NASCAR Cup Series Preview: Gander Outdoors 400 at Dover

Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvick will start on the front row at Dover International Speedway after rain washed out qualifying.

byT. Walker| UPDATED Oct 6, 2018 10:06 AM
NASCAR Cup Series Preview: Gander Outdoors 400 at Dover
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NASCAR Nation is still talking about the inaugural Bank of America Roval 400 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, but for the playoff drivers who advanced to the Round of 12, it’s time to focus on Dover. Austin Dillon, Erik Jones, Denny Hamlin, and Jimmie Johnson were eliminated from the playoffs after a wild race at the Charlotte road course. For the drivers that moved on, conquering the “Monster Mile” will prove challenging. With the unpredictable Talladega race imminently looming, winning at Dover or Kansas is the best way to secure a spot in the next round of the playoffs.

Jimmie Johnson has dominated at Dover International Speedway with a record 11 wins. He didn’t make the playoff cut after coming up short in a three-way tiebreaker to advance to the next round. “My desire to win has never been stronger,” said Johnson. He added, “We’re at my favorite race track and absolutely do I want to win the race. I will do everything in my power to win the race, but it takes a collective group to have the car, the pit stops, the strategy, and I don’t know if this weekend is that weekend. But if there is a track I can make up a tenth (of a second) or two for the team, this would be one of them.” Will the Hendrick Motorsports driver be able to bounce back and salvage his season with at least a win?

The starting lineup for the Gander Outdoors 400 at Dover International Speedway was set by owner’s points after an unexpected rain shower forced NASCAR to cancel qualifying. Kyle Busch, who leads all drivers in playoff points, will lead the field to green at the one-mile oval.

Kyle Busch, driver of the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Toyota, stands in the garage area during practice for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Gander Outdoors 400 at Dover International Speedway on Oct. 5, 2018. , Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Schedule:

Saturday, Oct. 6

11 a.m. - 11:50 a.m.: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series second practice, CNBC/NBC Sports App (Canada: TSN App) (Follow live)

1:30 p.m. - 2:20 p.m.: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series final practice, NBCSN/NBC Sports App (Canada: TSN App) (Follow live)

Sunday, Oct. 7

Gander Outdoors 400: (Follow live)

The Place: Dover International Speedway

The Time: Approximately 2 p.m. EST

TV: NBCSN/NBC Sports App, 1 p.m. EST

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 400 miles (400 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 120), Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 240), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 400)

Press Pass (Watch live)

5:15 p.m.: Post-Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race

Starting Lineup

(Position, Driver, Manufacturer, Speed)

1. Kyle Busch, Toyota

2. Kevin Harvick, Ford

3. Martin Truex, Jr., Toyota

4. Brad Keselowski, Ford

5. Clint Bowyer, Ford

6. Joey Logano, Ford

7. Kurt Busch, Ford

8. Ryan Blaney, Ford

9. Chase Elliott, Chevrolet

10. Kyle Larson, Chevrolet

11. Aric Almirola, Ford

12. Alex Bowman, Chevrolet

13. Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet

14. Austin Dillon, Chevrolet

15. Denny Hamlin, Toyota

16. Erik Jones, Toyota

17. Ryan Newman, Chevrolet

18. Paul Menard, Ford

19. Daniel Suarez, Toyota

20. Jamie McMurray, Chevrolet

21. Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., Ford

22. William Byron, Chevrolet

23. Chris Buescher, Chevrolet

24. A.J. Allmendinger, Chevrolet

25. Regan Smith, Chevrolet

26. David Ragan, Ford

27. Michael McDowell, Ford

28. Matt Kenseth, Ford

29. Bubba Wallace, Chevrolet

30. Ty Dillon, Chevrolet

31. Matt DiBenedetto, Ford

32. Ross Chastain, Chevrolet

33. Corey LaJoie, Chevrolet

34. Landon Cassill, Chevrolet

35. J.J. Yeley, Toyota

36. B.J. McLeod, Ford

37. Jeffrey Earnhardt, Toyota

38. Timmy Hill, Toyota

39. Harrison Rhodes, Chevrolet

Past 10 Winners at Dover International Speedway

(Year, Driver, Manufacturer)

2008, Greg Biffle, Ford

2009, Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet

2010, Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet

2011, Kurt Busch, Dodge

2012, Brad Keselowski, Dodge

2013, Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet

2014, Jeff Gordon, Chevrolet

2015, Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet

2016, Martin Truex, Jr., Toyota

2017, Kyle Busch, Toyota

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races twice annually at Dover. The above winners represent the second race of the season.

Playoff Drivers at Dover*:

(Driver, Races, Wins, Top-Fives, Top-10s, Poles)

Kyle Busch, 27, 3, 12, 16, 1

Kevin Harvick, 35, 2, 6, 16, 1

Martin Truex, Jr., 25, 2, 5, 14, 3

Brad Keselowski, 17, 1, 5, 8, 1

Clint Bowyer, 25, 0, 3, 14, 0

Joey Logano, 19, 0, 3, 10, 0

Kurt Busch, 36, 1, 8, 10, 0

Ryan Blaney, 5, 0, 0, 2, 0

Chase Elliott, 5, 0, 4, 4, 0

Kyle Larson, 9, 0, 4, 7, 1

Aric Almirola, 12, 0, 2, 3, 0

Alex Bowman, 5, 0, 0, 0, 0

*Data according to Racing-Reference.com