NRA members and NASCAR fans came out to one of America’s classic tracks to enjoy a summer night of racing and the great outdoors. Mother Nature was showing her full glory on Saturday, causing heavy rains and lightning that postponed and ultimately rescheduled the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway for Sunday. The wild, rain-delayed race finally started Sunday afternoon, with Kevin Harvick eventually taking the checkered flag.
The Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race is the brainchild of Johnny Morris, founder of Bass Pro Shops, and Richard Childress, owner of the NASCAR championship team, Richard Childress Racing (RCR), and the NRA’s Second Vice President. Morris and Childress partnered with Bristol Motor Speedway to create one of the most iconic motorsport events in the world, and successfully combined the love of racing, hunting and the great outdoors. Bristol Motor Speedway is located in Tennessee amongst the Smokey and Blue Ridge mountain ranges, providing a picturesque backdrop for an exciting NASCAR adventure. Bass Pro Shops and the NRA are working together to highlight hunting and wildlife conservation, along with the freedom and love of the shooting sports on a national stage. Jerry Caldwell, executive vice president and general manager of Bristol Motor Speedway, was more than thrilled to partner with Childress and Morris for such a great cause. According to Caldwell, “Hunters and sporting enthusiasts attend NASCAR races in droves. We share the same customers and that makes this a well-suited partnership.”
Winner Kevin Harvick, driving the No. 4 Chevrolet, led a total four times, totaling a 128 lap lead. This was a significant win for Chevrolet, as this was their first checkered flag in the Night Race in a dozen years. Finishing second was Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. in the Ford No. 17 car, which was painted with a special theme honoring the late Bryan Clauson. Stenhouse finished 1.933 seconds behind race winner Harvick. Denny Hamlin, driving the No. 11 Toyota, rebounded from a pit road penalty and unscheduled pit stop to finish third. Driving the No. 3 Chevrolet for the RCR team, Austin Dillon, came in fourth place, following his victory in Friday’s XFINITY Series race.