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Monday, May 27
The Indiana Daily Student

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NASCAR Cup Series returns to action, heads to Nashville Superspeedway for Ally 400

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Following an off weekend for Father’s Day, the NASCAR Cup Series returns to the track this weekend at Nashville Superspeedway in Nashville, Tennessee. Just two weekends ago, Joe Gibbs Racing’s Martin Truex Jr. was victorious at Sonoma Raceway for his second victory of the season. 

Since the NASCAR Cup Series held its first race at Nashville Superspeedway in June 2021, each of the two runnings have been dominated by Hendrick Motorsports. Kyle Larson was victorious in the inaugural running and Chase Elliott conquered the 1.33-mile concrete oval in 2022. 

After missing six races earlier this season due to a fractured tibia suffered in a snowboarding accident on March 3, Elliott is in a must-win situation to qualify for the NASCAR Playoffs. The final race of the regular season takes place at Daytona International Speedway August 26. 

Heading into the Ally 400 I have my eyes on a few drivers who could emerge victorious Sunday night. 

Personal thoughts: 

Hendrick Motorsports’ Kyle Larson 

The 2020 series champion has two wins to his name so far this season at Richmond Raceway and Martinsville Speedway. Not only has Larson been successful so far in his career at Nashville, but he also had a pair of strong finishes in the past two races — finishing eighth at Sonoma and fourth at Worldwide Technology Raceway. 

The Elk Grove, California native is currently 10th in the championship standings after a solid season up to this point. If Larson manages the race properly, a trip to victory lane could be in the cards for him. 

23XI’s Tyler Reddick 

In his first season at 23XI, Tyler Reddick has put together a solid campaign so far. A historically successful road course racer so far in his career, Reddick struggled at Sonoma Raceway two weekends ago with a 33rd place finish. 

Heading to a concrete oval track this weekend, Reddick has shown his speed so far by topping the time charts in the first practice for the Ally 400 on Friday. If Reddick and his Michael Jordan co-owned 23XI No. 45 team can keep themselves out of trouble, a top-five finish is certainly possible. 

Trackhouse’s Ross Chastain 

Ross Chastain has been the subject of criticism so far this season, as competitors have bashed his over-aggressiveness. Chastain has been a non-factor in the past two races, possibly because he and team owner Justin Marks spoke about his need to be patient throughout each race. 

Although we haven’t seen Chastain be the culprit of a wreck recently, his aggressiveness is what has made him successful so far in his second season with Trackhouse. If Chastain and his team is able to take advantage of his opportunities Sunday, a trip to victory lane could be in the works for the first time this season. 

My prediction to win: Kyle Larson 

My long shot to win: Ty Gibbs 

The Ally 400 at Nashville Superspeedway be televised on NBC at 7 p.m. EST Sunday. After a weekend off, the stars of the NASCAR Cup Series are set for what is sure to be an exciting Sunday evening. 

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