Skip to content

NASCAR does its best endurance racing imitation with Chicago delays

Sep 16, 2013, 2:00 PM EDT

Geico 400 Getty Images

It seems hard to believe considering the official time of its race was 3 hours, 10 minutes and 56 seconds. But from when the scheduled green flag was supposed to take place for Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series GEICO 400 at Chicagoland Speedway and when the checkered finally flew, it was nearly a 12-hour marathon.

The race was supposed to green shortly after 2:00 p.m. ET, 1:00 p.m. CT and local time. The first batch of rain and track-drying caused more than an hour delay before the initial green flag. Then of course, after 110 laps of racing, came the long delay of 5 hours, 10 minutes and 21 seconds before an eventual – and merciful – restart.

By that point in the night, past 10:00 p.m. ET and 9:00 p.m. CT, you wouldn’t blame the competitors, the media, or the fans who had stuck around through the delay for hoping that the race would run 24 or so more laps – to hit the half distance mark of 134 laps – and call it a night as an official day. Yet it was at that point the rain gods held off and the race ran to its conclusion, with several Chasers having issues and Joe Gibbs Racing’s pair of Chase-eligible Toyotas posting a 1-2 finish, led by Matt Kenseth.

The time was past midnight E.T. and 11:00 p.m. CT, and NASCAR had done an equivalent day to legendary 12 Hours of Sebring – except not racing for all 12 hours consecutively as they do in central Florida every March.

You don’t necessarily have the opportunity to appreciate endurance racing, and some of the competitions like Sebring, and like the 24-hour races in Daytona and Le Mans, from a casual NASCAR perspective until you see a day like today take place where it becomes a marathon thanks to adverse weather conditions.

And even so, 12 hours isn’t 12 hours because you have hours of pre-race festivities ahead of the race and all the post-race debrief afterwards.

It’s a very tired NASCAR press corps today, you’d imagine, and should realistically be a day of rest. The NASCAR community has earned it after the last week and a day.

Latest Posts
  1. FIA WEC: Solid first outing for Mark Webber and Porsche

    Apr 20, 2014, 6:00 PM EDT

    FIA World Endurance Championship 6 Hours of Silverstone Getty Images

    Former Red Bull F1 driver finishes third, while Porsche’s GTE-Pro squads finish 1-2 in class.

  2. New incentive for NASCAR Sprint Cup teams to win races: free breakfast!

    Apr 20, 2014, 5:10 PM EDT

    boxcar grille

    Trophies and big paychecks are no longer the only things a NASCAR Sprint Cup driver and team get when they win a race. Now they get a big breakfast, too. According to Statesville.com, the Boxcar Grille in Statesville, N.C., has begun serving breakfast to winning teams in the Charlotte area after they return from capturing a Cup race.

  3. FIA WEC: Title defense starts poorly for Audi

    Apr 20, 2014, 4:30 PM EDT

    FIA World Endurance Championship 6 Hours of Silverstone Getty Images

    Both of their Le Mans Prototypes fail to see the checkered flag at Silverstone due to accidents.

  4. NASCAR’s Chad Knaus, NFL coach Ron Rivera swap strategies, philosophies

    Apr 20, 2014, 4:10 PM EDT

    (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken) AP

    While he probably can’t throw a football more than 20 or 30 yards, Chad Knaus is a diehard Carolina Panthers fan. And while football and stock car racing are polar opposites, they do have some similarities, particularly when it comes to team building, success, strategy and preparation for each game or race. Knaus, a six-time Sprint Cup champion crew chief for Jimmie Johnson, recently called Panthers’ head coach Ron Rivera to throw around and share ideas that might be beneficial to both men.

  5. Hermie Sadler to promote new wrestling group in Denny Hamlin’s Short Track Showdown

    Apr 20, 2014, 2:49 PM EDT

    Hermie Sadler is seen in an advertisement promoting his involvement in Denny Hamlin's Short Track Showdown on Thursday at South Boston (Va.) Speedway, as well as being named to the board of directors of the new Global Force Wrestling association. (Illustration courtesy of Global Force Wrestling) Hermie Sadler is seen in an advertisement promoting his involvement in Denny Hamlin's Short Track Showdown on Thursday at South Boston (Va.) Speedway, as well as being named to the board of directors of the new Global Force Wrestling association. (Illustration courtesy of Global Force Wrestling)

    Hermie Sadler will never be confused with former wrestling greats Hulk Hogan, The Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin – not even Rik “Wooooo” Flair. But the NASCAR analyst for Fox Sports 1 has been a longtime fan of wrestling and will now become somewhat of a decision maker, too.

