Auto Racing Glance

A look at the upcoming week on the major auto racing circuits.

NASCAR CUP SERIES: GO BOWLING AT THE GLEN (90 laps, 220.5 miles around an 11-turn, 2.45-mile permanent road course), Watkins Glen International; Watkins Glen, N.Y.

TV: Sunday, 3 p.m. ET (Green flag approx. 3:18 p.m. ET) — NBCSN (Radio: Motor Racing Network, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90).

THIS WEEK: The series is back in Watkins Glen, N.Y., for the 23rd of 36 races this season after having to skip the track last year due to the pandemic. … This will be the 38th series race at the track and Chase Elliott has won the past two. … The track flows with the natural hilly terrain that holds it and there are a few good spots for cars to make a pass. … Denny Hamlin, still winless this season, leads the standings with 874 points, followed by *Kyle Larson (861), *William Byron (749), *Kyle Busch (740), *Elliott (736), *Joey Logano (733), *Martin Truex Jr. (696), *Ryan Blaney (689), *Brad Keselowski (676), Kevin Harvick (673), *Alex Bowman (637), Tyler Reddick (596), *Kurt Busch (552), *Christopher Bell (532), *Michael McDowell (448) and Almirola (377). The top 16 in points, and race wins, get into the playoffs. Eight drivers are ahead of Almirola on points, but out of the playoffs because they don’t have a win. Next on the winless hit list is Harvick, Almirola’s teammate.

BEST BETS: Chase Elliott has won the past two races at The Glen and is the heavy favorite at 2/1. Kyle Larson, also a road-course master, is at 9/2, with Martin Truex Jr. the last driver at better than 10/1, coming in 6/1. Daniel Suarez is also good on road courses, and at 80/1 is the best looking long shot.

*Denotes race winner and playoff berth. Standings per NASCAR.com.

NASCAR XFINITY SERIES: SKREWBALL PEANUT BUTTER WHISKEY 200 (82 laps, 200.9 miles around an 11-turn, 2.45-mile permanent road course), Watkins Glen International; Watkins Glen, N.Y.

TV: Saturday, 4:00 p.m. ET (Green flag approx. 4:18 p.m. ET) — CNBC (Radio: Motor Racing Network, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90).

THIS WEEK: The series is also back for the 27th time at Watkins Glen, with Austin Cindric winning the last race in 2019. … This will be the 20th of 33 races on the season, with seven to go before the playoffs start. … *Cindric (797 points) leads the standings, followed by *AJ Allmendinger (715), Daniel Hemric (684), *Justin Allgaier (653), Harrison Burton (615), *Jeb Burton (589), Justin Haley (577), Noah Gragson (544), Brandon Jones (489), Jeremy Clements (468), *Myatt Snider (426) and Riley Herbst (418) making up the 12 drivers who would currently make the playoffs.

*Denotes race winner and playoff berth. Standings per NASCAR.com.

NASCAR GANDER OUTDOORS TRUCK SERIES: UNITED RENTALS 176 AT THE GLEN (72 laps, 176.4 miles around an 11-turn, 2.45-mile permanent road course), Watkins Glen International; Watkins Glen, N.Y.

TV: Saturday, 12:30 p.m. ET (Green flag approx. 12:48 p.m. ET) — FS1 (Radio: Motor Racing Network, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90).

THIS WEEK: The Trucks are also back on the track this week and will run for just the sixth time at Watkins Glen, the first since 2000. … This will be the 15th of 22 events this season and serves as the cutoff to make the playoffs, so it’s win and you’re in for a slew of drivers not currently qualified for the run for the championship. … *John Hunter Nemechek leads the standings (605), followed by *Ben Rhodes (520), *Austin Hill (510), *Todd Gilliland (458), Zane Smith (451), Matt Crafton (430), *Sheldon Creed (413), Carson Hocevar (372), Stewart Friesen (364) and Chandler Smith (351) make up the 10 drivers currently in the seven-race playoffs.

*Denotes race winner and playoff berth. Standings per NASCAR.com.

NTT DATA INDYCAR SERIES: BIG MACHINE MUSIC CITY GRAND PRIX (80 laps, 173.6 miles around a 2.17-mile, 11-turn temporary street course), Streets of Nashville; Nashville, Tenn.

TV: Sunday, 5:30 p.m. ET (approx. green flag 5:40 p.m. ET) — NBCSN (Radio: Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network, Sirius 214, XM 209, IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and on the INDYCAR Mobile app).

THIS WEEK: The series is back for the Music City Grand Prix in Nashville, Tenn., the 11th of 16 races on the season and the first in Music City. … This one will be unique, with the track coursing twice over the Korean War Veterans Memorial Bridge and the Cumberland River, a major body of water. … Spain’s Alex Palou has the points lead (384) in his Honda-powered Dallara, followed by Mexico’s Pato O’Ward (345) in a Chevrolet-powered Dallara, while New Zealander Scott Dixon (328) is in third in his Honda, Newgarden (321) in a Chevy is in fourth and Sweden’s Marcus Ericsson in a Honda (255) rounds out the top five.

Standings per INDYCAR.com.

FORMULA ONE

THIS WEEK: The series takes its usual long summer break, not coming back to the track until the Belgian Grand Prix on Aug. 29. … The race in Hungary on Sunday was a stunner, with France’s Esteban Ocon winning for the upstart Alpine team in a Renault. It was the second podium finish for him in 78 career races in F1. … Great Britain’s Lewis Hamilton (195 points) retook the series lead in a Mercedes, with Belgium’s Max Verstappen (187) falling back to second in his Red Bull, followed by Britain’s Lando Norris (113) in a McLaren Mercedes, Finland’s Valtteri Bottas (108) in a Mercedes with Mexico’s Sergio Perez (104) in a Red Bull rounding out the top five.

Standings per F1.com.

NATIONAL HOT ROD ASSOCIATION

THIS WEEK: The delayed NHRA Winternationals in Pomona didn’t disappoint, with Leah Pruett winning in Top Fuel, Ron Capps in Funny Car, Aaron Stanfield in Pro Stock and Matt Smith in Pro Stock Motorcycle. … The series will take a week off before hitting the strip for six straight weeks starting next week at Topeka, Kan. … Steve Torrence leads the Top Fuel standings (1,014 points) and has clinched a playoff berth, followed by Antron Brown (701) and Brittany Force (625). … Capps took over the lead in Funny Car (734), followed by Bob Tasca III (729) and John Force (698). … Greg Anderson leads Pro Stock (835), with Stanfield (709) and Erica Enders (648) behind him. … Smith (813) leads the Motorcycles, with Steve Johnson (551) and Scotty Pollacheck (491) giving chase.

Standings per NHRA.com.