Weekend Preview: FedEx/Autism Speaks 400

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Sunday NASCAR heads to Dover and WBKR’s Moon Mullins and Blake Smith prepare you for it.

After last weekend’s eventful Coca-Cola 600, Kevin Harvick found himself in victory lane. In a race that saw 11 cautions for 61 laps, there was plenty of excitement on the track. The race also had three red flag periods for 36 minutes. Perhaps the biggest story of the weekend was the malfunction of the FOX Sports overhead camera. A cable for the camera fell causing the first red flag with damage to 3 cars including the leader, Kyle Busch (pictured above after winning Truck Race yesterday). 10 fans were also injured by the loose cable. An announcement is expected early next week as to the cause of the malfunction.

Dover’s Weekend Schedule:

The “Monster Mile” has a full schedule this weekend as the Sprint Cup, Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series all take place there. Yesterday, Kyle Busch outran all the young drivers. He won Friday’s Lucas Oil 200 race. Kyle will try to win all three NASCAR races at Dover International Speedway this weekend.

The Sprint Cup Series will take to the track today for practice as the teams prepare for Sunday’s 400 miles at the track. The NASCAR Nationwide Series will take to the track for their qualifying session in preparation for their race later on Saturday afternoon. That race is heard on News Talk 1490 WOMI or at www.1490womi.com.

Sunday marks the 87th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Dover International Speedway. The track known as “The Monster Mile” held its first race in 1969 and since 1971 has held two races each season.  The high speeds, big corners and high banking turns brings unique challenges. Jeff Gordon told media this week, “It’s a track where you’re on the edge with no a lot of room for error”.

Paint Scheme/Chassis Notes:

#2 Brad Keselowski: After serving his penalty, crew chief Paul Wolfe will return to the track this weekend at Dover. They will bring Chassis # PRS-849 which finished 9th at Texas.

Kasey Kahne #5: Kasey Kahne will return to his familiar blue Farmer’s Insurance paint scheme for this weekend. Crew chief, Kenny Francis will unload chassis #5-769 for Sunday’s race. This is the same chassis that Kahne raced to his only win of the season with at Bristol.

#10 Danica Patrick: Danica Patrick will be using a “hand me down” for this weekend’s race. Chassis #10-579 was used by Ryan Newman in 2010 and 2011 but has since been completely over-hauled and turned into a Gen-6 Chevrolet SS. She better have a good rear view mirror to see if boyfriend Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. is about to ram her as he did in last weekend’s Coca-Cola 600, knocking her out of the race. Well, that’s the way it looked to me, Moon.

#14 Tony Stewart: Tony Stewart will be racing a black, yellow and blue Chevrolet SS in this weekend’s race. The car will have Code 3 Associates “Helping Oklahoma” on the hood. Code 3 associates have been a partner of Stewart Haas Racing since 2012. They are a non-profit association specializing in animal rescue and recovery in disaster areas. Stewart will be racing Chassis 14-722 which was raced at both Pocono races in 2012,

#17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. will pilot Chassis # RK-820 which he finished 11th in at Kansas. Ricky will be in the blue and yellow Best Buy colors this weekend.

#20 Matt Kenseth: Matt Kenseth will be in the Dollar General Store colors this weekend at Dover. Kenseth made his first career start at Dover subbing for Bill Elliott in 1998. Kenseth scored a top-20 finish in his first start. Kenseth also earned his first pole at Dover International Speedway. He told the media this week he looks forward to racing at Dover because, “You really have to attack … it’s difficult to get a fast lap by yourself”.

#29 Kevin Harvick:  Harvick will race chassis No. 383 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable in the FedEx 400 Benefiting Autism Speaks. The California native last piloted this Chevrolet at Darlington Raceway in May, collecting a fifth-place finish.

#39 Ryan Newman: Newman will debut a new car for this weekend’s race. Newman will be in Chassis #39-761 which has only been in the wind tunnel this season. The car will debut with the Haas-Automation Colors.

#48 Jimmie Johnson: Johnson leads all active drivers with seven wins at Dover’s Monster Mile.  Dover’s “Miles the Monster” character won’t be the only monster in Dover. Johnson will be running the “Monster’s Inc. University” colors for this weekend’s race. He is also donating any winnings from Sunday’s race to go towards tornado recovery in Oklahoma. Johnson was in the OK state this week helping his sponsor Lowe’s in rebuilding efforts.

#88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr.: Chassis #88-745 will be used by this weekend’s National Guard team. Earnhardt Jr. finished 9th with this chassis at Darlington.

As mentioned earlier, Jimmie Johnson leads all active drivers with seven wins at Dover. Blake expects Jimmie Johnson and the Monster’s Inc. team to get win number eight and defeat the Monster to go on to victory lane Sunday.  Moon would like to see Danica Patrick win one, but not when she’s driving a hand-me-down.

Tune in at 11AM on Sunday for coverage of the FedEx/Autism Speaks 400 on WBKR and WBKR.com!

- Blake Smith and Moon Mullins