Should the Sprint Cup Series go to Atlanta twice in a season?
What a great race we had Sunday night at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Actually, I hate the fact that we only go there once a year, but I understand why. Unfortunately, it got to the point where the fans weren't supporting two trips a year there.
Atlanta Motor Speedway last hosted two annual Sprint Cup Series weekends in 2010.
Jerry Markland / Getty Images North America
By Larry McReynolds
What a great race we had Sunday night at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Actually, I hate the fact that we only go there once a year, but I understand why. Unfortunately, it got to the point where the fans weren't supporting two trips a year there. I'm also very excited we got their race back and they will be in our NASCAR on FOX portion of the season beginning next year. I'm not sure what's the method to the madness of having us go there in early March, but here's hoping Mother Nature smiles on all of us then.
Sunday's race gave us pretty much what we are used to seeing when we race there. It's really not that unusual for a driver and team to hit on the perfect setup that makes everyone else's life miserable at Atlanta Motor Speedway. I think we saw that from Kevin Harvick in both the Nationwide and the NASCAR Sprint Cup series event. I think Kevin led some crazy number like 350 laps combined in both races. At the same time, however, Kevin did dominate and win the Nationwide race, while dominating and not winning the Sprint Cup event.
We saw a lot of other teams Sunday night that showed some muscle. The Joe Gibbs Racing cars of Matt Kenseth and Denny Hamlin looked good. Of course, when it mattered the most and he maximized what he had, Kasey Kahne came to the top to not only win the race, but also secure a spot in the 2014 NASCAR Chase.
We saw pit road play a role in the outcome of the race. Kevin Harvick's guys have to be scratching their heads because they were having a real solid night on pit road, but the reality is Kevin Harvick came to pit road six times leading the race, but left pit road not leading the race. It just seemed that No. 11 car with its pit crew was a little bit better all night long.
Regardless of what I do for a living, I am a race fan first and always. The race Sunday night at Atlanta Motor Speedway gave me everything I was hoping for as a race fan. I sort of felt like for a 500-mile race it should have started earlier in the evening. Throwing the green flag at 7:50 p.m. ET was just a bit late in my book, but all in all it was a great race and it definitely wets my appetite that we get to broadcast this race next year with our NASCAR on FOX team.
VIDEO: Recapping Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Atlanta