NASCAR Cup race at Dover: How to watch, starting lineup and predictions

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NASCAR’s Cup race at Dover International Speedway is Sunday at 2 p.m. on FS1. Martin Truex Jr. will start on the pole with Denny Hamlin in the front row for the Drydene 400.

Truex won last weekend’s race at Darlington in dominating fashion for his third victory of the season and is well-positioned for another win given his back-to-back second place finishes at Dover last year. Teams will utilize the low downforce, high horsepower package, which was also used at Phoenix, Martinsville and Darlington all tracks where Truex won races this season.

Truex has the best odds to win Sunday (+350) ahead of Kyle Larson (+450), Denny Hamlin (+500), Chase Elliott and Kevin Harvick (both +700), according to BetMGM. Hamlin and Harvick each won a race at the Monster Mile last year.

The race is likely to see the veterans up front, but there will be a new face in the field. Josh Berry, an Xfinity Series driver for JR Motorsports, will make his Cup Series debut this weekend for Spire Motorsports as a substitute for Justin Haley in the No. 77. Haley is missing this weekend’s events in accordance with NASCAR’s COVID-19 protocols, which were updated earlier this week regarding mask mandates.

Starting this weekend, NASCAR is no longer requiring that masks be worn outdoors in the infield competition footprint.

Charlotte Motor Speedway announced Friday that fans will not be required to wear masks at this year’s Coca-Cola 600 in late May in accordance with North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper’s updated executive order, and that the speedway is able to host fans at full capacity.

For the race at Dover, the Delaware Division of Public Health has approved up to 20,000 fans, or around 37 percent of the track’s grandstand capacity, and face masks are required for fans.

The Cup event is 400 miles (400 laps) on the oval with stages ending on Laps 120, 240 and 400.

Predictions for NASCAR at Dover

Dover will likely be another duel between Kyle Larson and Truex, and Larson seems primed to have the upper hand this weekend. In 12 races at the track, Larson has six top-five finishes (nine top-10s) and his latest win at Dover was his last race there in 2019. I predict that the No. 5 team did its homework after last weekend, made the necessary adjustments and is ready for another win on Sunday.

How to watch NASCAR race at Dover

Race: Drydene 400 Distance: 400 miles, 400 laps (stages end on Laps 120, 240 and 400. The track is one mile) When: Sunday 2 p.m. TV: FS1 Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Starting lineup for NASCAR at Dover

1

Martin Truex Jr.

19

2

Denny Hamlin

11

3

William Byron

24

4

Kyle Larson

5

5

Kevin Harvick

4

6

Kyle Busch

18

7

Ryan Blaney

12

8

Chase Elliott

9

9

Joey Logano

22

10

Chris Buescher

17

11

Christopher Bell

20

12

Tyler Reddick

8

13

Ryan Newman

6

14

Austin Dillon

3

15

Brad Keselowski

2

16

Alex Bowman

48

17

Chase Briscoe

14

18

Matt DiBenedetto

21

19

Ross Chastain

42

20

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

47

21

Michael McDowell

34

22

Bubba Wallace

23

23

Erik Jones

43

24

Daniel Suárez

99

25

Ryan Preece

37

26

Corey LaJoie

7

27

Anthony Alfredo

38

28

Kurt Busch

1

29

Josh Berry*

77

30

Cole Custer

41

31

BJ McLeod

78

32

Aric Almirola

10

33

James Davison

15

34

Cody Ware

51

35

Quin Houff

0

36

Garrett Smithley

53

37

Josh Bilicki

52