Auto Club Race Shortened to 400 Miles

Auto Club Speedway

The Auto Club Speedway spring race will run 400 miles on March 27. (Photo: Getty Images)

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Auto Club Speedway announced Tuesday that the March NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at the track will be 400 miles in length. The race will take place on Sunday, March 27 beginning at 3 p.m. (ET) on FOX.

Last fall, ACS changed the mileage from 500 to 400 for the track's October event and received positive feedback as a result, prompting the change this spring.

October’s race where Tony Stewart won by 0.466 seconds over Clint Bowyer was one of the closest races ever recorded at the Southern California facility. The intense side-by-side racing elicited rave reviews from everyone, including Stewart who said, "The restarts early in the race were out of control. We were five wide!"

Others agreed with Stewart wholeheartedly:

Motor Racing Network: "Simply put, Sunday's race was the best Sprint Cup Series race ever at the two-mile Southern California track."

Motor Sports Weekly News: "Fans that stayed home this time or didn't tune in on TV missed what just might have been the best race this track has ever put on."

Clint Bowyer: "They say you're only as good as your last race.  Well, for this place, that was a hell of a race."

"It's impossible to ignore the on track excitement we experienced at Auto Club Speedway in October, as a result of NASCAR reducing the Chase race from 500 to 400 miles," said ACS President Gillian Zucker.  "We're confident the newly remileaged Auto Club 400 will continue the momentum we have been experiencing and that March’s race will be the most exciting ever at Auto Club Speedway."

Michael Waltrip Racing's No. 00 crew chief, Rodney Childers thinks the change is a positive one.

"I think it’s a good thing," Childers said. "If you watch some of the races out there they can get pretty long and drawn out just like Michigan. California is a place where you have engine failures and things like that because we run a really high RPM on the long straight-aways. Shortening this race will kind of even things out engine wise as it compares to everywhere else that we race. I think it’s a good thing for everyone. Now we have to go a little bit harder, earlier, and that should make for a better show for the fans and that's what matters the most."

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