Motorsports Weekend Guide: February 13 to February 15

Welcome to another weekly installment of Hooniverse’s guide to motor racing this coming weekend. The forthcoming few days bring the beginning of the longest sports season in the country and extreme racing both on land and off-road. Your weekend in racing starts here and as this is being published, your humble correspondent is probably drooling (or attempting to, at least) on the Nissan GT-R LM at the Chicago Auto Show. Hooniverse will have more on that soon, but follow the jump for the full racing scoop.


NASCAR Sprint Cup: Sprint Unlimited & Daytona 500 Qualifying (Daytona International Speedway)

NASCAR conceives its 2015 season this weekend, meaning that in nine months a champion will emerge from the greasy folds of the NASCAR birth canal. Too much? That was too much, wasn’t it?
Let’s start over. This weekend’s 75-lap Sprint Unlimited (Get it? Because of the series’ title sponsor?) race features a competition caution at the 25-lap mark to bunch up the field. If that sounds like a gimmick, it is. The short, primetime race kicks off SpeedWeek at the newly renovated Daytona tri-oval with qualifying Sunday, two 60-lap Budweiser Duels on Thursday, and a full plate of supporting races (including ARCA’s season opener Saturday and the K&N East race, described briefly below). It exhausts me just writing all that, but NASCAR fans seem enthused for it.
Website: NASCAR site. DIS site. Event page. Schedule. Entry list. Full SpeedWeek schedule.
Supporting series: LucasOil 200 Presented by AutoZone (ARCA).
Live coverage: Sprint coverage on Saturday @ 8 p.m. ET on Fox (TV) and Motor Racing Network (Radio/Streaming audio). Qualifying coverage on Sunday @ 1:30 p.m. ET on Fox and MRN. ARCA – Saturday @ 4 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 1.

Red Bull Air Race: Abu Dhabi

The Red Bull Air Race begins its 10th season of airborne time trials with terrifically talents pilots putting their performance planes through their paces around the world. The season kicks off in Abu Dhabi where Nigel Lamb looks to defend his title from 2014, a season in which he only won one race (though he scored five consecutive runner-up finishes to wrap up the season). If you’ve never seen it, check it out whenever Fox gets around to catching up with the rest of the world in broadcasting this weekend’s trials.
Website: Air races site. Event page with schedule. Enty list.
Live coverage: Live streaming outside the U.S. on RBAR site. Delayed broadcast on Fox eventually.

World Rally Championship: Rally Sweden

After an eventful first round at Monte Carlo, the WRC heads north for Rally Sweden, a test where conditions range from snowbank-lined gravel roads to sub-zero (Fahrenheit) service areas. The rally kicks off Thursday night with the super special stage at Karlstad’s horse racing stadium (which is repeated again Friday night) and then covers stages that will even traverse the Norway-Sweden border.
The don’t miss Rally Sweden features is Colin’s Crest, a massive jump named after the late legend Colin McRae. The longest leap over the Crest takes home an award; two-liter aeronauts will try to eclipse Ken Block’s 37-meter record this year.
Website: WRC site. Rally Sweden site. Event page. Schedule. Entry list. Maps! Season standings.
Supporting series: WRC 2.
Live coverage: Live coverage Thursday @ 2 p.m. & Sunday @ 4 a.m. & 6 a.m. on MAVTV. WRC Live coverage throughout with live stage timing and streaming radio.

NASCAR K&N Pro Series East: The Hart to Heart Breast Cancer Foundation 150 (New Smyrna Speedway)

NASCAR’s development series begins  less than 10 miles from the Big Show at Daytona on New Smyrna’s half-mile oval. Without delving too deeply into what to expect, Chili Bowl winner and rising star Rico Abreu will make his stock-car debut here. The K&N race is only part of the weeklong World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing, nearly all of which can be watched on
Website: K&N East site. New Smyrna site. Event page. Schedule. Entry list.
Live coverage: No live TV for Sunday’s race @ 7:30 p.m. ET. Delayed TV broadcast Thursday @ 10:30 p.m. on NBC Sports Network.

SVRA/VARA: Duel in the Desert (Sprint Mountain Motorsports Ranch | Pahrump, NV)

Yes, Pahrump is a real place. They almost held a 24 Hours of LeMons race there. This weekend, they’ll host the Sports Car Vintage Racing Association and the Vintage something or other acronym I can’t be bothered to look up right now.
Website: SVRA site. Pahrump site. Schedule. Entry list.
Live coverage: Live timing on Race Monitor app for smartphone and devices.
[Lead photo copyright 2014 Hooniverse/Eric Rood | Other photos: NASCAR, Red Bull USA, WRC]

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