The Good Sam Roadside Assistance 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday, October 7, is a pivotal fourth race in the chase for the Sprint Cup.
It’s a bit of a problematic race for drivers as it usually sees tumultuous finishes.
Brad Keselowski won the May race at Talladega by fending off the pack throughout the entire final lap. That’s a difficult thing to do considering drivers’ ability to slingshot themselves to gain position during the final stretch.
This time around he’s in first place in the Chase and will have the entire field gunning for him on Sunday. He’ll likely race a little less recklessly with so much on the line and six more races to go.
Take a look at some logistics and a look ahead at this weekend’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway.
Where: Talladega Superspeedway, Talladega, Alabama
When: October 7, 2 p.m. ET
Live Stream: ESPN3
Lineup: TBD by Qualifying round (Saturday, Oct. 6 at Noon ET)
Full TV Schedule (via NASCAR.com)
First Practice: Friday, Oct. 5 at 2:30 p.m. ET, SPEED
Final Cup Practice: Friday, Oct. 5 at 4 p.m. ET, SPEED
Qualifying: Saturday, Oct. 6 at Noon ET, SPEED
Good Sam Roadside Assistance 500 Race: Sunday, Oct. 7 at 2 p.m. ET, ESPN
|15||22||Sam Hornish Jr.||Dodge|
|16||23||Robert Richardson Jr.||Chevrolet|
|35||56||Martin Truex Jr.||Toyota|
|39||88||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet|
Drivers to Watch
Keselowski is currently in first place in the Chase points standings as we approach the Talladega Superspeedway race this weekend. He’s got five wins under his belt this season, including one win at Talladega back in May.
Look for the points leader to play it somewhat safe, but his strategy will likely depend on the performance of Jimmie Johnson, who is just five points behind him in the points standings.
Bowyer is the defending race winner from last season and has two wins at Talladega under his hood. He’s currently 25 points behind Keselowski, fourth in the standings, and could use a win at the familiar Talladega as he continues his bid for the Sprint Cup.
He needs to make up some ground on Hamlin, Johnson and Keselowski and should be driving aggressively to make that happen.
Hamlin has started in 13 previous NSCS races at Talladega. He’s finished in the top 10 five times at the track and is currently sitting in third place in the NSCS points race.
A win or another top-10 finish would certainly help Hamlin in the Chase as he's only 15 points behind. He doesn't need a win, but it wouldn't hurt, either.
Predicted Winner: Clint Bowyer
Mike Hoag Jr. is a Breaking News Team writer with Bleacher Report and also covers the NFL and Cleveland Browns for the site.