There is nothing like Saturday night racing under the lights. And if your track only gets one race a year as Saturday night showdown is a pretty good one to have. This week’s race in Kentucky is the only stop of the year for NASCAR’s top series in the Bluegrass State. And drivers say the words for the night are ‘rough’ and ‘bumpy.’
“It’s an extremely rough race track,” said Brian Vickers. “I broke a wheel last time I was there so that tells you it’s pretty rough. I like tracks with some bumps and character, but Kentucky is really rough.”
As the new kid on the block when it comes to Sprint Cup series tracks, the list of former winners is pretty short. Kyle Busch won the inaugural race, with Brad Keselowski and Matt Kenseth also owning Sprint Cup wins at Kentucky.
“We’ve only raced there a couple times,” said Kenseth. “It’s fun to go there and it’s a neat track and we had a great race there last year. It’s a cool place, but it’s really rough and it has a lot of character.”
Keselowski will lead the field to the green from the pole, with Joey Logano, Jeff Gordon, Denny Hamlin and Kevin Harvick rounding out the top five.
"It's a huge morale booster for us and we've got to make it count on race day,” said Keselowski. Qualifying is great, but on Monday nobody talks about who won the pole -- they talk about who won the race. We want to be that guy."
The green flag is set to drop at about 6:45 Central time. Kansas native Clint Bowyer rolls off 11th.