kobalt 400, nascar las vegas

NASCAR is coming to Las Vegas

The NASCAR season started two weeks ago in Daytona, Florida where stock car racing began. After a stop in Atlanta last weekend, it moves on to Las Vegas this weekend for the Kobalt 400. The big event is set for 3:30 p.m. eastern time Sunday and will be broadcast on Fox Sports.

There will be two races. The Kobalt 400 is the main event in the Spring Cup series. The Xfinity series Boyd Gaming 300 is at 4 p.m. eastern on Saturday and will be on FS1 for television viewers. The race week has several opportunities for fans to enjoy the cars and preparations for the race itself. On Thursday there will be testing from noon until 6 p.m. for cars involved in both races. On Friday there is practice from 1:30 to about 7 p.m. for both series. Pole position qualifying is set for 7:45 p.m. for the Sprint Cup race.

On Saturday there is more Sprint Cup practice starting late morning. In the afternoon there is the Xfinity pole qualifying, and the Xfinity race follows at 4 p.m. Eastern.

The season is still early, but drivers will still be trying to establish themselves for the season at Las Vegas. At Daytona Toyota cars were dominant, taking three of the top four positions with Denny Hanlin winning. Last week in Atlanta, Chevrolets took three of the top four, with Jimmie Johnson rolling to victory in his Chevy. 

The track is different in Las Vegas, though it is a long one, with a 1.5 mile oval track. Fans can experience the track up close with the annual track walk held on Sunday before the big race. Fans can also participate in the Richard Petty Driving Experience rides on Saturday. Fans can ride in a NASCAR racing car with a trained instructor and experience to some degree what drivers experience on the track. There is also a driver and memorabilia auction to be held on Thursday of race week.

Event officials have also put together an app for fans to use. The free app that can be downloaded has lots of information, maps, shuttle routs, daily schedules and any information you might need while at the track. There is also live audio of all the action including for time trials and qualifying. Fans not at the track might enjoy following the activities with the app also.

Racing has been held at this track for about 20 years, but the first NASCAR Spring Cup was held in 1998 and was won by Mark Martin. Kevin Harvick won the title last year, and the race has been called the Kobalt 400 since 2011. Austin Dillon was last year’s winner in the Xfinity Series.