Mother Nature continues to sling mud on plans for NASCAR to run its first Cup Series race on dirt in over 50 years. After rain forced the cancellation of four qualifying heat races Saturday evening, the race, scheduled for Sunday, has been postponed to Monday.
According to NASCAR, the postponement is “due to overnight weather and forecast — the Sullivan County flood warnings and safety concerns.”
Now, the Food City Dirt Race is scheduled for an approximate 4 p.m. ET green flag on Monday. NASCAR wants to have two hour race break following the conclusion the Pinty’s Truck Race on Dirt for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series that is scheduled to get underway at noon Monday.
The Truck Series race originally was scheduled for Saturday night but was first postponed to 9 p.m. Sunday, following the expected running of the Cup Series race on Sunday. The original weekend schedule had the Truck race following qualifying heat races to set the starting grid for both series. The first of four expected heats for the Truck Series took the green flag after a slight delay but was red-flagged for mud after one lap. Rain soon followed.
As a result of the cancellation of heat races, starting grids for both series were set using NASCAR’s formula that includes owner points and the finishing order fastest lap of the previous race. That formula put Kyle Larson on the pole for the Food City Dirt Race, but he’ll have to drop to the back before the initial green flag because of an engine change.
Denny Hamlin is the other official front-row starter.
FOOD CITY DIRT RACE STARTING LINEUP