NASCAR at Bristol: Bass Pro Shops Night Race Preview

NASCAR at Bristol: Bass Pro Shops Night Race Preview

The third and final race in the Cup Series Round of 16 is coming up this weekend, and it’s going to be a big one. The race will not only mark the end of the first round of playoffs, but also the end of the road for four playoff racers. Here is the Bass Pro Shops Night Race at Bristol race preview you need to enjoy one of the sport’s most popular races of the year, taking place Saturday, September 16, 2023.


Date: Saturday, September 16, 2023

Time: 7:30 PM – 11:00 PM

Location: Bristol Motor Speedway, Tennessee

How to Watch: USA Network (channel 242)


Last weekend’s race at Kansas Speedway was the second race of the NASCAR Cup Series Round of 16. No. 45 Tyler Reddick of 23XI Racing is now the second playoff racer, after Kyle Larson, to clinch a victory in the post-season.

Reddick won in an exciting race, finishing first in overtime just 0.327 seconds ahead of 23XI Racing co-owner, Denny Hamlin. After landing in second at Darlington, it was a well-deserved win for Reddick.

Rounding out the top-5 finishers were Erik Jones, Kyle Larson and Joey Logano.

On the other side of the standings are the four racers below the playoff line, who will be at risk of elimination if they don’t find themselves above that line after the race at Bristol Speedway. One somewhat shocking name on that list is regular season champion, Martin Truex Jr., followed by Bubba Wallace, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. And Michael McDowell.

The current playoff standings for the 2023 Cup Series are as follows:

No. 5 Kyle Larson (2,117 points and one win)

No. 45 Tyler Reddick (2,111 points and one win)

No. 11 Denny Hamlin (2,105 points)

No. 24 William Byron (2,097 points)

No. 6 Brad Keselowski (2,089 points)

No. 12 Ryan Blaney (2,081 points)

No. 8 Kyle Busch (2,080 points)

No. 1 Ross Chastain (2,074 points)

No. 17 Chris Buescher (2,069 points)

No. 20 Christopher Bell (2,069 points)

No. 22 Joey Logano (2,068 points)

No. 4 Kevin Harvick (2,063 points)

No. 19 Martin Truex Jr. (2,056 points)

No. 23 Bubba Wallace (2,044 points)

No. 47 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (2,041 points)

No. 34 Michael McDowell (2,023 points)

The racers who find themselves in places 13-16 after this week’s race will be eliminated from the 2023 Cup Series Playoffs.


The Bass Pro Shops Night Race isn’t just a big deal because it’s the final race in the Round of 16; it’s a big deal because it takes place at the most popular track in NASCAR, and it’s one of the few night races on the schedule.

Located in Bristol Tennessee, the concrete short track makes for an exciting competition, and is known as the loudest race in NASCAR due to its Coliseum-esque layout. The sounds of cheering fans and engines running bounce between walls, creating an atmosphere like no other.

The race consists of 500 laps around the 0.533-mile (one of the shortest tracks in the NASCAR schedule), totaling 266.5 miles. Bristol Motor Speedway may be short, but it also boasts some of the steepest turns, with 26–30-degree banking in the turns and 6–10-degree banking on the straights.

The length of the track combined with the concrete surface and steep banking leads to some of the closest and most entertaining races of the year.


Since this race is taking place on a concrete track, there’s a chance for Chase Elliot to bump up his playoff points, and potentially even win the whole thing. He’s had four wins this season and performs well on concrete, giving him a bit of an advantage.

Based on the previous two races in the 2023 post-season, Denny Hamlin will certainly be fighting for a win, after performing well but not being able to clinch the win at either track. He will need to fight hard against the likes of Elliot and Kyle Busch, who has won at Bristol eight times in his Cup Series career.

How to watch NASCAR at Bristol Motor Speedway with DIRECTV

You don’t have to be in the stadium to experience the Bass Pro Shops Night Race to the fullest. With DIRECTV, you can bring the race home to you. Watch the final race in the Round of 16 on September 16, 2023, on USA Network, channel 242 on DIRECTV.

You can watch every Cup Series race of the season on DIRECTV, plus thousands of other regional and national sporting events. With DIRECTV Sports Pack, you get over 40 specialty sports networks like NFL Network, NFL RedZone from NFL Network, MLB Network and more, in addition to the ENTERTAINMENT or CHOICE™ Package programming.

For new customers, find out how you can get Sports Pack included for your first three months!

Frequently Asked Questions

When is the Bass Pro Shops Night Race?

The Cup Series Bass Pro Shops Night Race will take place on September 16, 2023, at 7:30pm ET.

What channel is the NASCAR Cup Series race at Bristol Speedway on?

You can watch the Bass Pro Shops Night Race at Bristol on USA Network, channel 242 on DIRECTV.

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