Entering the fifth week of the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series, No. 21 driver Matt DiBenedetto head into the Atlanta Motor Speedway weekend ninth in the points standings and hungry for more. The worn surface at Atlanta suits the No. 21 driver’s race style.
Atlanta’s aging track surface is a maintenance nightmare for track officials responsible for keeping it in racing condition, but a near dream come true for drivers like DiBenedetto, as the Cup teams head into Sunday’s Folds of Honor/Quik Trip 500.
“I compare it to Fontana,” DiBenedetto said.
“The surface is old, and that allows the cars to spread around more. It makes it more racey, more fun.”
Tire management becomes a big focal point this weekend, as the worn pavement affects tire life immensely.
“It’s more my style,” DiBenedetto said
“It’s a fun track. Hopefully we can qualify decent, race well and stay up front the whole time.”
Atlanta’s Resurfacing Future
Atlanta has already postponed the resurfacing of the race track for multiple years, but it is inevitable that at some point, the surface will have to be redone. The track has not been paved since its reconfiguration from an oval to the current quad oval in 1997. Most of the drivers will despise the brand new surface.
“New repaves are never fun,” DiBenedetto said. “It takes years to get the asphalt aged so that it races well.”
The No. 21 driver, in his first year with the team said the aging asphalt gives the Georgia track both character and makes for a multiple lane race surface.
“We all love it,” DiBenedetto said.
Season So Far
In the first four races of the 2020 season, the Wood Brothers No. 21 team has posted a best finish of second, at Las Vegas, and an overall average finish of 11.8 in the four races. So far, they have also have earned 17 Stage points, including four for a seventh-place finish in the 150-mile qualifying races at Daytona International Speedway.
Cup Race Weekend Schedule
Qualifying for the Folds of Honor/Quik Trip 500 is set for 12:05 p.m. on Saturday. The race is scheduled to start just after 2 p.m. on Sunday. TV coverage will be on FOX.