Reviewing the Nascar Bristol Dirt Race

A lot of my writing is about country music, but I am more than a one-trick pony. I have been a Nascar fan my entire life, so when I heard that they were racing in the dirt, I knew that I had to watch it. I had no idea what to expect; I wasn’t sure if the dirt would make the race slower or race like the modified cars and drift. I quickly got my answer as I got to watch forty cars slipping and sliding sideways throughout the corners of Bristol Motor speedway.

           People who were trying to watch the races over the weekend saw the torrential downpours that hit Bristol. The truck race lasted about two laps, but the trucks’ grilles and windshields were caked with mud. Nascar decided to delay the race because they didn’t want every motor in the event to explode. The result was two races on Monday, the truck race was at noon, and the cup race was at four. That meant that the track had minimal time to be re-prepped between the races.

The result was having a concrete strip in the center, surrounded by two dirt groves on the track’s higher and lower parts. The concrete was still dirty, so it was slick, but it wasn’t pure dirt. It’s hard to blame Nascar for this; forty cars doing 100 miles per hour for three hours straight will do that. This created humps in the track, and as a result, there were a lot of cars rear-ending each other because they hit the hump and slowed down quickly. The top lane had issues, and multiple cars just spun because they lost control and couldn’t recover.

Like Christopher Bell and Kyle Larson, the traditional dirt racers were favored at the beginning of the race; however, the dirt proved that a favorite doesn’t mean shit. In fact, Bell and Larson even came together on lap 51, knocking Bell out. The less favored cars, Martin Truex Jr. and Daniel Suarez, showed up to race.

Coming to the end of the race, it looked like Joey Logano had it easy. He checked out on Truex and Suarez, with Denny Hamlin being his last main competition. However, with just five laps to go, Hamlin hit the wall, and Logano was all alone with lapped traffic between him and the trailing Hamlin. However, with three laps left, a car spun out, causing Logano to have to hold off a pissed-off Hamlin in second and a fast Martin Truex in third in a shoot-out restart. When the green started, though, Hamlin tried the high line outside lane, and Logano was able to checkout without much of a problem. At the end of the day, the Connecticut boy won the dirt race on the Tennessee red dirt.

I think that Nascar learned a lot from this weekend, and although it wasn’t perfect, they should absolutely do it again. The beginning of the race wasn’t very exciting; there were too many cautions and many spins. However, the third stage was excellent, the cars were absolutely whipping, sliding all over, and it capped off the race in a great way. I hope that it doesn’t rain next year, and Nascar can take everything they learned this year and do it even better in 2022. Congratulations again to Joey Logano for winning the first dirt race in 51 years, and I can’t wait for the next one!


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