GFT Facts & Stats Friday: NASCAR Cup Series Ally 400 at Nashville Superspeedway

Bob Francis - Go Full Throttle
7 min readJun 28, 2024

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28 June 2024
By Bob Francis, Managing Editor
Go Full Throttle Racing News

LEBANON, TN — NASCAR is back in Tennessee’s Music City this weekend for Sunday’s Ally 400 at 2:30 p.m. ET on NBC, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Channel 90) at Nashville Superspeedway. The unique D-shaped, concrete oval that stretches 1.33-miles, is the longest concrete surface track on the 2024 schedule and will have drivers and teams two-stepping to find the perfect set-up for their cars this weekend.

Following a historic New Hampshire Motor Speedway race that concluded the last 86 laps on the damp surface tires, Hendrick Motorsports’ teammates Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott are tied atop the NASCAR Cup Series driver standings with 620 points each, but Larson currently holds the tiebreaker of more wins (3 to 1). Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Denny Hamlin (third, -40 points) and Martin Truex Jr. (fourth, -48 points) are right in the tire tracks of the Hendrick duo in the points.

Last season, Trackhouse Racing’s Ross Chastain, who is currently ninth in the driver standings looking for his first win of 2024, joined Larson (2021) and Elliott (2022) as the third different winner at Nashville Superspeedway.

And it will be interesting to see if another OEM can break through the dominance of Chevrolet at Nashville, as they have won all three of the NASCAR Cup Series events at the 1.33-mile track (2021–2022).

NASCAR Cup Series Ally 400 at Nashville Superspeedway

The Date: Sunday, June 30
The Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
The Purse: $8,915,372

TV: NBC, 3:30 p.m. ET
Radio: PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 399 miles (300 Laps)
Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 90)
Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 185)
Final Stage (Ends on Lap 300)

Track Facts
Track Length: 1.33-Mile Concrete Oval
Race Length: 400 miles (300 laps)
Grandstand Capacity: 40,000
First Race: June 20, 2021 — Ally 400
Banking: Turns 14 degrees; Frontstretch — 9 degrees; Backstretch — 6 degrees
Frontstretch: 2,494 feet
Backstretch: 2,203 feet

Qualifying & Race Records
Qualifying: Aric Almirola, Ford, 161.992 mph, 29.557 secs. June 20, 2021
Race: Ross Chastain, Chevrolet, 132.914 mph, (03:00:07), June 25, 2023

Track Records
Most Wins: 1 — Kyle Larson, Chase Elliott, Ross Chastain
Most Poles: 1 — Aric Almirola, Denny Hamlin, Ross Chastain
Most Top Fives: 3 — Kyle Larson, Ross Chastain
Most Top 10s: 3 — Ross Chastain, Kyle Larson, Christopher Bell

Race Rewind: Nashville Superspeedway edition

With only three NASCAR Cup Series races in the books, here is a look back at the results of each event.

In 2021, Nashville Superspeedway hosted the inaugural NASCAR Cup Series race at the 1.33-mile track, and the event was won by Hendrick Motorsport’s driver and 2021 series champion Kyle Larson. The California native took the win with a Margin of Victory of 4.335 seconds over Trackhouse Racing’s Ross Chastain in second. The race produced 14 lead changes among seven different drivers. Larson led the most laps of the race, spending 264 of the scheduled 300 laps out front (88%).

In 2022, Larson’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate Chase Elliott took home the checkered flag at Nashville Superspeedway. The Dawsonville, Georgia native and 2020 series champion, held off 23XI Racing’s Kurt Busch by a scant .551-second to win. The 2022 Nashville Cup race saw 18 lead changes among seven different leaders. Polesitter Denny Hamlin led the most laps of the 2022 Nashville race with 114 circuits out front.

Then last season, Trackhouse Racing’s Ross Chastain grabbed the checkered flag at Nashville Superspeedway becoming the third different winner in as many races at the track. The Alva, Florida native and generational watermelon farmer, held off Joe Gibbs Racing’s Martin Truex Jr. by a slight .789-second to win. The 2023 Nashville Cup race saw 21 lead changes among 12 different leaders. Polesitter Ross Chastain led the most laps of the 2023 Nashville race with 99 laps out front enroute to the victory.

NASCAR Cup Series 2024 DRIVER RATINGS for the Top 16 in the Driver Standings at Nashville Superspeedway

Chase for a Regular Season Championship tightens

Just eight races to go and the battle for the top spot in the NASCAR Cup Series regular season standings is as tight as it gets — tied.

