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NASCAR Nearing a Return to Racing in USA Today 301 Following Lengthy Rain Delay

USA Today 301 weather delay update NASCAR NASCAR Cup Series New Hampshire Motor Speedway

Photo Credit: Damin J. Sawyer,

UPDATE 2: Sunday, June 23 at 6:43 PM ET

On cue, the engines have been re-fired for the 35 cars that remain in the field in Sunday’s USA Today 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

Racing will resume any moment.

There are 82 laps remaining.

UPDATE 1: Sunday, June 23 at 6:36 PM ET

Drivers have been told to be inside their race cars by 6:40 PM ET, and teams are saying on their radios that NASCAR has told them the expected time for engines to be re-fired in today’s USA Today 301 will be 6:43 PM ET.

Tyler Reddick will be the leader of the race as teams will bolt wet-weather tires on for the restart of the race, and Ryan Blaney will restart from the second position.

Original Story: Sunday, June 23 at 6:30 PM ET

Weather brought Sunday’s USA Today 301 to an abrupt halt after the conclusion of Lap 219. And while the drivers and teams covered their cars and waited on pit road for the expected heavier rain to arrive at the 1.058-mile oval, the big rain did eventually arrive.

Here was the scene in the pit box of Tyler Reddick’s No. 45 23XI Racing team:

While it began to look less and less likely that we would return to racing, the rain finally did fade away, and the radar began to look very favorable. NASCAR and New Hampshire Motor Speedway began track drying efforts, and car covers came off of the cars at approximately 6:20 PM ET.

Track drying is being finished up, and the expectation is that NASCAR will return to racing in the very near future at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. NASCAR has declared that the race will be restarted in a wet-weather tire situation, which means teams will be required to make the change from slicks to wets.

Teams will not lose positions on pit road while making the change. When the track dries out, NASCAR will make the decision on when the teams will move back to slick tires.

The television coverage of the finish of the race will remain on USA Network.

With 82 laps remaining in the USA Today 301, Tyler Reddick is scored as the race leader, and he was set to pick up his second win of the year if the rain had forced the remainder of the race to be canceled. But it looks like the driver of the No. 45 machine will have to race out the final 82 laps.

Ryan Blaney, last weekend’s race winner at Iowa Speedway, will restart the race from second, while Denny Hamlin, Todd Gilliland, and Justin Haley will round out the top-five.

Michael McDowell, Kyle Larson, Austin Cindric, Christopher Bell, and Noah Gragson will make up the remainder of the top-10.

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