  6. Toyota scores 1-2 finish in WEC season opener at Silverstone

    Apr 20, 2014, 1:58 PM EDT

    FIA World Endurance Championship 6 Hours of Silverstone Getty Images

    Sebastien Buemi, Anthony Davidson, and Nicolas Lapierre take the No. 8 Toyota to the win in the Six Hours of Silverstone.

  7. Call him Professor Junior: Dale Earnhardt Jr. going back to school

    Apr 20, 2014, 1:07 PM EDT

    Dale Earnhardt Jr. plays teacher and Kyle Busch the dutiful student prior to last Saturday's race at Darlington Raceway.  (Photo: Jeff Curry/Getty Images) Getty Images

    More than 20 years after graduating, Dale Earnhardt Jr. is going back to school. Well, for at least one day. Earnhardt will take part in a two-hour session on May 8 with two student groups, wrapped around an all-school assembly at Seaman High School in Topeka, Kansas, according to a report in the Topeka Capital-Journal.

  8. Happy Easter from MotorSportsTalk!

    Apr 20, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT

    Credit: Remains Credit: Remains

    We hope your Easter’s filled with family, friends…and maybe some jelly beans.

  9. Difficult weekend for Raikkonen worth just four points

    Apr 20, 2014, 9:45 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of China Getty Images

    Finn can only come home in eighth for Ferrari, some 50 seconds behind teammate Fernando Alonso.

  10. Hulkenberg and Bottas quietly brilliant in China

    Apr 20, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of China - Practice Getty Images

    Largely unnoticed, these two youngsters were brilliant today in China.

  11. VIDEO: Vettel explains decision to not let Ricciardo past

    Apr 20, 2014, 8:00 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of China Getty Images

    German driver saw no reason to follow team orders, but soon realised that there was no point in holding Ricciardo up.

  12. Rosberg perseveres after telemetry failure to finish second

    Apr 20, 2014, 7:15 AM EDT

    Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg AP

    German driver downbeat after losing to Hamilton yet again, but in the grand scheme of things, it was a great result.

  13. Chinese GP called two laps early after checkered flag mix-up

    Apr 20, 2014, 6:30 AM EDT

    Lewis Hamilton AP

    Embarrassing error sees race end on lap 54, not lap 56; Kobayashi the only driver to lose a position.

  14. Alonso scores Ferrari’s first podium finish of 2014

    Apr 20, 2014, 6:15 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of China Getty Images

    Ferrari ends torrid week with something to smile about as Alonso finishes third in China.

  15. VIDEO: Vettel ignores team orders, telling team “tough luck”

    Apr 20, 2014, 5:47 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of China Getty Images

    German driver refuses to let Daniel Ricciardo past at first, but ultimately thinks better of it.

  16. Hamilton astonished by Mercedes pace after China win

    Apr 20, 2014, 5:30 AM EDT

    Mercedes Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain drives during the Chinese F1 Grand Prix at the Shanghai International circuit Reuters

    British driver delighted with team effort, and pleased to see teammate Nico Rosberg reach the podium again.

  17. Hamilton makes it three with lights to flag victory in China

    Apr 20, 2014, 4:43 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of China Getty Images

    British driver goes wire-to-wire to claim his third straight win and number 25 of his F1 career.

  18. WATCH LIVE: Can anyone spring a Shanghai surprise?

    Apr 20, 2014, 2:15 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of China - Qualifying Getty Images

    As the Mercedes turf war rumbles on, Red Bull and Ferrari will be waiting in the wings to pick up the pieces.

  19. Starting grid for the 2014 Chinese Grand Prix

    Apr 20, 2014, 2:00 AM EDT

    Daniel Ricciardo, Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel AP

    Here’s how the drivers will line up for the 2014 Chinese Grand Prix today, live on NBCSN and Live Extra from 2:30am ET.

  20. Hamilton chases first ever career three-peat in China

    Apr 20, 2014, 1:30 AM EDT

    Lewis Hamilton AP

    He has come close before, but Hamilton finally can make it three wins in a row today in China.

Today on NASCAR AMERICA

Top 10 NASCAR Driver Searches
  1. J. McMurray (4773)
  2. A. Seuss (1910)
  3. B. Myers (1476)
  4. J. Myers (1364)
  5. L. Fleming (1352)
  1. J. Boston (1163)
  2. T. Hessert (1138)
  3. C. Edwards (1063)
  4. P. Kligerman (1050)
  5. B. Loftin (1036)