Hendrick Motorsports teammates Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott are currently tied atop the NASCAR Cup Series driver standings with 620 points each, but Larson has regained the points lead technically due to holding the tiebreaker — most wins (3 to 1).

Forcing Larson and Elliott to keep the pedal to the floor this season are Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin in third in the point standings (-40 back from the lead) and his JGR teammate Martin Truex Jr. (-48) in fourth.

Only one driver can take home the Regular Season Championship trophy and bank the 15 Playoff bonus points that come with it, and if it were to be either Larson, Elliott or Hamlin, they would become just the third different driver since the introduction of the Regular Season Championship to win more than one; joining Martin Truex Jr. (2017, 2023) and Kyle Busch (2018, 2019).

In total only five drivers have won the NASCAR Cup Series Regular Season Championship — Martin Truex Jr. (2023, 2017), Kyle Busch (2019, 2018), Chase Elliott (2022), Kyle Larson (2021) and Kevin Harvick (2020).

Race To The Playoffs: Eight races left in the regular season

For the drivers and teams that have earned a spot in the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs already, these next eight races are a great time to prepare for the postseason, pad Playoff points and set themselves up for the best possible position to finish the regular season. For the drivers and teams not locked into the Playoffs, these next eight races are the final eight chances they have to secure their spot in the coveted postseason.

Playoff Bound:

With 10 drivers in 2024 with wins, only six spot are still up for grabs in the 16-driver Playoff field as the series heads to Nashville Superspeedway this weekend for the Ally 400 (June 30 at 2:30 p.m. ET on NBC, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

The 10 drivers this season currently holding a spot in the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs by virtue of their regular season wins are Kyle Larson (three wins), Denny Hamlin (three), Christopher Bell (three), William Byron (three), Chase Elliott (one), Tyler Reddick (one), Ryan Blaney (one), Brad Keselowski (one), Daniel Suarez (one), Austin Cindric (one).

Interestingly, all 10 of the winners that have earned a spot in the Playoffs this season are former Playoff drivers in their careers.

In The Hot Seats:

The six drivers currently in the NASCAR Cup Series Playoff transfer spots on points are Martin Truex Jr. (+155 points up on postseason cutoff), Ross Chastain (+93), Ty Gibbs (+82), Alex Bowman (+59), Chris Buescher (+50) and two-time Cup Series champion Joey Logano (+13).

Team Penske’s Joey Logano is currently in the most precarious position of the six drivers inside the Playoff cutoff heading into Nashville this weekend, because he holds the 16th and final transfer position on points. If a driver below him in the standings wins over the next eight races, he could find himself bounced out of the Playoffs.

Logano currently has just a 13-point advantage on 23XI Racing’s Bubba Wallace who is in 17th — the first spot outside the Playoffs’ cutoff.

Outside Looking In:

There are currently 18 drivers still eligible to make the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs that are without a win and below the postseason cut line in points following New Hampshire.

23XI Racing’s Bubba Wallace (-13 points), is one of seven drivers currently below the Playoff cutline that has made the Cup Series Playoffs previously, along with Chase Briscoe (-25 points), two-time Cup champion Kyle Busch (-45 points), Michael McDowell (-99), Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (-132), Erik Jones (-151) and Austin Dillon (-197).

GO FULL THROTTLE NASCAR CUP SERIES BOX SCORES

GO FULL THROTTLE NASCAR FANTASY LIVE BOX SCORES

The Go Full Throttle #AI Race Prediction model delivered 175 points from the USA TODAY 301 results in NASCAR Fantasy Live — TMD NASCAR League play. GFT AI 1 improves to 740th place vs 4,642 players in the #TMDNASCAR league, still outside the Top 10 at 15.94% vs all players.

Initial GFT NASCAR Fantasy Live Picks for the ALLY 400 at Nashville Superspeedway

**NOTE** Be sure to follow us on X (aka Twitter) to see the updated GFT NASCAR Fantasy Live picks AFTER our AI models ingest the Practice and Qualifying data. For a Sunday race, this usually happens overnight Saturday and is published Sunday morning at least 2 hours before the green flag.

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Bob Francis - Go Full Throttle

Go Full Throttle editors and reporters bring you news & commentary on NASCAR, F1, IndyCar, and World of Outlaws. Member: National Motorsports Press Association