Sunday's Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 500 playoff race came to an early halt after the Cup Series drivers completed only 52 laps. NASCAR postponed the race due to inclement weather and a slick track but could not complete the event at Texas Motor Speedway on Monday as planned. The sanctioning body has now postponed the race once again.
NASCAR confirmed the news on Monday afternoon and said that the race would resume on Tuesday. The current plan is for the drivers to fire up the engines and begin their pace laps shortly after noon ET. The fleet of Air Titans and additional dryers initially headed onto the track multiple times on Monday to prep the surface and avoided the postponement. There was a brief glimmer of hope for the crews and drivers alike. However, the weather created issues again and ultimately forced the postponement.
The race will resume Tuesday, October 27 at 12 PM ET/9 AM PT on NBCSN. pic.twitter.com/H8CxcfuJfG— NASCAR (@NASCAR) October 26, 2020
"Won’t be racing tomorrow either just as much precipitation expected tomorrow to. Way to let the trucks go first....stop doing double header Sunday’s and get the race in!" one person commented on social media. Many others added their feedback about the news, making mostly negative statements about NASCAR, the weather and the planning that went into the playoff race.
While the rain delay irritated fans and caused restlessness among the teams, a few drivers took advantage of the downtime. Austin Dillon, the No. 3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Camaro driver, used the opportunity to get some tasty food. He ordered tacos from Taco Casa and celebrated Taco Tuesday during a Monday rain delay.
At the time of the postponement, Clint Bowyer held the lead in the No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Mustang. Jimmie Johnson, Erik Jones, Joey Logano and Martin Truex Jr. rounded out the top five. If the race resumes as planned on Tuesday, the drivers will begin with lap 52 and race toward the end of Stage 1 (lap 105). Stage 2 will end at lap 210 and then the remaining 124 laps will lead to the end of the playoff race.
The Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 500 is only one of two remaining races before the final cut drops the field to four drivers. Joey Logano has secured his spot in Phoenix's championship race with a win, but the seven other drivers are currently fighting for the final three spots. Harvick, Hamlin and Brad Keselowski currently sit above the cutoff line, but none are safe due to the limited number of points.