CONCORD, N.C. (AP) — The Latest on the NASCAR playoff race at Charlotte Motor Speedway (all times local):
The first-ever NASCAR playoff race on the "roval" — a circuit that is a hybrid of road course and oval — is underway at Charlotte Motor Speedway, with pole sitter Kurt Busch leading the way on the track.
The 400-mile race features a 17-turn, 2.28-mile course that has a 35-foot change in elevation.
Seven-time Cup champion Jimmie Johnson is trying to make it to the next round of the playoffs but is on the outside looking in at the top 12 in the point standings. Twelve of 16 drivers will advance. Johnson currently is 14th in the standings.
Kasey Kahne tells Fox Sports' RaceDay that he hopes to be back in the No. 95 Chevy Camaro for the final seven races of the NASCAR season after missing time because of dehydration issues.
Kahne experienced problems at Darlington Raceway on Sept. 2 when he fought nausea and had trouble seeing for the final 100 laps. He struggled to take in fluids and was sweating throughout the race.
Regan Smith has been filling in for Kahne. He will start again for Kahne in the race at the roval at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
The 38-year-old Kahne plans to retire from full-time NASCAR competition at the end of the season.
NASCAR will leave a troublesome tire barrier at its new angle for Sunday's race on the new roval at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
The layout uses both Charlotte's speedway and a road course through the infield. Multiple drivers had difficulties with a chicane on the backstretch and several cars were damaged when they hit the tire barrier exiting turn 12. NASCAR changed the angle of the barrier before the final Cup practice to create more room for drivers to exit the turn.
The race is the first elimination one in the opening round of NASCAR's playoffs. The 16-driver playoff field will be cut by four drivers after the race. Among those in danger of elimination is seven-time NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson, who won eight Cup races on Charlotte's oval layout.
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