The Oneida Daily Dispatch (Oneida, NY)

Bristol Motor Speedway Dirt

6 p.m. ET Sunday, FOX

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• The iconic half-mile bullring in Northeast Tennessee will be transforme­d into a state-of-theart dirt racing facility for the Food City race.

• Known as The Last Great Colosseum, Bristol Motor Speedway’s stadium-like structure serves as a versatile multi-use venue that hosts major auto races, football games, concerts and many other captivatin­g events.

• The very first NASCAR race at BMS, held on July 30, 1961, was won by Jack Smith with relief help from Johnny Allen.

• While enjoying racing at the iconic oval, fans are offered a unique viewing experience courtesy of Colossus TV, the world’s largest outdoor centerhung four-sided video screen.

• Bristol hosts races in several NASCAR touring series, highlighte­d by two major NASCAR Cup Series weekends. The biggest names in NASCAR, including Dale Earnhardt, Darrell Waltrip, Cale Yarborough, Richard Petty, Jeff Gordon, Rusty Wallace, Kyle Busch, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Bobby Allison have earned victories at the legendary track.

• Food City is celebratin­g its milestone 30th anniversar­y of sponsoring the spring Cup race at BMS and is NASCAR’S second longest running race entitlemen­t sponsor in the sport. Food City has been involved in the event since 1987 through their hosting of one of the most popular fan events on the NASCAR circuit, Food City Family Race Night.

NEXT GEN ON DIRT

The Next Gen car has been praised by many drivers during the season’s first eight races, all of which have taken place on superspeed­ways or longer short tracks.

Next for Next Gen is Sunday’s Food City Dirt Race at the dirt-transforme­d Bristol Motor Speedway. The surface alone is an enigma to competitor­s who have risen through the NASCAR racing ranks solely on asphalt.

Throw a new car into the mix, and the majority of drivers have no idea what to expect when they turn on the lights at The Last Great Colosseum on Easter Sunday night.

“I don’t know,” last year’s winner Joey Logano said. “I’ve never seen a dirt car with independen­t rear suspension before. So that will be different. The track is a little different, right? You’ve got a little progressiv­e banking up top, so that may change it up a little bit.

“We’re racing at night, so that should help the dust factor a little bit. We’ll just kind of wait and see. Over time, we’ll kind of be able to put all that together. Beats me. I’ll figure it out.”

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