For the first time in almost two decades, the annual NASCAR Cup Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway is not the season finale. And while today’s race at Homestead is not running on its originally scheduled date, NASCAR was able to squeeze it back into the first half of its 2020 schedule.
The threat of rain in the Miami area based on the forecast could lead to some weather delays Sunday, but it also should alleviate temperatures on what otherwise might be a brutally hot day for drivers for the second straight week.
Kevin Harvick won that race last week at a similar, 1.5 mile intermediate track, which is part of the reason he is among the favorites to win Sunday’s race at Homestead. Martin Truex Jr., who won the mid-week race at Martinsville a few days ago and tends to run well at Homestead, also is among the favorites.
MORE: Watch today’s NASCAR race live with fuboTV (7-day free trial)
The results of Sunday’s race at Homestead will have their typical impact on the NASCAR Cup Series points standings, but they also will set the order of pit stall selection for next week’s race at Talladega without qualifying.
We’re tracking live race updates and highlights as Sunday’s Dixie Vodka 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway plays out. Follow along below.
NASCAR at Homestead: Live race updates, highlights
5:15 p.m. ET: Another bolt of lightning near the track, which means at least another 30 minutes of delay before the race can restart.
5:20 pm radar update and storm south of the track is nearly stationary – lightning inside the 8 mile radius and not going anywhere anytime soon – also some rain looks like it is trying to advance north towards the track – monitoring & updating with @RaceWeather #NASCAR pic.twitter.com/TwGuiDcGtt
— Brian Neudorff (@NASCAR_WXMAN) June 14, 2020
4:54 p.m. ET: Welp. Just a few laps into the race, more lightning strikes in the area, and another delay. This time the red flag comes out.
Huge lightning strikes on the backstretch… Bolts of lightning. #NASCAR
— Chris Knight ツ (@Knighter01) June 14, 2020
4:51 p.m. ET: Almost an hour after it was supposed to start, the Dixie Vodka 400 gets the green flag.
4:41 p.m. ET: Engines are re-fired for the start of the race.
4:18 p.m. ET: NASCAR tells teams it hopes to get engines restarted at 4:35 p.m. ET.
3:57 p.m. ET: Due to a lightning strike in the area, NASCAR tells teams and fans to take shelter. The start of the race is delayed a minimum of 30 minutes.
#NASCAR … Race being delayed by lightning
Can’t race until 30 minutes after last lightning strike
— Dustin Long (@dustinlong) June 14, 2020
3:56 p.m. ET: NASCAR formally announces a delay to the start of the race due to rainfall in Turns 3 and 4 of the 1.5-mile track. Track drying efforts immediately begin.
3:44 p.m. ET: Just as the command to fire engines is made by Pro Football Hall of Famer Jimmy Johnson, reports of rain around the track pause the start of the race. Cars are told to stay on pit road.
3:37 p.m. ET: NASCAR announces B.J. McLeod must start the race at the rear of the field due to unapproved adjustments.
3:08 p.m. ET: Another weather update. Storms are sprinkled throughout South Florida, but nothing yet over the track.
2:32 p.m. ET: Chase Briscoe wins the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Homestead, which started at noon ET as part of a doubleheader with the Cup Series race.
12:50 p.m. ET: Quin Houff’s 00 car fails pre-race inspection twice. He will be forced to start the race from the back of the field.
11:21 a.m. ET: Brian Neudorff, a meteorologist who provides weather info for NASCAR races, predicts there is a 65 percent chance the Homestead race will run on schedule.