NASCAR is in New Hampshire this weekend for the Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. And when it comes to winners of the "Magic Mile" race, 11 of the last 12 winners of the New Hampshire event are Cup Series champions, except Denny Hamlin who won in 2007. The Foxwoods Casino 301 will start on Sunday at 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN.
One of the biggest storylines heading into the race is Kurt Busch finding the fountain of youth. Last week, winning the Quaker State 400 in Atlanta. He has won at New Hampshire three times in his career, but those wins came in 2008 or earlier. Recently, Busch has had his fits in New Hampshire, placing 17th or worse in three of the last four races.
Hocus Pocus let there be focus on NBCSN today at 3 p.m. ETJuly 18, 2021
Another interesting storyline involves Denny Hamlin. He has the points lead in the NASCAR Cup Series, so the playoffs are likely in his future. However, one of the most surprising stats for the 2021 season is Hamlin has yet to win a race. Racing legend Jeff Gordon weighed on Hamlin's performance earlier this year.
"Very strong driver. Very strong team. Very consistent. But they're missing opportunities, and this is not just this season," Gordon said during Fox's NASCAR RaceDay show before the race at Kansas. via Sportscasting. "They've missed a few of them. He's led a lot of laps. He's been in position to win. Whether it's an incident on pit road or something else, he just hasn't been able to close that deal. I go back to last year. He didn't close it winning the championship either. He won a lot of races, got himself to that final four at Phoenix. I thought he was the guy to beat, and he couldn't close it then. He's going to have to start closing the deal here real soon."
Whoever comes out on top Sunday knows that they won a very challenging race tack. "New Hampshire has been a really hit-or-miss place for us. It's just a different track," Chase Elliott said. "It takes a differing driving style, I feel like, than some of the other places. I look at Loudon as being more of its own animal. We've had a couple solid runs here, but never a dominating performance. I don't feel like personally it has been my best place."