Will This Unexpected NASCAR Streak Continue at Martinsville?

The NASCAR Cup Series season is back in action after a week off for Easter. The Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500 will continue on Sunday afternoon as another driver strives to secure a spot in the playoffs, which fans can watch with a fuboTV trial. If a new winner emerges, his victory will mark the continuation of a rare trend.

There have been seven drivers that have reached Victory Lane through the first seven races of the season. The last time this happened was 2014, not too many years ago. However, the last time eight different drivers won the first eight races of the season was in 2003. There were actually nine different drivers that won the first nine races. According to Beyond the Flag, the all-time record is 10 different winners through the first 10 races of a season, which occurred in 2000.

The season started with Michael McDowell taking the checkered flag in a crash-filled Daytona 500, the first victory of his 14-year Cup career. Christopher Bell then captured the first Cup win of his career the following week at the Daytona Road Course. The season continued with William Byron (Homestead-Miami), Kyle Larson (Las Vegas), Martin Truex Jr. (Phoenix), Ryan Blaney (Atlanta), and Joey Logano (Bristol dirt) all securing wins of their own.

While the 2021 season has featured two drivers getting the first wins of their Cup careers, it has also resulted in several going winless. Chase Elliott, the 2020 champion, finished second in the Daytona 500 and has since only posted one other top-five finish. He remains winless, but he is not the only top driver struggling.

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Similarly, Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski, and Denny Hamlin combined for 20 wins during the 2020 season. Both Hamlin and Keselowski reached the championship race at Phoenix, while Harvick missed the cutoff line at Martinsville. All three have been unable to reach Victory Lane through the first seven races of the 2021 season.

Following a postponement due to rain, the Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500 will continue on Sunday afternoon. The engines will fire at 4 p.m. ET, and the green flag will wave at 4:03 p.m. Mike Joy, Jeff Gordon, and Clint Bowyer will call the action from the booth, while MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will provide audio coverage.

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