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Despite his dominance on the street courses, Tyler Reddick warns drivers of “tricky” challenges in the Chicago street races

NASCAR Cup Series racers are used to making left turns during most of their races. However, in recent years, street races have been added, and frankly, not all drivers have been impressed with this change. There will be a total of five street races in 2024, and the Chicago Street Race is next.

But unlike the usual street racing, the Chicago street racing is a whole different beast. For experienced riders, street racing is still a steep learning curve, but even well-known street racer Tyler Reddick isn’t sure what to expect from the Chicago street racing. That adds an extra layer of uncertainty and challenge for riders.

Tyler Reddick is nervous before the Chicago Street Race

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The 23XI Racing star is the best road racer considering the events of last season and this season. He has an average running position of 8.43; no other driver comes close to that. In 2023, he won at COTA and had three top-10 finishes in the four remaining road races. He continued his good run this season, picking up a P5 at COTA and a P8 result in Sonoma.

What do you think will be the biggest challenge for the riders at the Chicago Street Race?

Of all those races, last year’s Chicago road race was a dismal showing for Reddick, where he finished just 28th. And while he’s put together a good streak of five top-10 finishes in his last six Cup starts, he was aware of the challenges that come with preparing for a road race. “The challenge of this weekend is very different to what we normally experience every week. We experienced this street circuit a year ago, but it is just incredibly demanding.‘ he said in an interview with News Nation.

Reddick also added that there is nothing on the schedule similar to the Chicago Street Course to help teams prepare for what’s to come. “You really have to look at this race a little bit differently to the others. It’s just a type of race that we haven’t done very often and I understand now from last year’s experience why the street circuit is so demanding and why the amount of preparation we put into it is very tricky.”

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With so much uncertainty and a near-paltry track record, it’s actually hard to pick one driver as the favorite to win the Grant Park 165 Cup race. This gives several racers the opportunity to take full advantage of their road racing experience and be among the favorites to win the race on Sunday.

The top contenders for victory this weekend

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Although Tyler Reddick doesn’t fancy his chances too much, the stats favor him as one of the favorites. With road races spread throughout the schedule, it’s difficult to navigate a different track. However, Reddick has consistently performed well in road races, and the above stats back up his position as one of the frontrunners.

  1. Next up we have Shane van Gisbergen. He is the only driver to have won the only road race in Chicago, so many eyes will be on him to see if he can defend his victory. Not to mention, SVG is a road racing specialist and has won two Xfinity road races, so keep an eye out for the speedster from New Zealand, as he could clean up all week. He will compete in both Xfinity Series and Cup Series events this Sunday.
  2. It’s just hard to keep Christopher Bell out of this group considering how fast the No. 20 team has been over the last month. They’ve definitely stepped up the pace since their second win of the season at Charlotte and haven’t looked back since. Additionally, he has a total of four top-10 finishes in the road races during the 2023-24 season. He certainly could have won the COTA race this year, where he finished second to William Byron. The No. 20 Toyota Camry is nothing short of a rocket, and it wouldn’t be a surprise if Bell wins the road race in Chicago.
  3. Of course, we had to include a surprise pick to close out this list. And there is no better wildcard selection right now than Kyle Busch. Yes, given the uncertain racing conditions and the driver desperately needing good results, the Chicago road race couldn’t have come at a better time for him. Well, he’s no slouch when it comes to road racing. In 2023, he finished in the top five in four of the five road races, including two second places. Last year, he got a P5 finish in Chicago, so don’t count rowdy out of the race, as he can certainly provide fireworks this weekend.