NASCAR CUP SERIES: GEICO 500 (188 laps, 500.08 miles around a 2.66-mile D-shaped oval), Talladega Superspeedway; Talladega, Ala.
TV: Sunday, 2 p.m. ET (Green flag approx. 2:20 p.m. ET) -- FOX (Radio: Motor Racing Network, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90).
THIS WEEK: Alex Bowman put the No. 48 back in Victory Lane with a stunning win at Richmond on Sunday, the third of his four-season career. ... Now it's on to Talladega, where Bowman has as good a shot as anyone at a track that rewards the patient, and lucky. ... This will be the 104th series race at the track, with Ryan Blaney and Denny Hamlin winning here last year. This will be the 10th of 36 races of the season. ... Hamlin leads the standings with 434 points, followed by *Martin Truex Jr. (353), *Joey Logano (352), *William Byron (310), *Ryan Blaney (304), *Kyle Larson (299), Chase Elliott (285), Kevin Harvick (273), Brad Keselowski (269), *Christopher Bell (257), Kyle Busch (245), Austin Dillon (239), *Bowman (236), Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (222), Kurt Busch (214) and Chris Buescher (204) making up the top 16 in points, but Buescher would be dropped from the 16-driver playoffs based on 17th-place *Michael McDowell (199) winning earlier this season.
BEST BETS: Denny Hamlin at 13/2 is the favorite, with Joey Logano at 9/1. Ryan Blaney is alone at 10/1, with Chase Elliott and Brad Keselowski at 11/1. Austin Dillon is a good play at 33/1, and why not Michael McDowell at 66/1 after his season-opening win in the Daytona 500?
NASCAR XFINITY SERIES: AG-PRO 300 (113 laps, 300.58 miles around a 2.66-mile D-shaped oval), Talladega Superspeedway; Talladega, Ala.
TV: Saturday, 4 p.m. ET (Green flag approx. 4:20 p.m. ET) -- FOX (Radio: Motor Racing Network, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90).
THIS WEEK: The series heads to Talladega after a week off, and you have to like Justin Haley's chances, given that he swept the two series races there last season. ... This will be the 31st series race at the track and is the eighth of 33 events this season. ... Josh Berry won his first career race two weeks ago at Martinsville and Noah Gragson finished second to grab the top prize in the Dash 4 Cash race against his fellow qualifiers Justin Allgaier, AJ Allmendinger and Harrison Burton. That added $100,000 to Gragson's haul for the day. ... Talladega is the second Dash 4 Cash, followed by Darlington on May 8, with the Dash 4 Cash portion of the season concluding May 15 at Dover. ... Berry made the Dash 4 Cash this round with his Martinsville win, along with Noah Gragson, Daniel Hemric and Brandon Jones by virtue of their finishes. ... *Austin Cindric (317) leads the standings, followed by Hemric (275), Harrison Burton (242), Justin Haley (230), Jeb Burton (221), *AJ Allmendinger (218), *Myatt Snider (206), *Justin Allgaier (199), Jeremy Clements (198) and Jones (187) making up the top 10. The playoffs begin with 12 drivers, with *Berry and *Ty Gibbs in because of wins despite being outside the top 12 currently.
NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES
THIS WEEK: John Hunter Nemechek won for the second time this season over the weekend at Richmond, leading 114 of the 250 laps after starting 18th. ... The series now takes a week off before returning at Kansas on May 1 for the seventh of 22 races on the season. ... *Nemechek leads the Truck standings (270), followed by *Ben Rhodes (250), Sheldon Creed (216), Austin Hill (196), Matt Crafton (190), Stewart Friesen (183), Grant Enfinger (179), Zane Smith (165), Todd Gilliland (164) and Johnny Sauter (141). Ten drivers will make the seven-race playoffs.
NTT INDYCAR SERIES: FIRESTONE GRAND PRIX OF ST. PETERSBURG (110 laps, 198 miles around a 14-turn temporary street course), St. Petersburg, Florida.
THIS WEEK: Alex Palou of Spain won a thrilling season opener Sunday in Alabama in his Honda-powered Dallara, finishing just ahead of Australia's Will Power in his Chevrolet-powered machine by less than four-tenths of a second, but the series doesn't skip a beat by heading to Florida this weekend. ... The St. Petersburg race fell victim to the COVID-19 pandemic last season when it was set to be the season opener. This is the 16th race at St. Petersburg, with Josef Newgarden winning two years ago on his way to his second IndyCar title. ... This will be the second race in a 17-event season. ... Palou leads the standings (53 points), followed by Power (41), New Zealand's Scott Dixon (35-Honda), Mexico's Pato O'Ward (34-Chevrolet) and France's Sebastien Bourdais (31-Chevrolet) rounding out the top five.
THIS WEEK: Belgium's Max Verstappen won Sunday at Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Rome, dominating the race ahead of defending champion Lewis Hamilton by 22 seconds. Lando Norris finish third. ... Next up is the Portuguese Grand Prix on May 2, which will be the third of 24 scheduled races on the season. ... Great Britain's Hamilton leads the standings in his McLaren with 43 points, ahead on a tiebreaker over Verstappen (43) in his Red Bull, with Britain's Lando Norris (27) in a McLaren in third, Monaco's Charles Leclerc (20) in a Ferrari fourth and Finland's Valtteri Bottas (16) in a Mercedes (16) fifth.
NATIONAL HOT ROD ASSOCIATION
THIS WEEK: The series takes a week off after going four-wide at Las Vegas over the weekend. Next up is the Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway from April 30-May 2. ... Winners at Las Vegas were Steve Torrence in Top Fuel, Bob Tasca III in Funny Car, Erica Enders in Pro Stock and Ryan Oehler in Pro Stock Motorcycle. ... Torrence leads the Top Fuel standings (184 points), followed by Shawn Langdon (149), with Antron Brown (145) in third. ... Tasca leads Funny Car (187), with J.R. Todd (168) and Robert Hight (152) his nearest pursuers. ... Greg Anderson leads Pro Stock (188), with Enders (155) and Deric Kramer (150) behind him. ... Oehler leads the Motorcycles (209), with Matt Smith (183) and Steve Johnson (52) giving chase.
--By K. Lee Davis, Field Level Media