NASCAR news ticker March 2023: Three races, three winners in Atlanta

NASCAR news ticker March 2023: Three races, three winners in Atlanta
Credits: Sean Gardner/Getty Images

Here you find our NASCAR news ticker for March 2023 – Latest news: Three drivers won the three races at Atlanta Motor Speedway

March 20, 2023: These are the Atlanta winners (all)

NASCAR visited the “Superspeedway light” in Atlanta, Georgia. The only 1.5-mile oval on the schedule with pack racing ensured excitement and plenty of crashes. Joey Logano was the benchmark in the Cup Series, edging out Brad Keselowski in the final. Cory Lajoie scored his personal best Cup result with a fourth-place finish. Austin Hill took his third Xfinity win, while Josh Williams parked his car on the start-finish line after a disqualification and marched to the pits on foot. The Truck Series race was won by Christian Eckes, who thus took over the overall lead.

March 16, 2023: Huge penalty against Hendrick Motorsports (NCS)

Hendrick has received a hefty penalty from NASCAR for allegedly modifying a spec part on the hood air vents. The team has already appealed. Kaulig has also been hit. Starting numbers 5, 24, 48 and 31 will receive the following penalties: crew chiefs will be banned for four races and fined $100,000. The teams and drivers will each be deducted 100 points. The penalty is identical for the No. 9 car, but no driver points can be deducted from Josh Berry. Denny Hamlin will have 25 points deducted and must pay a $50,000 fine for intentionally wrecking Ross Chastain.

March 15, 2023: Johnson adds to races to his program (NCS)

Jimmie Johnson has added two more races to his 2023 NASCAR schedule. The seven-time champion will drive the No. 84 Legacy Motor Club Chevrolet at both Circuit of The Americas and Charlotte Motor Speedway. COTA is new territory for Johnson, as it was added to the calendar only after his full-time retirement. Kimi Raikkonen and Jenson Button will also compete there. Another race Johnson has already announced is the run at the new Chicago street circuit, where the No. 84 car will also be on the grid.

March 13, 2023: Two races, two race winners in Phoenix (NCS & NXS)

William Byron won a second consecutive NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix Raceway to secure a spot in the 2023 playoffs. The Hendrick Motorsports driver benefited from a late caution to move to the front of the field in Overtime. Chevrolet has won all four regular-season races as a result. In the NASCAR Xfinity Series, Joe Gibbs Racing youngster Sammy Smith celebrated his first win. The 18-year-old from Johnston, Iowa, won the titles in the Arca Series East in 2021 and 2022, drawing attention to himself.

March 12, 2023: Jenson Button set for NASCAR debut (NCS)

The 2009 Formula 1 world champion Jenson Button will make his NASCAR debut at the first circuit race of the 2023 Cup Series. He will pilot the No. 15 Ford Mustang of Rick Ware Racing. Button will face his former teammate Kimi Raikkonen at Circuit of The Americas (COTA), who will also compete on March 26, 2023.

Button will compete in a total of three NASCAR Cup circuit races this season: in addition to COTA, he will also compete in the first city street race in NASCAR Cup history in Chicago and at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

March 10, 2023: Kimi Raikkonen set for NASCAR return (NCS)

The 2007 Formula 1 world champion will contest another Cup race on a road course in the 2023 NASCAR season after making his Cup debut at Watkins Glen in 2022. Unlike The Glen, the Circuit of The Americas is not unfamiliar territory for the 43-year-old: he competed there a total of eight times and won the 2018 US Grand Prix in Austin. Raikkonen will compete in the Project 91 Chevy from Trackhouse. It will be his third start in a NASCAR race after Watkins Glen in 2022 and Charlotte in 2011 (Truck Series).

March 8, 2023: Elliott sidelined, Berry and Taylor set to jump in (NCS)

Chase Elliott will be out of competition at least six weeks due to a broken leg suffered in a snowboarding accident. JR driver Josh Berry will continue to replace the Hendrick driver on the ovals. For the race at the Circuit of The Americas, Rick Hendrick has signed IMSA star Jordan Taylor, who is already involved in the Garage 56 project for the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The Chevrolet factory driver will make his NASCAR debut.

March 6, 2023: These are the Las Vegas race winners (all)

William Byron swept the first two stages for the first time in his career and also secured the race win. The Hendrick driver won the race in Las Vegas and is likely to have punched his ticket for the playoffs. Everything looked set for a win for Kyle Larson, but a late caution for a wall contact by Aric Almirola sent the race into overtime. Byron passed Martin Truex Jr. to secure first place. In the Xfinity Series, Austin Hill won in a thrilling race while Kyle Busch dominated the Truck race at Sin City.

March 4, 2023: Chase Elliott misses race in Las Vegas (NCS)

Chase Elliott has been injured in a snowboarding accident and needs surgery on his leg. The Hendrick Motorsports driver will therefore miss the Cup race in Las Vegas. The 2020 champion will be replaced by Josh Berry, who will compete for Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s team in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. Berry has five Xfinity victories in his career. The 32-year-old has already competed in two Cup races for Spire Motorsports.

March 3, 2023: NASCAR adjusts aerodynamics package (NCS)

NASCAR Cup Series next-gen cars will get a smaller rear wing for some tracks. On circuits as well as on ovals smaller than one mile, the V8 bolides will run with a 2-inch (5.08 cm) spoiler from now on, which is thus significantly smaller than previously used (4 inches; 10.16 cm). The exceptions are Bristol and Dover, where the cars will continue to be driven with the previous wings. Up to 30 percent downforce is lost as a result, which means that the drivers are now more challenged. The premiere of the aero package will take place next week at Phoenix Raceway. This measure is intended to improve racing and thus offer spectators a more interesting show.

NCS = NASCAR Cup Series; NXS = NASCAR Xfinity Series, NCTS = NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series; O = Others

Fabio Gospodarek
Alex Kühnemund

André Wiegold, Fabio Gospodarek and Alex Kühnemund