NASCAR Drivers will try NOT to Get Sideways at Darlington

Cars racing at Darlington Raceway 05-09-21
Cars racing at Darlington Raceway 05-09-21 9Photo credit: YouTube)

The NASCAR Cup Series is heading to Darlington Raceway this weekend for the Goodyear 400.

The most important thing for the drivers to achieve on a track that is this hard to race on is not to get sideways. The track is large enough to reach speeds that getting sideways will likely end your day. Recovering from a slide or spin at Darlington without hitting another car or the wall is typically not something that happens.

Drivers will also be racing high on the track right next to the wall. This has been the fastest way around the track traditionally. Getting just a little loose and touching the wall is called getting your “Darlington Stripe.” This typically will allow you to race on. However, getting sideways up next to the wall and slamming it would be a different story.

Here is a look at the data for the track and the race.

Darlington Raceway Data
Track Size: 1.366-miles
Banking/Turns 1 & 2: 25 degrees
Banking/Turns 3 & 4: 23 degrees
Banking/Frontstretch: 6 degrees
Banking/Backstretch: 6 degrees
Frontstretch Length:  1,229 feet
Backstretch Length:  1,229 feet

Goodyear 400 Data
Season Race #: 12 of 36 (05-08-22)
Race Length: 293 laps / 400 miles
Stage 1 Length: 90 laps
Stage 2 Length: 95 laps
Final Stage Length: 108 laps

Here are the top 10 active drivers in overall performance at Darlington Raceway in the NASCAR Cup Series.

Kyle Larson – 114.5
Denny Hamlin – 108.9
Kevin Harvick – 104.7
Martin Truex Jr. – 103.8
Kyle Busch – 100.6
Greg Biffle – 98.8
Brad Keselowski – 95.4
Erik Jones – 93.1
Joey Logano – 91.9
Chase Elliott – 89.1

Here are the active drivers that have won in the Cup Series at Darlington.

Denny Hamlin4 Wins2021, 2020, 2017, 2010
Kevin Harvick3 Wins2020, 2020, 2014
Martin Truex Jr2 Wins2021, 2016
Erik Jones1 Win2019
Brad Keselowski1 Win2018
Kyle Busch1 Win2008

With the newest version of the Next Gen Car being figured out by the teams and drivers more each week, this weekend could have some exciting racing for fans to watch. The NASCAR Cup Series race on Mother’s Day could be one mother of a race.

We will see what happens starting at 2:30 p.m. central time (3:30 p.m. eastern time) Sunday, May 8th in the Goodyear 400 from Darlington Raceway.

By: Buck Stevens

Buck Stevens