NASCAR Playoffs at Talladega preview: Standings, TV schedule, live stream, previous results
Dale Earnhardt Jr. will be making his final ride at Talladega Superspeedway this weekend
The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads back to Talladega Superspeedway for the second race in the playoffs Round of 12., and any playoff contender that wins the Alabama 500 would guarantee their spot as well.
While Truex doesn't necessarily face as much pressure to win the race, he can still add to his impressive 64 playoff points and accomplish history in the process. The No. 78 driver is just 23 laps-led away from 2,000. Since the year 2000, only(2,294 laps led in 2015 and 2,137 laps led in 2014), Jimmie Johnson (2,238 laps led in 2009) and (2,320 laps led in 2001) have accomplished the feat.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. is one driver toward the bottom of the standings that can make waves on the track this weekend., one at Daytona and one at Talladega. The Alabama fast track has been swept seven times by six drivers. The only active driver to accomplish the feat is Dale Earnhardt Jr., who did it twice winning four races in a row from 2001 to 2003.
will be competing in his final race at Talladega. It has been by far one of his most successful tracks as the restrictor-plate ace has earned six wins, 12 top fives, 16 top 10s and an average finish of 15.6 in 34 career starts. As for superspeedway wins, Dale's 10 (four at Daytona) puts him sixth all-time. His father, the late Dale Earnhardt Sr., has the most with 13.
Another driver that could shake things up this weekend is Jamie McMurray. After beginning the Round of 12 in the bottom position, he quickly moved up to eighth with a top-five showing at Charlotte. McMurray will try and keep it up this weekend.
"I think there is momentum for sure when people are feeling good and when teams hit on stuff that makes the cars quicker," said McMurray, a two-time winner at Talladega. "It certainly helps every week."
"I've been fortunate that I've had a lot of people willing to work with me on the track. You know you make decisions in split seconds and I've been fortunate that I've made some good decisions. I've also made poor decisions. I don't know, with the plate racing I feel like there's certain people that tend to run well at most of those and I'm fortunate that I'm in that category."
Brad Keselowski presents a unique case this weekend. Not many people expected the No. 2 driver to be below the cutline in 10th place after beginning the Round of 12 in fourth. Given the unpredictability of Talladega, no driver wants to enter below the cutoff but if anyone has a record of consistency there it's Keselowski.
In 17 career starts at the superspeedway Keselowski owns four wins, six top fives, 10 top 10s and an average finish of 14.9. He also has made plenty of memories there. Keselowski's first win at the track came in 2009, while in 2014 he won the race to advance the Round of 8.
Here's everything else you need to know:
How to watch the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Alabama 500
Location: Talladega Superspeedway
Date: Sunday, October 15
Time: 2 p.m. ET
Length: 188 laps/500.08 miles
Stage 1: Ends on lap 55
Stage 2: Ends on lap 110
Final stage: Scheduled for lap 188
Live stream: NBC Sports App
Round of 12 drivers that have won at Talladega:
- Brad Keselowski (4 wins)
- Jimmie Johnson (2 wins)
- Jamie McMurray (2 wins)
- Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (1 win)
- Denny Hamlin (1 win)
- Kevin Harvick (1 win)
- Kyle Busch (1 win)
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs Round of 12 standings
Martin Truex Jr.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
The NASCAR XFINITY Series is off this week after their own Round of 12 wrapped up last weekend at Charlotte. Points have been reset ahead of next week's Round of 8 opener at Kansas Speedway asnow leads Justin Allgaier, Elliott Sadler and Daniel Hemric as drivers above the cutline.
Cole Custer, Brennan Poole, Ryan Reed and Matt Tifft start the next round below the cutoff. Regardless of positioning it is still a close race for the Championship 4 as all drivers are within 22 points of Byron.
2017 NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoffs Round of 8 standings
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will be coming off a bye week to close out their Round of 8 at Talladega Superspeedway ahead of Sunday's Cup action. Unlike the other series, the truck field will narrow to six drivers after the checkered flag flies Saturday afternoon.
Christopher Bell, who drew praise from Cup vet Jamie McMurray this week, leads the way with a sizable 47-point lead over second place Ben Rhodes. Matt Crafton, Johnny Sauter, Chase Briscoe and Austin Cindric are among other drivers above the cutline, while Kaz Grala and John Hunter Nemechek will need solid efforts to make their way into the next round.
Sauter, a previous Talladega winner in 2013, will be one driver to keep an eye on. He also finished seventh in back-to-back seasons (2015 and 2016).
How to watch the Camping World Truck Series fred's 250 Powered by Coca-Cola
Location: Talladega Superspeedway
Date: Saturday, October 14
Time: 1 p.m. ET
Length: 94 laps/250.04 miles
Stage 1: Ends on lap 20
Stage 2: Ends on lap 49
Final stage: Scheduled for lap 94
Live stream: FOX Sports GO
2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Round of 8 standings
John Hunter Nemechek
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