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NASCAR’s Big Race This Week Just Down The Thruway

Marcos Ambrose battles Jimmie Johnson during last year's race at Watkins Glen (Getty Images)

Five races to go before the start of the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship including this Sunday’s race at Watkins Glen the second of the season’s two road course races. A nearly two and a half mile, 11-turn course track in the Fingers Lakes region about two and a half hours from Buffalo. Marcos Ambrose is the defending champion winning his first Sprint Cup race in a green-white-checkered finish when he passed Brad Keselowski.

Tony Stewart holds the record for most Watkins Glen victories with five. Jeff Gordon and Mark Martin each won three in a row. Gordon holds the track record for most laps led with 233, but his last win came back in 2001.

A.J. Allmendinger is speaking out about what got him suspended and ultimately released from Penske Racing. He told ESPN he tested positive for the prescription pill Adderall. It came during the week of the Sprint Cup race at Kentucky Speedway when he told a friend he was tired and his friend gave him a pill he said was a workout supplement that would give him energy. Two days later, Allmendinger randomly tested positive for an amphetamine. He is currently going through NASCAR’s “Road to Recovery” program.

Joey Logano is mulling offers for two full-time Sprint Cup rides next year, including one to remain with Joe Gibbs Racing. He’s in the final year of his contract in the number-20 Toyota at Gibbs Racing. ESPN recently reported that Matt Kenseth will takeover the number 20 next year. And Logano could get the number-22 car at Penske Racing after Allmendinger was released.

Dodge has formally announced its departure from NASCAR at the end of this season involving both Sprint Cup and the Nationwide Series. That decision coming after Penske Racing revealed earlier this year that it’s switching to Ford next year.

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