By Jeff O'Brien


Dixie Vodka 400

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Site: Homestead, Florida

Schedule: Sunday, race, 3:30 p.m.

Track: Homestead-Miami Speedway

HOMESTEAD, FLORIDA – JUNE 14: Local members of the U.S. military and their families watch the NASCAR Cup Series Dixie Vodka 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on June 14, 2020 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Race distance: 267 laps, 400 miles

Last year: Chase Elliott won in mid-August after starting seventh.

Last race: Christopher Bell passed Joey Logano with two laps to go on the Daytona road course and cruised to his first Cup Series victory.

Fast facts: Denny Hamlin, the only driver to finish in the top five in both races run in 2021, leads the point standings by 12 over Logano, who has been in position to win each of the first two races, but has failed to cash in. … Kevin Harvick is third, followed by Bell and reigning series champion Chase Elliott. … Elliott led a race-high 45 laps on the road course but finished 21st. … Michael McDowell, who won the Daytona 500, finished eighth. This is just the third time the series has started a season with a pair of first-time winners.

Next race: Pennzoil 400 presented by Jiffy Lube, March 7, Las Vegas Motor Speedway



Contender Boats 250

Site: Homestead, Florida

Schedule: Saturday, race, 4:30 p.m.

Track: Homestead-Miami Speedway

HOMESTEAD, FLORIDA – JUNE 14: Chase Briscoe, driver of the #98 Ford Performance Racing School Ford, and Noah Gragson, driver of the #9 PUBG MOBILE Chevrolet, lead the field during the NASCAR Xfinity Series Contender Boats 250 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on June 14, 2020 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Race distance: 167 laps, 250 miles

Last year: Harrison Burton won from the pole position.

Last race: Ty Gibbs became the sixth driver in history to win his first career start in the series, taking the lead on a restart in overtime and cruising to a comfortable victory on the Daytona road course.

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Fast facts: Gibbs, 18 and the grandson of team owner Joe Gibbs, also became the youngest driver to win on a road course in the series. Austin Cindric, at 20, had been the youngest. … Cindric, the reigning series champion, leads again after two races and is one of two drivers with two top-five finishes. Jeb Burton is the other and sixth in points. … Burton’s cousin, Harrison Burton, is second, already 24 points behind Cindric, followed by Daniel Hemric, Brandon Brown, and Myatt Snyder.

Next race: Alsco Uniforms 300, March 6, Las Vegas Motor Speedway.



Last race: Ben Rhodes made it two wins in as many races this year, holding off 2020 series champion Sheldon Creed over three overtime restarts on Daytona’s road course.

DAYTONA BEACH, FL – FEBRUARY 20: Tyler Reddick, driver of the #19 DrawTite Ford, leads a pack of trucks during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway on February 20, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

Next race: Silver State 200, March 5, Las Vegas Motor Speedway.


Last race: Lewis Hamilton completed his sixth championship season in seven years even though Max Verstappen held off the Mercedes duo of Hamilton and Valterri Bottas for his second victory of the season.

Next race: Bahrain Grand Prix, March 28, Sakhir, Bahrain (season opener)


Last race: Scott Dixon clinched his sixth series championship, holding off Josef Newgarden despite Newgarden’s Dixon-matching fourth victory of the season.

Next race: April 18, Birmingham, Alabama (season opener)


Next event: AMALIE Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals, March 11-14, Gainesville, Florida.


Next event: March 5 (Barberville, Florida) and March 6 (Gibsonton, Florida).


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