Preview: The FireKeepers Casino 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Race at Michigan

It's all about speed at Michigan International Speedway, but will the pole-sitter Kurt Busch win the FireKeepers Casino 400?

Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images

Restrictor plates are not welcome at Michigan International Speedway. As the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series prepares to race at the series' fastest track, drivers will turn some of the quickest laps of the season at the two-mile D-shaped oval. The long straightaways and wide sweeping corners allow for blazing speeds. The high banking of the track enables drivers to maintain quickness into the corners. Thanks to a resurface in 2012, with a smoother pavement than most tracks on the NASCAR circuit, the FireKeepers Casino 400 is set to be an entertaining race.


The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Schedule for the FireKeepers Casino 400:


FireKeepers Casino 400 (Follow live)
The Place: Michigan International Speedway
The Date: Sunday, June 10, 2018
The Time: Approximately 2 p.m. EST
TV: FOX, 1:30 p.m. EST
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Hashtag: #FireKeepers400
Distance: 400 miles (200 laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 60), Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 120), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 200)


Press Pass (Watch live)
Post-Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race: 5:00 p.m. EST

Listen: A Three Man Show


Starting Lineup

(Position, Driver, Manufacturer, Speed)


1. Kurt Busch, Ford, 203.361
2. Brad Keselowski, Ford, 203.166
3. Kyle Busch, Toyota, 203.120
4. Kevin Harvick, Ford, 202.954
5. Joey Logano, Ford, 202.168
6. Aric Almirola, Ford, 201.607
7. Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., Ford, 201.263
8. Erik Jones, Toyota, 201.140
9. Ryan Blaney, Ford, 200.792
10. Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 200.401
11. Ryan Newman, Chevrolet, 200.061
12. Clint Bowyer, Ford, 199.784
13. Chase Elliott, Chevrolet, 200.535
14. William Byron, Chevrolet, 200.490
15. Paul Menard, Ford, 200.328
16. Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 200.323
17. Martin Truex, Jr., Toyota, 200.228
18. Chris Buescher, Chevrolet, 200.083
19. Matt Kenseth, Ford, 199.806
20. Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 199.784
21. Alex Bowman, Chevrolet, 199.700
22. Daniel Suarez, Toyota, 199.645
23. Michael McDowell, Ford, 199.358
24. Jamie McMurray, Chevrolet, 199.302
25. A.J. Allmendinger, Chevrolet, 199.049
26. Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, 198.999
27. David Ragan, Ford, 198.741
28. Bubba Wallace, Chevrolet, 198.555
29. Kasey Kahne, Chevrolet, 197.954
30. Matt DiBenedetto, Ford, 197.704
31. Ty Dillon, Chevrolet, 196.915
32. Corey LaJoie, Chevrolet, 194.437
33. Ross Chastain, Chevrolet, 194.170
34. Gray Gaulding, Toyota, 192.647
35. B.J. McLeod, Ford, 192.082
36. Landon Cassill, Chevrolet, 191.449
37. D.J. Kennington, Chevrolet, 187.896
38. Timmy Hill, Toyota, 186.446
39. Garrett Smithley, Chevrolet, 186.442


Past 10 Winners at Michigan International Speedway

(Year, Driver, Manufacturer)


2008, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Chevrolet
2009, Mark Martin, Chevrolet
2010, Denny Hamlin, Toyota
2011, Denny Hamlin, Toyota
2012, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Chevrolet
2013, Greg Biffle, Ford
2014, Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet
2015, Kurt Busch, Chevrolet
2016, Joey Logano, Ford
2017, Kyle Larson, Chevrolet


The Monster Energy Cup Series started racing at Michigan International Speedway in 1969. NASCAR’s premier series races at the Speedway twice a year. The past 10 winners above represent the first race of the year at Michigan.



Broken Records?


Jeff Gordon reached a speed of 206.558 mph during qualifying at Michigan in 2014. Records are meant to be broken, but his record appears safe for now. Stewart-Haas Racing driver Kurt Busch was the fastest in qualifying with a speed of 203.361. However, he was over 3 mph slower than Gordon’s record. Gordon set a record, captured the pole, and won the Pure Michigan 400 in August 2014. Can Busch do the same and win the FireKeepers Casino 400?


Fast Three Times


Harvick’s No. 4 Busch Beer Ford Fusion is ‘Freaky Fast’ every week. Martin Truex Jr. is no stranger to speed either. As of late, Joe Gibbs Racing driver Kyle Busch is in a record-breaking mood and Kyle Larson is on the verge of setting his own records.

Larson has three consecutive runner-up finishes this season and three consecutive race wins at Michigan. His first career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series win was in 2016 when he took the checkered flag for the Michigan Pure 400. State native Brad Keselowski has a pair of Xfinity wins in his hometown but has yet to win a Cup Series race on his local track. If you were wondering, Kurt Busch has three wins at Michigan International Speedway—he won in 2003, 2007, and 2015. The only other driver with three wins at Michigan is Matt Kenseth.