CONCORD, N.C.–With three victories to his credit so far this season, Matt Kenseth has to be considered a serious threat in Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Kenseth got the first of his 27 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories in the 2000 edition of the 600. No wonder he considers it his favorite race.
“The 600 has always been unique,” Kenseth said Thursday at Charlotte. “We had our first win here, so maybe that’s part of it. This is the track that I made my first Nationwide start at, and I have more miles here at this track than any other on the circuit.”
To Kenseth, part of the cachet of NASCAR’s longest race is the difficulty in keeping up with changing track conditions.
“The track goes through huge changes,” Kenseth said. “Typically, it’s very different in the beginning of the race when the sun is still out. It’s usually hot and slick, and then, at the end of the race, after four hours of racing or four-and-a-half hours of racing, the track is as fast as it’s ever going to be, and everybody picks up a second–and it’s on.
“It’s like you wait four hours to run a trophy dash. It’s just a fun event. A lot goes on, you have to pay attention for a long time and really keep up with the adjustments–just one I look forward to and look forward to the challenge.”