NASCAR pays a visit to Thunder Valley as the Monster Energy Cup Series makes its first visit to Bristol Motor Speedway for the Food City 500 on Sunday, April 7. While it's always a big deal when the circuit comes to Bristol, Tennessee, the news of the weekend has been about Darrell Waltrip announcing his retirement from broadcasting.
As for the race itself, NASCAR's new handling package combined with a traction compound added for better grip resulted in track record speeds. Chase Elliott won the pole with Hendrick Motorsports teammate William Byron on the outside. Could this be the race one of the Hendrick boys breaks through and winds up in Victory Lane?
So if you're wondering, "What NASCAR race is on TV this today?" know this: FS1 is airing the Food City 500 from Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tenn.
Food City 500 Race Time/TV Channel
Time: 2 p.m. ET (Sunday) green flag drops
Track: Bristol Motor Speedway (Bristol, Tenn.)
TV: FS1, coverage begins at 12:30 p.m. ET
Radio: PRN, SIRIUS XM Channel 90
The 2019 Food City 500 has given NASCAR some food for thought on their future. The news cycle at Bristol Motor Speedway was hijacked this week by the man who once won every Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race there for three-and-a-half years straight. Darrell Waltrip chose his Tennessee sanctuary, Thunder Valley, to announce his retirement from the FOX broadcasting booth.
DW's retirement from racing, for good, closes a chapter in NASCAR... and for me. Full transparency: the man was my hero growing up. As an eight-year-old sitting inside one summer afternoon, watching a No. 17 Tide Chevrolet reach Victory Lane would transform my life. I was a stock car fan from that moment on, seeking a career in sports far different than most middle-class kids growing up in Connecticut.
I spent the next decade idolizing a man in his 40s while friends put up posters of Michael Jordan, Derek Jeter, and Brett Favre. But the fact kids like me could connect with an athlete in Waltrip tells you a lot about his personality. Remember, this 84-race winner and three-time Cup Series champion went the final eight-plus years of his career without a trip to Victory Lane.
"I always like to say that when I'd go to town, people'd say are you here with the show?" Waltrip explained during his first retirement announcement in 1999 (as a driver). "I'd say, no, I'm the show. That's been my career in a nutshell."