Toyota Owners 400 Preview: Racing Perfection
Toyota Owners 400 Preview: Racing Perfection

This article is part of our Weekly Preview series.

The Monster Energy Cup Series will continue short track racing this weekend as we head to Richmond.  The small Virginia oval plays host Sunday night to the Toyota Owners 400.  Richmond Raceway is a three-quarter mile oval with median banking of 14 degrees in all the turns.  The racing result is the contact and fender-beating of Bristol, with the feel of Charlotte due to the higher speeds.  Drivers run average laps of close to 130 mph which is much faster than the half-mile short tracks, but with the same close quarters racing that produce excitement in abundance.  Much like the other short tracks on the circuit, drivers must conserve their brakes.  The continual braking in the corners can be tough on those brake pads and rotors.  Over the years many fast cars at RIR have retired to the garage early due to overdriving in the corners and lack of brake preservation.  

Also, watch the fuel gage closely.  Unlike most short tracks, the long green flag runs can turn any Richmond race into a pit strategy and fuel conservation affair.  All-in-all Richmond may be one of the best spectator tracks in the series.  It's the fun competition, momentum swings and varied strategies that make this one of the best venues on the Monster Energy Cup Series tour.  It will be hard to top that just-completed Bristol race, but when you take into account the parity we've seen in the Monster Energy Cup Series thus far this season, we could be in

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Mark Taylor
Taylor is RotoWire's senior NASCAR writer. A nine-time FSWA finalist, Taylor was named the Racing Writer of the Year in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2016 and 2017. He is also a military historian, focused specifically on World War II and the U.S. Navy's efforts in the Pacific.
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