5 things to watch: Pure Michigan 400

Pauline Gross
August 13, 2017

Brad Keselowski will be on the pole for Sunday's NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway after he burned past the competition in qualifying Friday. It marked his first pole in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series at his hometown tack.

Keselowski is locked into the playoffs, but Logano isn't.

Keselowski was happy with is qualifying efforts, especially since it is his hometown track. "Michigan, for me, feels like a bigger event", Keselowski said. We are not in bad shape, but with so many drivers with victories, that puts us pretty much in a box where we have to win. It's a special track for me to have any kind of success at.

Brad Keselowski returns to MI still searching for his first win at his hometown track. It's a big deal for any driver, not just myself. This track just seems to suit him very well.

All 12 drivers in the final found posted a qualifying speed over 200.000 miles per hour. He's come close to winning this season, including an unlikely second place finish on the road course last week, and his MI track record is pretty good as well with three victories and fourteen top five finishes. He was the top qualifying rookie.

"That showed again in the spring when we were able to drive up to third with a auto that wasn't as good as a third-place vehicle (should be)". "We know that by points, it's going to be nearly impossible (to make the playoff). We all went to Ford Day (on Thursday), and I know the competitors had their day (during the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 unveiling) and their announcement yesterday". He won from the poll in June and picked up his first ever Cup Series win here last August from the 12th place starting position.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. grazed the wall in the opening moments of the session after two laps.

The speeds only got faster in the second round, but once again it was Blaney leading the way.

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Punches and objects were thrown, prompting Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe to declare the state of emergency . A silver Dodge Challenger smashed into another auto , then backed up, barreling through "a sea of people".

Bowyer has four top-five finishes in 2017, including back-to-back seconds to round out June.

Expect that trend to change Sunday when the Pure Michigan 400 gets underway at 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN. Are they excited for this weekend's Pure Michigan 400? Throw in the potential for lengthy green flag runs and suddenly fuel mileage becomes a factor as well, even with stage racing.

On Sunday, all the infield guests can stand on the backstretch to cheer on their favorite driver as they drive by just before the Pure Michigan 400.

START: Red Berenson, retired University of MI hockey team coach, will give the command to start engines at 3:07 p.m.

NATIONAL ANTHEM: The Anthem will be performed at 3:01 p.m. Race fans who purchase early will have the best prices and the best seats.

Kyle Larson (201.765 mph), victor of the previous two races at MIS, qualified in ninth place. It has been the love of NASCAR racing and the thrill of a great time for race fans and drivers alike for almost 50 years.

Nestled in the lush Irish Hills of Southeastern Michigan, Michigan International Speedway is NASCAR's fastest racetrack.

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