NASCAR Makes Major Schedule Changes Due to Martinsville Rain

Friday night, the Xfinity Series drivers headed onto Martinsville Speedway for the Cook Out 250. The race took place later than expected due to rain, which only served as an omen of things to come. NASCAR officially chose to postpone the race after only 91 of the 250 laps.

JR Motorsports driver Noah Gragson won Stage 1 after the first delay. However, rain showers brought the second stage to a halt near its halfway point. The race stopped at 9:32 p.m. ET, but the track-drying efforts continued. NASCAR ultimately postponed the rest of the race until Sunday due to the storms intensifying. The race will now tentatively start at noon.

The new race will air on FS1 with Adam Alexander serving as the play-by-play man. Cup Series drivers Austin Dillon and Ryan Blaney will join him in the booth while working as color commentators. Blaney previously joined Alexander in the booth for the Atlanta race while working alongside fellow driver Tyler Reddick.

The race at the short track is the seventh in the Xfinity Series schedule, and it marks the start of the Dash 4 Cash program. Justin Allgaier, AJ Allmendinger, Harrison Burton, and Gragson are the four drivers that are eligible to win the $100,000 bonus. These four drivers will compete to have the best finish while also racing for the checkered flag. Gragson won one of the four $100,000 bonuses in 2020 with a runner-up finish at Atlanta. Allmendinger won a bonus of his own with a fourth-place finish at Homestead-Miami.

While racing fans wait to watch the rest of the Cook Out 250, they continue to express concern about Saturday night's Cup Series race. The Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500 is set for 7:30 p.m. ET, with the green flag waving at 8 p.m. However, the forecast calls for temperatures in the 60s. There is a 70-90% chance of rain at the time of the race, which could cause several delays. Fox Sports' Bob Pockrass guessed Saturday morning that the latest the race could start would be 9:30-10 p.m. ET due to an estimated race time of 3.5 hours.