2020 NASCAR Cup Series preview: Homestead

Photo by Sean Gardner | Getty Images

NASCAR’s premier series will close out a four-race weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway with the Dixie Vodka 400 on Sunday. It is the 12th race of the Cup Series season, which will complete one-third of 2020. This will be the first time that Homestead has not hosted the season finale since 2001.

Stages for Sunday end on lap 80, lap 160 and the finish on lap 267. There will be a competition caution during the first stage.

Homestead is similar to that of Atlanta Motor Speedway and Darlington Raceway in terms of the abrasive racing surface and the rapid tire wear. What makes Homestead unique is the progressive banking in the turns and running right next to the wall serves as the preferred line for a majority of the race.

Defending Homestead winner and defending Cup Series champion Kyle Busch will start fourth. He has two wins at the track and won Saturday’s truck series. He has finished inside the top ten in seven of the last eight races at Homestead.

Kevin Harvick boasts the best average finish of any active driver at the track. In 19 races, he has an average finish of 6.4 with 17 top 10s. His lone win at Homestead came in 2014 when he won his first Cup championship. Harvick will start seventh on Sunday.

Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Denny Hamlin and Martin Truex Jr. have both won at Homestead (Hamlin twice). In 15 races each, both men have scored 10 top-10 finishes.

A driver to have your eye on Sunday is Austin Dillon. Aside from a 25th-place finish in his first career run at Homestead in 2014, he’s finished in the top 15 in every race at the track and has improved his finish or finished in the same spot every year. He scored an eighth-place finish last year with the current aero package. Dillon will start 16th.

You can watch Sunday’s race on Fox or listen to the race on the Motor Racing Network. Coverage begins at 3:30 p.m. EST.

Starting lineup: https://www.jayski.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/31/2020/06/11/2020-12cup-lineup.pdf

Goodyear tire notes: https://www.jayski.com/2020/06/11/goodyear-fast-facts-homestead-3/

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