Jul 5, 2011

The NASCAR season reaches its halfway point as it rolls into Kentucky Speedway this weekend. The NASCAR Camping World Truck and Nationwide series have been racing at Kentucky for a decade now, and they will kick off the weekend with the Truck series on Thursday and the Nationwide Series on Friday. The Sprint Cup Series will take the green flag for the first time at Kentucky Speedway on Saturday.

The king of inaugural races, Jeff Gordon, will attempt to be the first to win at Kentucky. Gordon has three inaugural event wins among his 84 career victories, including the inaugural event at Kansas Speedway in 2001.

The Truck Series returns to action Thursday for the first time since June 10. The Championship contenders are sure to have Kentucky marked on their calendar because six out of the 11 previous Kentucky winners have captured the Camping World Truck Series championship trophy in the same season.

Many Cup drivers are pulling double duty this weekend for added seat time at the facility.  Kasey Kahne, Kyle Busch, Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, Mark Martin, Kevin Harvick, Carl Edwards and David Reutimann are scheduled to race in both events this weekend.

Logano is on the right track to turn his season around he’s going to Kentucky with momentum on his side. Last weekend, he won the Nationwide race and finished third in the Sprint Cup race at Daytona. The week before, he started from the pole and finished sixth in the Cup Series race at Infineon.

“Momentum is a really big deal in our sport. I think in any sport it really is,” said Logano. “That’s something we needed as a team a lot lately. We’ve been in a hole and I think we’re doing a really good job digging ourselves out of it right now.”

The recent hot streak has Logano up to 20th in the Cup point standings and he returns to a track where he has had some success. He has won the past three Nationwide Series races from the pole and will try to make it4-for-4 Friday.

For the first time in 10 weeks, Edwards is not the Cup Series points leader going into this weekend’s event. After finishing seventh at Daytona, Harvick took over the point lead from Edwards, who finished 37th.  After Daytona, David Ragan and Denny Hamlin occupy the two wild card Chase positions. They are the only two drivers with victories outside of the top 10 and inside the top 20.