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NASCAR at Watkins Glen 2018: Start Time, Ticket Info, Lineup, TV Schedule, More

Chris Roling@@Chris_RolingFeatured ColumnistAugust 4, 2018

Kyle Busch celebrates after winning a NASCAR Cup Series auto race, Sunday, July 29, 2018, in Long Pond, Pa. (AP Photo/Derik Hamilton)
Derik Hamilton/Associated Press

It's an all-out war between Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch as the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads into Sunday afternoon's GoBowling at The Glen at Watkins Glen International. 

Parity looked like it was starting to creep its way into the leaderboard equation until Harvick captured another checkered flag at New Hampshire, followed by Busch responding in kind at Pocono.

For those counting, both superstars now have six wins apiece on the season and are two of the four drivers with multiple wins on the season—and only two of seven drivers outright with a victory. 

This battle for the ages continues Sunday over three more stages and just over 220 miles at The Glen in New York, another road course bound to see some aggressive driving and perhaps a shakeup to the leaderboard. 

Whether a fan wants to see the top two keep dueling or newcomers shake things up, NASCAR couldn't start the month of August in a better way. 

              

Viewing Details

Where: Watkins Glen International

When: Sunday, 3 p.m. ET

Watch: NBC

Live Stream: NBC Sports Live

Tickets: StubHub

                 

GoBowling at The Glen

1. Kurt Busch

2. Martin Truex Jr.

3. Kyle Busch

4. Denny Hamlin

5. Ryan Blaney 

6. Brad Keselowski 

7. Erik Jones

8. Alex Bowman 

9. Daniel Suarez

10. Chase Elliott

Note: Qualifying is Saturday. 

               

2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Standings

1. Kyle Busch891
2. Kevin Harvick843
3. Martin Truex Jr.762
4. Clint Bowyer677
5. Joey Logano690
6. Erik Jones533
7. Austin Dillon402
8. Kurt Busch677
9. Brad Keselowski644
10. Kyle Larson626
11. Denny Hamlin618
12. Ryan Blaney612
13. Aric Almirola587
14. Chase Elliott569
15. Jimmie Johnson547
16. Alex Bowman496
ESPN.com.

          

Drivers to Watch

Martin Truex Jr.

Derik Hamilton/Associated Press

Fans who seek parity might not want to hear it, but Martin Truex Jr. might be in a position to win yet another race. 

Truex is the closest thing the series has to touching Busch and Harvick at this point. In any other season, his four wins would seem outstanding, yet he's still two behind the six each held by the guys in front of him on the leaderboard. 

But heading into The Glen, Truex has an interesting opportunity to make some history thanks to his recent dominance on road courses: 

NBC Sports @NBCSports

Martin Truex Jr. looks to match Tony Stewart’s road course win streak from 2004-05 https://t.co/QISpoOPokU https://t.co/LH4HAbkXQo

"I have a lot of years of experience racing at the Glen," Truex said, according to Daniel McFadin of NBCSports.com. "And right now I am with a great team which gives me all the pieces to be able to win races at different tracks. Hopefully we can go to the Glen this weekend and do it again. We know that a good qualifying spot is key. Starting up front sets the tone for the race."

Granted, detractors might point out Truex finished 15th in his last showing, but it's easy to forgive—he's otherwise the driver who has five finishes of fourth or better over his five outings before that, including two wins. 

To top it off, Truex won this event last year, making him a clear-cut favorite to inch closer to the heavyweights. 

     

Erik Jones

Derik Hamilton/Associated Press

Those who don't want to see the heavyweights keep dominating the scene might want to throw some support behind Erik Jones. 

Jones took advantage of a chaotic event at Daytona in the middle of July to secure his first checkered flag of the season. Seemingly from out of nowhere, Jones now has five top-10 finishes over his last six outings, the exception a not-so-bad 16th-place showing in New Hampshire (he was occasionally finishing in the 20s before the hot streak). 

Besides being the typical underdog most can get behind, Jones is an interesting success story because he's the first to emerge from the Toyota Racing Development and shake up NASCAR. 

"It's really neat to be the first guy to come through that program to make it to the Cup Series," Jones said, according to John Smallwood of Philly.com. "Obviously, there are only a limited number of spots on the Cup Series. … It's not easy to break into NASCAR, and to have a manufacturer create a development program that reached out to help young drivers was a huge shift in things."

This success story is just what the series needs right now. While Jones doesn't necessarily need another win for playoff purposes, it sure wouldn't hurt to climb up over the 600-point mark and get in a better position to move past guys like Joey Logano or get even at two wins with Clint Bowyer. 

          

Kyle Busch

Derik Hamilton/Associated Press

Busch did it again a week ago—and he might be just getting started. 

A two-time winner of Sunday's event already, Busch could make it three and two in a row during the latest hot streak after leading 52 laps in Pocono before heading to Victory Lane. 

In the process of his latest triumph, Busch tied Tony Stewart for 13th on the all-time list at 49 wins, which Stewart had something to say about: 

Tony Stewart @TonyStewart

Congrats on win #49 today @KyleBusch . There’s many more to come. Proud of you 👍🏼👍🏼

Other drivers haven't shied away from praise recently either. 

"They outexecute what their car is capable of every single week," Denny Hamlin said, according to ESPN.com's Bob Pockrass. "He qualifies well. He doesn't lose his track position throughout the course of a race, and at the end, the pit crew picks up three or four spots, and he restarts from the front row."

Context—Busch started 28th at Pocono. He still won, just like he did at his worst starting position of the year (32nd) at Richmond back in April. 

So while there might be a certain sense of dread for some that the same guys keep winning, Busch at least keeps it entertaining by being able to do it from anywhere in the field. 

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