New Hampshire lived up to its nickname as the Magic Mile as the end result was magical for Matt Kenseth. Congratulations to Matt Kenseth on his win at New Hampshire. That was Kenseth’s series-high seventh win of the year!
Fun Fact: The race at New Hampshire was Kenseth’s 500th career start in the Cup Series and he joins Richard Petty as the only drivers to win a race in their 500th start. Until Sunday, no organization had finished 1-2 in the first two races of the Chase until Joe Gibbs Racing’s Kenseth and Kyle Busch pulled off that feat on Sunday.
Now the drivers and crews head towards the First State and Dover International Speedway, otherwise known as “the Monster Mile.”
Dover is a one-mile track that is described as a “self-cleaning” track because the banking is so high, when cars wreck there, they have a tendency to slide back down to the bottom of the banking. That’s why it’s very easy to get caught up in someone else’s mess at Dover. A driver could be running eight-twelve spots behind someone when they initially wreck and still get caught up in it because by the time they get there, the wrecked driver has returned to the bottom of the track. Hence the nickname of the track, “the Monster Mile” as this track has a habit of chewing up cars and spitting them back out.
Dover is one of two tracks on the NASCAR circuit to have its racing surface made up entirely of concrete. It opened in 1969 as a one-mile asphalt oval. It remained in its asphalt state until 1995. From 1969 to 1970, the races were 300 miles and then became 500-mile races in 1971 until 1997 when the distance was curtailed to its current distance of 400 miles.
Defending race winner: Last year, Brad Keselowski parlayed fuel mileage into his second straight win of the Chase and showed that he would be a force to be reckoned with for the remainder of the Chase.
Most wins among active drivers: Jimmie Johnson (7)
Prediction: It’s easy to go with either Johnson, who has the most wins among all active drivers, or Kenseth, as this is Kenseth’s self-proclaimed favorite track. While I do believe that both drivers will be in the hunt for a win on Sunday, I’m going with Greg Biffle. Biffle has two wins at Dover and if he’s going to make a run for the title, he has to perform well at one of his better tracks. He’s coming off a top-five finish at a track that he hasn’t done well at in the past so that has to give him some confidence heading into Dover.