The NASCAR Cup Series stays out west this week for the Instacart 500 at Phoenix Raceway. The race marks the first of two that the 1-mile track will host this season. The second won’t be until the final race of the season when the series will crown its 2021 champion.
This article contains all of the vital information necessary to get you ready for the fourth race of the NASCAR Cup Series season. Read on for the Instacart 500 starting lineup, start time, fast facts and statistics.
NASCAR Cup Series at Phoenix Raceway
17th Instacart 500
Date: Sunday, Mar. 14, 2021
Start Time: 3:30 p.m. EST
Track: Phoenix Raceway — Avondale, AZ
Pole Sitter: Brad Keselowski
Defending Champion: Joey Logano
Instacart 500 Race Details
Distance: 312 miles (500 kilometers)
Lap Length: 1.022 miles (1.645 kilometers)
Stages: Three (Laps 1-75; Laps 76-190; Laps 191-312)
Instacart 500 Starting Grid
See below for a breakdown of qualifying.
|Starting Position||Driver||Car Number||Team||Manufacturer|
|1||Kyle Larson||5||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|2||Ryan Blaney||12||Team Penske||Ford|
|3||Brad Keselowski||2||Team Penske||Ford|
|4||Kyle Busch||18||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|5||Chase Elliott||9||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|6||Denny Hamlin||11||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|7||Martin Truex Jr.||19||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|8||Joey Logano||22||Team Penske||Ford|
|9||William Byron||24||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|10||Christopher Bell||20||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|11||Kevin Harvick||4||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|12||Tyler Reddick||8||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet|
|13||Kurt Busch||1||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet|
|14||Austin Dillon||3||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet|
|15||Matt DiBenedetto||21||Wood Brothers Racing||Ford|
|16||Daniel Suarez||99||Trackhouse Racing||Chevrolet|
|17||Erik Jones||43||Richard Petty Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|18||Michael McDowell||34||Front Row Motorsports||Ford|
|19||Chase Briscoe||14||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|20||Aric Almirola||10||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|21||Chris Buescher||17||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford|
|22||Cole Custer||41||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|23||Corey LaJoie||7||Spire Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|24||Ross Chastain||42||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet|
|25||Alex Bowman||48||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|26||B.J. McLeod||78||Live Fast Motorsports||Ford|
|27||Bubba Wallace||23||23XI Racing||Toyota|
|28||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||47||JTG Daugherty Racing||Chevrolet|
|29||Anthony Alfredo||38||Front Row Motorsports||Ford|
|30||Josh Bilicki||52||Rick Ware Racing||Chevrolet|
|31||Ryan Newman||6||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford|
|32||Ryan Preece||37||JTG Daugherty Racing||Chevrolet|
|33||Justin Haley||77||Spire Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|34||Ryan Ellis||15||Rick Ware Racing||Chevrolet|
|35||Quin Houff||00||StarCom Racing||Chevrolet|
|36||Cody Ware||51||Petty Ware Racing||Chevrolet|
|37||Chad Finchum||66||MBM Motorsports||Ford|
|38||David Starr||13||MBM Motorsports||Ford|
|39||Joey Gase||53||Rick Ware Racing||Chevrolet|
|40||Parker Kligerman||96||Gaunt Brothers Racing||Toyota|
NASCAR Cup Series Qualifying Overview
Following the virus-caused 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 were used to determine starting lineups. That same formula remains in place for the majority of races on the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season, including this weekend’s Instacart 500.
So, what exactly is involved in the performance-metrics formula? Well, it draws on a number of factors including individual race performances and seaosn-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
Instacart 500 Stats and NASCAR Betting Facts
- Joey Logano won the 2020 Instacart 500 with the slowest average speed of any winner in the history of the race (94.407 mph)
- Kevin Harvick leads all drivers with five career wins in the Instacart 500; four have come while driving for Stewart-Haas.
- Stewart-Haas Racing leads all teams with five wins in this race.
- Chevrolet leads all manufacturers with 10 wins with the last one coming in 2017.
- Kevin Harvick won the Instacart 500 in four out of the five years from 2014-18.
- Aside from Kevin Harvick, Ryan Newman is the only other active driver with multiple Instacart 500 wins (2010, 2017).
- The 2010 race was extended to 600 kilometers in a reaction by track officials to new NASCAR start time rules.
- Toyota drivers have won four of the last six races at Phoenix Raceway.