Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Advocare 500: Brief History & Preview

This Sunday, Nov. 10, will mark the second to last date on NASCAR’s 2013 Sprint Cup Series schedule. Not to be confused with the Advocare 500 held in Atlanta each year (and won by Kyle Busch this past September), the Advocare 500 will take place at the Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. It will be the 25th anniversary of the race at the Phoenix track but only the second year of the Advocare sponsor. 

The race is one of four NASCAR races that are measured in kilometers, along with the Subway Fresh Fit 500, the Toyota/Save Mart 350 and the Cheez-It 355. The distance of the race is 312 miles (502.115 kilometers) and the winner needs to lap the track 312 times to win. 

Hendrick Motorsports has dominated the mid-November race for the better part of this millennium, as Jimmie Johnson (three straight wins from 2007-2009) and Kyle Busch (2005 winner) have combined to win four of the last eight events. Kevin Harvick of Richard Childress Racing has won it twice since 2008, including last year’s event. Harvick can really do himself some good by winning the race again this year, as he is in third place in the Sprint Cup Standings with 2,302 points. Matt Kenseth of Joe Gibbs Racing is in second with 2,335 points and Jimmie Johnson currently sits atop the leaderboard with 2,342 points.
Johnson won last week’s AAA Texas 500 and avoided further conflict with Greg Biffle, who confronted him after a race at Martinsville, VA in late October. Biffle has since apologized for the outburst in which he grabbed Johnson by the collar and told him “you better watch it,” and the confrontation looks to be water under the bridge from this point forward. 

The Advocare 500 will start at 3 p.m. ET. The Ford Ecoboost 400 will be the final race of the Series and will take place on Sunday, Nov. 17.