Darlington Raceway. Illustration courtesy of NASCAR.
As the Nationwide series gets to racing the Royal Purple 200 today at Darlington Raceway in South Carolina, the Cup cars and drivers are gearing up for their Saturday run around the 1.25-mile oval in the Showtime Southern 500.
The egg-shaped oval will be, as always, a challenge for drivers and teams as they struggle to get the right setup for the surface, balancing pace against tire life and the dangers of the wall, especially in the narrow turns 1 and 2. A 43-car field will start the race, though as the night progresses and surface temperatures drop, there's every likelihood that the field will be reduced. Tire wear isn't anticipated to be a major factor at Darlington, thanks to the 2008 resurfacing of the track.
Check out the video below from Fox Sports featuring Jeff Gordon, Brian Vickers, Tony Stewart, and Kevin Harvick as they look forward to the race weekend and offer their insights to challenges ahead.
You can tune into the race on Fox at 7:30 p.m. Eastern.