NASCAR Playoffs at Kansas preview: Standings, TV schedule, live stream, previous results – CBSSports.com

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads back to Kansas Speedway for the final playoff race in the Round of 12. When the checkered flag flies on Sunday, four drivers will be eliminated from championship contention.

As it stands, two former champions — Matt Kenseth (2003) and Kyle Busch (2015) — are below the cutline. Kenseth began the round in 11th and has since moved up to 10th while Busch has dropped from second to ninth. Not many expected Busch to be in this position after winning two races in the Round of 16, however he has yet to finish higher than 27th in the Round of 12.

Fortunately for Busch, Kansas is a track where he’s had some success. In 19 starts, Busch has one win and has finished in the top five in his last five races. As for Kenseth, he’s also been strong in the Jayhawk State. In 23 starts, Kenseth has two wins, seven top fives and 13 top 10s.

Another surprise just above the cutline in eighth is seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson. Despite winning three races early on in the season, the 42-year-old has not been to Victory Lane since June, when he took the checkered flag at Dover. That being said, Johnson is no slouch at Kansas. The No. 48 driver is tied with former Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jeff Gordon for the wins record with three at the track. Johnson also has nine top fives and 17 top 10s.

On the other end of the spectrum is Martin Truex Jr., who punched his ticket to the Round of 8 after winning his sixth race of the year at Charlotte. One of those six wins did indeed come at Kansas back in May when he led 104 laps. On Sunday Truex will attempt to become the second driver to sweep a track this season. Only Kyle Larson has accomplished the feat at Michigan this year.

We will also be keeping an eye on 23-year-old Ryan Blaney this weekend. Blaney finished fourth at the race in May after winning the pole. After dominating a portion of the Talladega race last week, Blaney inevitably suffered the same fate as 10 of the other playoff drivers, crashing out in the final laps.

“We ran really great there at Kansas in the spring race earlier.” Blaney said in an interview with CBS Sports. “I think if we can have a day like that again we’ll have a good shot at advancing. I think no mistakes and just going to do the best that our team can like I know we can do week in and week out. I hope that we can have a good run but you never know what can happen.”

Please feel free to listen to our interview with Ryan Blaney via the Soundcloud player below

How to watch the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Hollywood Casino 400

Location: Kansas Speedway
Date: Sunday, October 22
Time: 3 p.m. ET
Length: 267 laps/400.5 miles
Stage 1: Ends on lap 80
Stage 2: Ends on lap 160
Final stage: Scheduled for lap 267
TV: NBCSN
Live stream: NBC Sports App

Round of 12 drivers who have won at Kansas:

  • Jimmie Johnson (3 wins)
  • Kevin Harvick (2 wins)
  • Matt Kenseth (2 wins)
  • Martin Truex Jr. (1 win)
  • Kyle Busch (1 win)
  • Denny Hamlin (1 win)
  • Brad Keselowski (1 win)

2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Round of 12 standings

The NASCAR Xfinity Series will be opening up its Round of 8 on Saturday afternoon at Kansas Speedway. After that, they head to Texas Motorspeedway and Phoenix Raceway before the field cuts in half ahead of Championship Weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Point values have been reset as they always are at the beginning of each round and William Byron is back on top followed by Justin Allgaier, Elliott Sadler and Daniel Hemric above the cutline. Cole Custer, Brennan Poole, Ryan Reed and Matt Tifft are all below the cutoff but are all within five points of fourth-place Hemric.

While there won’t be many Cup drivers in the fold on Saturday, Camping World Truck Series leader Christopher Bell will be on the track in the XFINITY Series. After recently announcing he would be driving full-time for Joe Gibbs Racing in the XFINITY Series next season, Bell is looking to win this weekend and play the spoiler. In four XFINITY starts this season with JGR, Bell owns one top five and two top 10s. He has never raced in the series at Kansas before.

How to watch the NASCAR XFINITY Series Kansas Lottery 300

Location: Kansas Speedway
Date: Saturday, October 21
Time: 3 p.m. ET
Length: 200 laps/300 miles
Stage 1: Ends on lap 45
Stage 2: Ends on lap 90
Final stage: Scheduled for lap 200
TV: NBC
Live stream: NBC Sports App

2017 NASCAR XFINITY Series Round of 8 standings

The reason Bell can afford to race at Kansas this weekend is because the Truck Series is off this week. After a thrilling race at Talladega on broadcast television, the trucks are preparing to begin the Round of 6 at Martinsville Speedway next weekend. Similarly to the other series, there will be three races before the field narrows to four for Homestead.

Ben Rhodes and Austin Cindric will be the drivers below the cutline when the round begins. Bell leads the way with a remarkable 20-point lead over second-place Johnny Sauter and 33-point lead over third-place Matt Crafton and fourth-place John Hunter Nemechek.

All six drivers in the round have won this season, however Bell has the most with five. Sauter and Nemechek each have two while Crafton, Rhodes and Cindric have taken the checkered flag only one time.

2017 Camping World Truck Series Round of 6 standings

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