Livescore Thursday, April 25

NASCAR hits the road this weekend, rolling into California’s wine country for the Toyota / Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway. It is just the second of five road courses to be run in the 36-race Cup Series schedule.

Here’s everything you need to know about the Toyota / Save Mart 350 weekend:

Toyota / Save Mart 350 TV/streaming schedule

All times Eastern

5-6 p.m.: Practice (FS2)
6-7:30 p.m.: Qualifying (FS2)

2-3 p.m.: Pre-race show (FS1)
3-3:30 p.m.: Pre-race show (Fox)
3:30-7 p.m.: Toyota / Save Mart 350 (Fox, PRN, SiriusXM)

Toyota / Save Mart 350 details

Track: Sonoma Raceway (1.99-mile, 11-turn permanent road course) in Sonoma County, California
Length: 110 laps for 350 kilometers
Last year’s winner: Daniel Suárez, Trackhouse Racing Chevrolet

‘The Chute’ returns for 2023

When the track opened in 1968, it was a 2.52-mile, 12-turn road course utilizing the dramatic rises and drops of the natural terrain and incorporating the drag strip for two portions. A mid-90s redevelopment eliminated the Turn 6 “Carousel” — a 180-degree sweeping downhill left-hander — and introduced the “The Chute,” a downhill straightaway that leads into the flat Turn 7. In 2019, NASCAR went back to the original and now will re-introduce “The Chute.”

Chase Elliott back from suspension

Hendrick Motorsports’ Chase Elliott returns this weekend from the one-race suspension he was issued for wrecking Denny Hamlin at the Coca-Cola 600. Elliott, who missed six races earlier in the season with a broken leg, currently sits in 27th in the points and likely needs a win to automatically qualify for the playoffs. Six of Elliott’s 18 career wins have come on road courses.

Top drivers, best bets for the Toyota / Save Mart 350

NASCAR’s most versatile — and dominant — driver once again enters a race weekend as a favorite. Kyle Larson has won the pole position for the last five races in Sonoma thus has 5-to-1 odds, according to BetMGM. Tyler Reddick won the only other road course this season at Circuit of the Americas and shares the same +500 moneyline.

Best odds to win

• Kyle Larson +500
• Tyler Reddick +500
• Chase Elliott +550
• William Byron +900
• Kyle Busch +1000

Yahoo Sports’ Nick Bromberg wrote earlier in the week on the betting landscape, noting good mid-tier value in three-time Sonoma winner Martin Truex Jr. (+2000) and Austin Cindric (+2000), who finished fifth last year in his lone start at the track. Bromberg also likes Denny Hamlin as a 35-to-1 longshot, citing the veteran’s four previous top-five finishes in Sonoma.

Toyota / Save Mart 350 entry list

Ross Chastain (1), Trackhouse Racing Chevrolet
Austin Cindric (2), Team Penske Ford
Austin Dillon (3), Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
Kevin Harvick (4), Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
Kyle Larson (5), Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
Brad Keselowski (6), RFK Racing Ford
Corey LaJoie (7), Spire Motorsports Chevrolet
Kyle Busch (8), Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
Chase Elliott (9), Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
Aric Almirola (10), Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
Denny Hamlin (11), Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Ryan Blaney (12), Team Penske Ford
Chase Briscoe (14), Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
Andy Lally (15), Rick Ware Racing Ford
A.J. Allmendinger (16), Kaulig Racing Chevrolet
Chris Buescher (17), RFK Racing Ford
Martin Truex Jr. (19), Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Christopher Bell (20), Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Harrison Burton (21), Wood Brothers Racing Ford
Joey Logano (22), Team Penske Ford
Bubba Wallace (23), 23XI Racing Toyota
William Byron (24), Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
Justin Haley (31), Kaulig Racing Chevrolet
Michael McDowell (34), Front Row Motorsports Ford
Zane Smith (38), Front Row Motorsports Ford
Ryan Preece (41), Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
Grant Enfinger (42), Legacy Motor Club Chevrolet
Erik Jones (43), Legacy Motor Club Chevrolet
Tyler Reddick (45), 23XI Racing Toyota
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (47), JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet
Alex Bowman (48), Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
Conor Daly (50), TMT Racing Chevrolet
Todd Gilliland (51), Rick Ware Racing Ford
Ty Gibbs (54), Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Josh Bilicki (78), Live Fast Motorsports Ford
Ty Dillon (77), Spire Motorsports Chevrolet
Daniel Suárez (99), Trackhouse Racing Chevrolet

Weather for the Toyota / Save Mart 350

The forecast calls for unseasonably cool and overcast conditions with temperatures in the mid-70s. This race is typically run in conditions 20 degrees hotter under a cloudless sky which puts a ton of stress on the front tires and brakes with three heavy braking zones following long, flat-out stretches on the course. The cooler temperatures should make tire degradation more predictable, leading to longer green-flag runs and placing importance on pit-lane performance for the crews.

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