Food City 500 News and Updates
The Food City 500 is one of the most exciting events of March, taking place at the unforgettable “Last Great Colosseum” Bristol Motor Speedway in Tennessee, the eighth largest sports venue in the world. The Food City 500 was first held in the 1960s and has remained a favorite on the NASCAR circuit, thanks to its short track, intimidating steep banks, tendency for high contact, unusual two pits, all-concrete surface, and stadium seating. The Food City 500 is the fourth race in the Sprint Cup Series and is one of the more expensive races to attend each year. Food City 500 tickets average $167, with a minimum price of $80.
The track at Bristol has undergone numerous resurfacing attempts to make it one of the tightest, loudest and most exciting competitions in the sport. 2012 unveiled the latest installment, in which the third groove was eliminated and the upper groove was reduced to the same degree as the middle of the track. Denny Hamlin won the first victory on the revamped surface, while Kyle Busch set a new qualifying record in 2013: shattering a decade long-stand by taking a mere 14.813 seconds around the half-mile. Last year saw quite an eventful race: Kasey Kahne won his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race, taking the lead after his Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jimmie Johnson blew a tire before the final re-start. Rusty Wallace reigns over the track with six wins to his name, followed by Dale Earnhardt and Darrell Waltrip with five, and Cale Yarborough, Kurt Busch and Jeff Gordon with four.
This year, fans at Bristol Motor Speedway will see how the all-new Chase rules points overhaul will play out. For the latest Sprint Cup Series format, each race winner will automatically get a bid into Chase field, meaning a win at Bristol will (barring a tie-break) get the driver into the postseason. Now, 16 drivers will qualify (15 race winners and one points leader) for the 10-race Chase. The new playoff-feel Chase will feature four rounds: three three-race segments and one season finale, where four drivers will be eliminated after each round. Finally, at Homestead-Miami, the winning driver out of the four remaining will win the Sprint Cup Series championship.