NASCAR Pre-Race Media: Michigan Track Trends

TRACK: Michigan International Speedway (2 mile oval) DISTANCE: 200 Laps — STAGE 1: 60 Laps, STAGE 2: 60 Laps, FINAL STAGE: 80 Laps, MILES (400 Miles)


Track History/Trends

  • Top Drivers: Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano, Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr., Kurt Busch, Kyle Larson
  • Trending Down: Ryan Blaney, Aric Almirola, Cole Custer, Austin Dillon, Tyler Reddick, William Byron, Alex Bowman, Chase Elliott.
  • Since the stage era began in 2017, all eight Michigan races were won by a driver getting stage points in the first stage. Five of the eight opening stages saw the eventual race winner come home in the top three. In 2019, the drivers that won the race ended up giving up Stage points in the second stage and positioning themselves for the win in the end. Not last year, Harvick swept the stages in the first race and took the stage win in Stage 2. The difference was, the race distances were shorter due to being a doubleheader last year.
  • Hendrick Motorsports hasn’t won a race at Michigan since 2014.
  • Toyota hasn’t won at Michigan since 2015 as that’s their lone MIS win in their last 18 tries.
  • Ford has won 6 straight at Michigan.
  • Four of the last five Michigan winners have come from the top three starting spots. Furthermore, 10 of the last 11 have come from the top 12.

Track Comparison

The sister track to Fontana. The main difference between Michigan and Fontana though is the actual racing surface. Michigan was repaved recently while Fontana has one of the oldest surfaces on the schedule.

Like Pocono, Michigan is big enough to pit and not lose a lap so long as you’re running near the midpack on up. That opens up pit strategy calls to give up stage points for track position. There’s enough space to pass, but you have to have great speed as well as handling to get through the long sweeping corners. Can take 2 tires or no tires to make up ground too.

This is the second to last race of the regular season.

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