Endurance, stamina, and focus will be tested on Sunday Night in the longest and most grueling race of the year, the Coca Cola 600. An extra hundred miles of racing can change the course of an event and in years past, it hasn’t always mattered what you did in the first 500 miles, but what you did in the final one-hundred. This race is NASCAR’s answer to a marathon and the two events share a lot of similar aspects. A go for broke attitude won’t win you this race, what will is how you endure all 600 miles which will span from daylight to darkness in the longest night in motorsports.
The Coca Cola 600 will be taking place on Sunday, May 26, 2013 and the green flag is scheduled to wave at 6:16 PM EST. To conquer all 600 miles, you’ll need to finish all 400 laps which sometimes can be a major test of a driver’s stamina. The weather forecast couldn’t be better for Sunday Night with mostly clear skies and a 0% chance of rain. You can catch the race on TV on FOX or listen to it on the radio on PRN.
A rather calm 600 miles of racing took place last year at the Charlotte Motor Speedway. The drivers all attempted to make it to the finish and most of them did, but only Kasey Kahne was given the trophy. Kahne has been the king of this race in the past and last year’s win was his third in the event. He knows how to get it done and many drivers are hoping they learn his ways so they can be crowned king of this race of all races.
It has been two weeks since all the Cup cars were on the track in a point’s event so some of the same storylines after Darlington will apply to this race. One major headline after Darlington was Matt Kenseth who picked up his third victory of the season. Kenseth and the rest of JGR are off to a hot start this season and their five wins as an organization show for it. Kasey Kahne had a little incident with another JGR driver during the race. He and Kyle Busch were racing for the lead when Kahne got loose above Busch and spun out. The incident likely cost Kahne a shot at the win that night and Busch eventually lost the lead to Kenseth.
Jimmie Johnson is still running strong at the top of the standings with two wins this season. He also claimed the million dollar prize last weekend in the All-Star Race so he knows the key to victory in a night race at Charlotte. Carl Edwards, Matt Kenseth, and Dale Earnhardt Jr. are the ones chasing Johnson for the spot on top of the standings. One slip up by Johnson in a race as long as this one could allow any of the drivers following him to catch-up to him very quickly.
Sunday’s race will surely be a test of man and machine and whichever man can make his machine last the longest will end up in victory lane. Johnson, Kahne, and Kenseth will be the drivers to watch out for in the race. Seeing one of them in victory lane will not surprise anyone and it will only build on their phenomenal reputations this season. If you can make it to the final hundred miles in this race, you’ll have a shot at victory. It’s anyone’s game on Sunday Night and only one driver will reign supreme in the longest race of the season.
Next Race– FedEx 400 Benefiting Autism Speaks at the Dover International Speedway in Dover, Delaware
By Jason Schultz