After running the longest race of their season, the NASCAR Cup Series drivers and teams will turn their attention back to road racing this weekend. The action heads out to the west coast as Sonoma Raceway is set to host its first NASCAR race since 2019 this Sunday. Unlike the last two weeks, there will be no live practice or qualifying this week. As such, the performance metrics formula is once again responsible for generating the Toyota Save Mart 350 starting lineup.
This article contains all kinds of vital information to get you set for this weekend’s action at Sonoma Raceway. Read on for the Toyota Save Mart 350 starting lineup, start time, race facts and NASCAR stats.
NASCAR Cup Series at Sonoma Raceway
Toyota Save Mart 350
Date: Sunday, June 6, 2021
Start Time: 4 p.m. EST
Track: Sonoma Raceway — Sonoma County, CA
Pole Sitter: Kyle Larson
Defending Champion: Martin Truex Jr. (2019)
Toyota Save Mart 350 Race Details
Distance: 217.48 miles (350 kilometers)
Lap Length: 2.52 miles
Stages: Three (Laps 1-20; 21-40; 41-90)
Toyota Save Mart 350 Starting Lineup
See below for a breakdown of qualifying.
|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||Denny Hamlin||11||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|5||Kyle Busch||18||Joe Gibbs Racing||Ford|
|6||Austin Dillon||3||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet|
|7||Alex Bowman||48||Hendrick Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|8||Kevin Harvick||4||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|9||Brad Keselowski||2||Team Penske||Ford|
|10||Tyler Reddick||8||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet|
|11||Ryan Blaney||12||Team Penske||Ford|
|12||Chris Buescher||17||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford|
|13||Joey Logano||22||Team Penske||Ford|
|14||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||47||JTG Daugherty Racing||Chevrolet|
|15||Bubba Wallace||23||23XI Racing||Toyota|
|16||Daniel Suarez||99||Trackhouse Racing||Chevrolet|
|17||Matt DiBenedetto||21||Wood Brothers Racing||Ford|
|18||Erik Jones||43||Richard Petty Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|19||Martin Truex Jr.||19||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|20||Christopher Bell||20||Joe Gibbs Racing||Toyota|
|21||Michael McDowell||34||Front Row Motorsports||Ford|
|22||Corey LaJoie||7||Spire Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|23||Cole Custer||41||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|24||Ryan Newman||6||Roush Fenway Racing||Ford|
|25||Chase Briscoe||14||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|26||Aric Almirola||10||Stewart-Haas Racing||Ford|
|27||Ryan Preece||37||JTG Daugherty Racing||Chevrolet|
|28||Anthony Alfredo||38||Front Row Motorsports||Ford|
|29||Ross Chastain||42||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet|
|30||Kurt Busch||1||Chip Ganassi Racing||Chevrolet|
|31||Ben Rhodes||77||Spire Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|32||James Davison||15||Rick Ware Racing||Chevrolet|
|33||Quin Houff||00||StarCom Racing||Chevrolet|
|34||Garrett Smithley||53||Petty Ware Racing||Ford|
|35||Scott Heckert||78||Live Fast Motorsports||Ford|
|36||Josh Billicki||52||Rick Ware Racing||Ford|
|37||Cody Ware||51||Rick Ware Racing||Chevrolet|
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 were 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 weekend’s Toyota Save Mart 350 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 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
Toyota Save Mart 350 Race History and NASCAR Stats
- This race has utilized four different Sonoma Raceway layouts over the years. The first-ever running in 1989 was held on the full 2.52-mile course. It remained that way until 1998 when NASCAR switched to running on the 1.949-mile layout.
- In 2019, NASCAR made the decision to revert to the original 2.52-mile layout. This marked the first time in 22 years that the ‘Carousel’ section of Sonoma Raceway was included in the race.
- From 1989-2001, the course only had 34 pit stalls. Race teams were actually required to share pit boxes in the first dozen editions of the Toyota Save Mart 350!
- This race was not held last season due to virus-related restrictions in the state of California. NASCAR moved it to Charlotte as a result.
- Jeff Gordon tops the all-time driver wins list in this race with five career victories, good for two more than any other driver in history.
- Among active NASCAR Cup Series drivers, Martin Truex Jr. holds the most victories in this race with three. Truex has won each of the last two runnings in 2018 and 2019.
- Hendrick Motorsports leads all race teams with six prior wins in the Toyota Save Mart 350. Of course, five came courtesy of Gordon and the most recent HMS win came all the way back in 2010. Joe Gibbs Racing is just behind with five prior wins.
- Chevrolet holds an 11-8 advantage over Ford for the most wins in this race among NASCAR Cup Series manufacturers.
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