Gen-6 debuts at Vegas after testing

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Larry McReynolds

Larry McReynolds has more than 30 years of NASCAR experience as a mechanic, Daytona 500-winning crew chief and broadcaster. He earned 23 Sprint Cup wins as a crew chief, including two victories in the prestigious Daytona 500, as well as a pair of non-points victories in the annual all-star race. Follow him on Twitter.


There are a lot of NASCAR storylines to watch going into Las Vegas this weekend.


NASCAR on FOX brings live coverage of the Sprint Cup race at Dover International Speedway on Sunday. The green flag drops at 1 p.m. ET, with coverage on FOX beginning at 12:30 p.m. ET.

This obviously will be the fastest non-restrictor plate track we have been to this season with the new car. It will be a track that doesn’t have a lot of grip. When you combine that with all the downforce these cars are creating plus add in the new-generation tire that the folks from Goodyear are putting out there right now, to me that sets the stage for a really good test for the new car.

One of the storylines we will be following is whether drivers like Jimmie Johnson, Brad Keselowski and Dale Earnhardt Jr. keep their two-race momentum going. Las Vegas was the last place Carl Edwards won, 70 races prior to his win last Sunday at Phoenix. So I am curious to see if he can keep his momentum going.

Granted, we are only a couple races into the season, but it’s not too early to look farther back in the field at a couple of drivers who are already somewhat in a hole. Most notably at the top of the list is Kyle Busch. He and his team had issues at Daytona and then anything that could possibly happen to them last weekend at Phoenix actually did.

Kyle obviously also has to be wondering what in the world he has to do to change his luck. Kasey Kahne, on the other hand, just seemed to lose the handle of the car at Phoenix. On the upside, both drivers roll into Las Vegas with a sense of confidence because they both know they should run well there.

Kasey looked to be strong early on, but it seemed like the Phoenix track went through a huge transition. Don’t get me wrong, Kasey wasn’t the only one who ran strong early but then faded. In addition to Kasey, there was Greg Biffle, Kevin Harvick and also our polesitter Mark Martin.

All these drivers will be looking to change things around at Las Vegas this weekend. Of course, every team will be able to benefit from Thursday's open test. Trust me, there is going to be a lot of data accumulated during this test.

The key is who can best translate, adapt and apply it come Sunday.

Tagged: Kasey Kahne

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