NASCAR

Rain forces Food City 500 postponement to Monday

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NASCAR fans will have to wait another day for Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series racing to return.

The weekend of the Food City 500 from Bristol Motor Speedway was marred by rain, affecting Cup Series qualifying, the Xfinity Series’ Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 and the K&N Pro Series East’s Zombie Auto 125. Both races endured rain delays during the day; while the Xfinity Series was able to run its full distance, the Pro Series East race was shortened to 70 laps from its scheduled distance of 125. On Sunday, NASCAR announced the Cup race would be moved to Monday at 1 PM Eastern.

“Based on the weather, all the forecasts and the models and all the information we have available to us today,” Cup Series Managing Director Richard Buck stated, “the race has been postponed til tomorrow at 1 PM.”

The Food City 500 is the first race of 2017 to be postponed to Monday and the first since the 2016 Bristol night race to be moved to the next day due to rain. The most recent race to be held on a Monday is the 2016 Axalta “We Paint Winners” 400 at Pocono Raceway. While the Food City 500 itself has been affected by rain in recent years like in 2015, it had never been postponed since 1985, when the initially-scheduled March 31 date was moved to April 6 for rain.

Despite the postponement, the race will continue to be aired on Fox. With the rainout, qualifying was set by owners’ points, which placed points leader Kyle Larson on the pole alongside Chase Elliott.

Featured image courtesy of Wade Payne, the Associated Press

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