2023 NASCAR Preview: Week 2 – California

NASCAR begins the West Coast Swing!

With a wild end to the DAYTONA 500, and an unexpected winner in Ricky Stenhouse Jr., we now find ourselves on the opposite side of the country at the start of our West Coast Swing. Rain has wiped out any Practice or Qualifying for the Cup guys, delayed the Xfinity Series race until Sunday night, and no one really sure what to expect from the green track.

Here’s what to look for:

Kyle Larson is our defending winner of this race, his 2nd victory at Fontana. He led 28 laps in that one, launching from the 13th position. Today he’ll start 15th after getting swallowed up in the final accident of the DAYTONA 500.

-Another Kyle — Kyle Busch — leads all active drivers here with 4 Wins. He’s also got the best average finish over the last nine races (6.3), with six Top 5s mixed in. He’s been running at the finish at each of those events, something he looks to keep going today and capitalize on this venue.

Austin Dillon managed a 2nd last year, the only time he’s had a single-digit finish at this track. There was no race in 2021, and he finished 24th in 2020. He’s finished 10th or 11th a few times, could this be another opportunity to record a Top 5?

Erik Jones finished 3rd here last year. It seems like a bit of an outlier, but is it? He finished 19th in 2020, but his other three finishes have been 12th, 10th, and 7th (and a five-race average of 10.2). Each of those results have stemmed from a much better starting position, however; today he rolls off 34th.

Joey Logano has the next best average finish of drivers active in this race (10.6), and the 2nd most total points acquired behind Busch. Going back to last year, he’s got a streak of 1st or 2nd. He pulled out a 2nd last Sunday, could he follow up with a big Win today, or another Top 2?

Back to California, and back to an awesome sandwich we had back in 2020…

Auto Club Sandwich (Photo: Lisa Kuhmann)

The Auto Club Sandwich! That’s what we call it, it is actually the Bel-Air Club (and modified for tastes). I really like it a lot, Lisa does a great job throwing it together. I’m a dude who likes multiple meats on a sandwich, and this one gives us ham, turkey, bacon, and eggs, if you want to count a fourth protein. Enough typing, more eating! (And we’ll have some Key Lime Pie after, too. Back by popular demand, Lisa made another delicious pie after last week! Awesome!)

Coverage of the race starts on FOX at 3:30pm, green flag scheduled for 3:47pm.

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