drive differently in the heat of the day compared to the cooler night temperatures.
And with Saturday’s race at Kentucky also scheduled for an evening start, we can lean on those past three night races to make our NASCAR Props Challenge picks for the Quaker State 400.
1. Only three active drivers have won a Cup race at Kentucky. Will we see a first-time Kentucky winner this weekend? Yes or No?
Based on betting odds, this is surprisingly close, but when there is not a clear edge, I’ll always lean toward the field against just three drivers.
2. O/U 18.5 lead changes?
In eight races at Kentucky, 2011 was the only event that finished with more than 17 lead changes.
3. Which former Kentucky winner will finish higher? Kyle Busch or Martin Truex Jr.?
While Truex and Busch have put up similar numbers — in terms of average running position and fast laps — at Kansas, Charlotte and Chicago this season, I’ll go with Truex as the two-time defending race winner.