● Event: Atlanta 400 (Round 19 of 36)
● Time/Date: 7 p.m. EDT on Sunday, July 9
● Location: Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia
● Layout: 1.54-mile oval
● Laps/Miles: 260 laps/400 miles
● Stage Lengths: Stage 1: 60 laps / Stage 2: 100 laps / Final Stage: 100 laps
● TV/Radio: USA / PRN / SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Notes of Interest
● Chase Briscoe, driver of the No. 14 Magical Vacation Planner Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing, is set for his fourth start on the reconfigured 1.54-mile Atlanta Motor Speedway oval. The NASCAR Cup Series returns to oval racing following the inaugural Chicago street race last Sunday, where Briscoe finished 20th, his best in the last four races.
● The 28-year-old driver has shown improvement since reuniting with crew chief Richard Boswell. He qualified 16th at Chicago – his best in the last seven races – and finished 10th in the second stage before pit strategy late in the race left the No. 14 Ford Mustang team battling for its 10th top-20 of the season.
● In three starts at the superspeedway-style intermediate track in Hampton, Georgia, Briscoe has a best finish of 15th, earned in March 2022. He came home 24th in the first visit to Atlanta earlier this year.
● In two outings on Atlanta’s original configuration, Briscoe earned a best finish of 15th in July 2021. He made three starts at Atlanta in the NASCAR Xfinity Series with his best result coming in June 2020, when he finished ninth.
We’re going from a street race to a high-speed, high-banked intermediate oval. Do you enjoy a schedule that allows for so much change from week to week?
“I do. I think that’s what makes us the best. You have to be able to do it all or you’re going to struggle to compete at this level. The Cup Series, in my opinion, is the most diverse series as far as the types of tracks we run. We see road-course ringers come in for a race or two and dirt guys show up for Bristol, and that’s because that opportunity is there for them to put their skill to the test. We’ve seen some guys that are really good in their discipline come in and struggle in the Cup car and I think that shows just how tough it is to do this. I think it makes me a more well-rounded driver to compete on the different types of tracks, and whether we are running well or not, there’s always something I can learn from it.”
Is there anything you can take away from the race earlier this year in Atlanta and apply to this weekend?
“There’s always something you can look back on and try to improve, but I do think the last race was such an anomaly. It was so cold and super windy. We’ll go in this time and it’ll be warmer even though it’s a later race. That really does change a lot, but we at least know what we’ve got to be prepared for.”
How important is track position at Atlanta where you don’t have a chance to practice before the field is set in qualifying?
“With this new car, track position has become very important, but you really have to have your balance figured out at Atlanta compared to some of the other big tracks we race at. As much as we like to say it races like a superspeedway, we’re more reliant on the handling at Atlanta than we would be at Daytona or Talladega. It’s always a good thing to start up front but, if the car isn’t set up right, we’re going to the back quickly and it’ll be hard to make that up.”