It’s fitting – in a mythical sense – that the track known as “The Last Great Colosseum” will host the first elimination race of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series playoffs, as drivers and teams battle for playoff survival during a nighttime spectacle and on an oval that helped make the “bump-and-run” famous.
Sixteen drivers will enter the “The Bullring” at Bristol Motor Speedway, but only 12 will depart with their championship aspirations intact. Following eventful races at Darlington Raceway and Kansas Speedway – where non-playoff drivers celebrated race wins in victory lane – no driver is yet assured of advancing to the second round.
Both the top and the bottom of the playoff standings entering Saturday night’s race feature surprises, and the drivers just above and below the bubble are clumped in a tight pack. Joe Gibbs Racing’s Christopher Bell sits atop the standings, 58 points above the cutoff line, while Stewart-Hass Racing's Kevin Harvick, in 16th, ranks 35 points below the 12th-place driver and faces a near must-win.
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Here is everything you need to know to get ready for the Bass Pro Shops Night Race, Saturday at Bristol Motor Speedway.
What time does the NASCAR Cup race at Bristol start?
The Bass Pro Shops Night Race starts at 7:30 p.m. ET in Bristol, Tennessee.
What TV channel is the Cup race at Bristol on?
USA Network is broadcasting the Bass Pro Shops Night Race and has a preview show beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET.
Will there be a live stream of the Cup race at Bristol?
The Bass Pro Shops Night Race can be live streamed on the NBC Sports website (for those with a cable/satellite provider) and on the NBC Sports app. The race can also be streamed on FuboTV as well as other options.
How many laps is the Cup race at Bristol?
The Bass Pro Shops Night Race is 500 laps around the 0.533-mile oval for a total of 266.5 miles. The race will feature three segments (laps per stage) — Stage 1: 125 laps, Stage 2: 125 laps, Stage 3: 250 laps.
What are the playoff standings entering the Cup race at Bristol?
(Through two races; top 12 after Saturday night's race advance to second round)
1. Christopher Bell, 2,108 points; 2. William Byron, 2,098; 3. Denny Hamlin, 2,097; 4. Joey Logano, 2,090; 5. Ryan Blaney, 2,086; 6. Alex Bowman, 2,080; 7. Chase Elliott, 2,078; 8. Kyle Larson, 2,077; 9. Ross Chastain, 2,076; 10. Daniel Suarez, 2,056; 11. Tyler Redick, 2,052; 12. Austin Cindric, 2,052; 13. Kyle Busch, 2,050; 14. Austin Dillon, 2,049; 15. Chase Briscoe, 2,043; 16. Kevin Harvick, 2,017.
Who won the most recent Night race at Bristol?
Kyle Larson dominated, leading 175 laps in last year's playoff race before edging Kevin Harvick by 0.227 seconds on Sept. 18, 2021 to clinch a berth in the second round.
What is the lineup for the Bass Pro Shops Night Race?
(Car number in parentheses)
1. (10) Aric Almirola, Ford
2. (14) Chase Briscoe, Ford
3. (48) Alex Bowman, Chevrolet
4. (11) Denny Hamlin, Toyota
5. (5) Kyle Larson, Chevrolet
6. (12) Ryan Blaney, Ford
7. (4) Kevin Harvick, Ford
8. (20) Christopher Bell, Toyota
9. (2) Austin Cindric, Ford
10. (6) Brad Keselowski, Ford
11. (41) Cole Custer, Ford
12. (1) Ross Chastain, Chevrolet
13. (16) AJ Allmendinger, Chevrolet
14. (45) Bubba Wallace, Toyota
15. (22) Joey Logano, Ford
16. (24) William Byron, Chevrolet
17. (8) Tyler Reddick, Chevrolet
18. (34) Michael McDowell, Ford
19. (31) Justin Haley, Chevrolet
20. (17) Chris Buescher, Ford
21. (18) Kyle Busch, Toyota
22. (19) Martin Truex Jr, Toyota
23. (9) Chase Elliott, Chevrolet
24. (43) Erik Jones, Chevrolet
25. (23) Ty Gibbs, Toyota
26. (47) Ricky Stenhouse Jr, Chevrolet
27. (21) Harrison Burton, Ford
28. (3) Austin Dillon, Chevrolet
29. (99) Daniel Suárez, Chevrolet
30. (38) Todd Gilliland, Ford
31. (7) Corey Lajoie, Chevrolet
32. (51) Cody Ware, Ford
33. (78) BJ McLeod, Ford
34. (42) Ty Dillon, Chevrolet
35. (77) Landon Cassill, Chevrolet
36. (15) JJ Yeley, Ford
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: NASCAR race Sept. 17: Start time, live stream, TV lineup for Bristol