The western swing continues as NASCAR moves to Phoenix Raceway. In 2005, NASCAR added a second Phoenix race to the schedule. Now, Phoenix plays host to an early season Cup and Xfinity race as well as the final round of the Championship for each of the three national touring series. We take a look at the top five moments at the 1-mile track in the desert.
5: 2021 Lucas Oil 150
The 2021 Camping World Truck Series Championship race may not have been the most exciting race of the season or the championship weekend. In fact, the race wasn’t all that memorable by itself. It was the Champion’s post-race interview that stole the show. Ben Rhodes celebrated his Truck Series Championship in true NASCAR style- with lots of Bud Light.
4: 1988 Checker 500
In the first ever race at Phoenix Raceway, fan favorite Alan Kulwicki picked up his very first Cup Series victory. After the race, he started a tradition that lives on to this day – the Polish victory lap.
3: 2015 Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500
The 2015 fall race in Phoenix brought action, drama, and memories. A late race pass for the lead put Dale Earnhardt Jr. ahead of the dominant Kevin Harvick before a wreck slowed the race. Before the yellow flag was lifted, rain came and ended the race. It was Dale Jr.’s last Cup Series victory.
2: 2020 Season Finale 500
2020’s final race was a changing of the guard for NASCAR and for Hendrick Motorsports. Young fan favorite Chase Elliott won the race and the Championship while 7-time Champion Jimmie Johnson took the checkered flag in his final full-time Cup race.
1: 2016 Good Sam 500
The spring 2016 Phoenix race was the closest finish ever at the track. In NASCAR Overtime, Kevin Harvick bested Carl Edwards by a nose at the stripe. The margin of victory was .010s.