After two weeks off for some much-needed R&R, the NASCAR Cup Series returns to the track this weekend. For the first time since 2019, the premier stock car racing series heads to Watkins Glen International in Upstate New York. Sunday afternoon’s Go Bowling at The Glen marks the 23rd race of the 2021 season and the fifth on a road course. Chase Elliott will be looking to make it three straight victories in the Finger Lakes and further establish his dominance on the road courses. However, there are plenty of drivers throughout the Go Bowling at The Glen starting lineup who figure to have a say in the matter before it’s all said and done.
The following article contains all kinds of vital information to get you set for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series action. Read on for the complete Go Bowling at The Glen starting lineup, start time, race facts and NASCAR stats.
NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen International
38th Go Bowling at The Glen
Date: Sunday, August 8, 2021
Start Time: 3 p.m. EST
Track: Watkins Glen International — Watkins Glen, NY
Pole Sitter: Brad Keselowski
Defending Champion: Chase Elliott (2019)
Go Bowling at The Glen Race Details
Distance: 220.86 miles (355 kilometers)
Lap Length: 2.454 miles
Stages: Three (Laps 1-20; 21-40; 41-90)
Go Bowling at The Glen Starting Lineup
See below for a breakdown of the qualifying metrics formula.
|Starting Position||Driver||Car Number||Team||Manufacturer|
|1||Kyle Larson||5||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|2||Chase Elliott||9||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|3||William Byron||24||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|4||Ryan Blaney||12||Team Penske||Ford|
|5||Kurt Busch||1||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet|
|6||Denny Hamlin||11||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|7||Cole Custer||41||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|8||Christopher Bell||20||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|9||Kevin Harvick||4||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|10||Joey Logano||22||Team Penske||Ford|
|11||Brad Keselowski||2||Team Penske||Ford|
|12||Martin Truex Jr.||19||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|13||Kyle Busch||18||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|14||Matt DiBenedetto||21||Wood Brothers Racing||Ford|
|15||Alex Bowman||48||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|16||Ross Chastain||42||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet|
|17||Daniel Suarez||99||Trackhouse Racing||Chevrolet|
|18||Aric Almirola||10||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|19||Ryan Newman||6||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford|
|20||Tyler Reddick||8||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet|
|21||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||47||JTG Daugherty Racing||Chevrolet|
|22||Chase Briscoe||14||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|23||Austin Dillon||3||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet|
|24||Corey LaJoie||7||Spire Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|25||Bubba Wallace||23||23XI Racing||Toyota|
|26||Chris Buescher||17||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford|
|27||Erik Jones||43||Richard Petty Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|28||Michael McDowell||34||Front Row Motorsports||Ford|
|29||Justin Haley||77||Spire Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|30||Anthony Alfredo||38||Front Row Motorsports||Ford|
|31||Ryan Preece||37||JTG Daugherty Racing||Chevrolet|
|32||B.J. McLeod||78||Live Fast Motorsports||Ford|
|33||Cody Ware||51||Petty Ware Racing||Chevrolet|
|34||Joey Gase||53||Rick Ware Racing||Chevrolet|
|35||Quin Houff||00||StarCom Racing||Chevrolet|
|36||David Starr||13||MBM Motorsports||Toyota|
|37||Josh Bilicki||52||Rick Ware Racing||Chevrolet|
|38||Garrett Smithley||15||Rick Ware Racing||Chevrolet|
|39||Timmy Hill||66||MBM Motorsports||Toyota|
NASCAR Cup Series Qualifying Overview
Following the interruption to racing last season, NASCAR did away with practice and qualifying runs at the majority of races. A combination of grouped draws and a performance-metrics formula was used to determine starting grids. That same formula remains in place for the majority of races on the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season, including this Sunday’s Go Bowling at The Glen starting lineup.
So, what exactly is involved in the performance-metrics formula? Well, it draws on a number of factors including individual race performances and season-long results. The following breakdown illustrates the weighted grades associated with each component of NASCAR’s metrics formula:
NASCAR Cup Series Metrics Formula Breakdown
- 35 percent: Team owner points ranking
- 25 percent: Driver’s finishing position from the previous race
- 25 percent: Car owner’s finishing position from the previous race
- 15 percent: Fastest lap from the previous race
Go Bowling at The Glen Race History and NASCAR Stats
- Although the first NASCAR Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International came in 1957 and was succeeded by races in both 1964 and ’65, it wasn’t until 1986 that the track became a fixture on the annual schedule.
- Although it has never held two NASCAR weekends in the same season, Watkins Glen has hosted the Cup Series every year since 1986 with the exception of the relocated 2020 race.
- NASCAR runs the “short course” at Watkins Glen which leaves out the “Boot” portion of the circuit.
- Oddly enough, two drivers have won the Go Bowling at The Glen in three consecutive seasons. Mark Martin parked it in victory lane from 1993-95. Jeff Gordon replicated the three-peat feat from 1997-99.
- Tony Stewart tops the all-time wins list among drivers at Watkins Glen International. His five race wins are followed by Jeff Gordon’s four.
- Only two current NASCAR Cup Series drivers have won the Go Bowling at The Glen multiple times. Kyle Busch took home the trophy in 2008 and 2013. Meanwhile, Chase Elliott is a two-time defending champion, having won in both 2018 and ’19.
- Among race teams, Hendrick Motorsports tops the list with eight victories in this race. Joe Gibbs Racing sits just behind with seven.
- Chevrolet holds a sizable lead among car manufcaturers with 19 total victories in this race, including each of the last two. Ford is a distant second with eight. Meanwhile, three of the four Toyota wins have come in the last seven races.
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