Motorsports: This Saturday a primer for Memorial Day Sunday

KANSAS CITY, KS - MAY 12: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Busch Light Ford, leads the field during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series KC Masterpiece 400 at Kansas Speedway on May 12, 2018 in Kansas City, Kansas. (Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)
KANSAS CITY, KS - MAY 12: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Busch Light Ford, leads the field during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series KC Masterpiece 400 at Kansas Speedway on May 12, 2018 in Kansas City, Kansas. (Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images) /

The month of May ends with one of the best days in motorsports. You can prepare for this big day this Saturday with Formula E, IndyCar and NASCAR.

What is Memorial Day weekend to most people is one of the busiest weekends for motorsport fans, and Memorial Day Sunday is right around the corner.

The Sunday before the holiday begins with Formula 1 in Europe on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea with the Monaco Grand Prix. Action then moves across the Atlantic Ocean to the IndyCar with the legendary Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The day ends in the home of the NASCAR Cup Series for the longest race on the schedule, the Coca-Cola 600, at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

If you need a little practice of something to help you prepare for Memorial Day Sunday, make sure your schedule for this Saturday is clear because this weekend’s racing provides the perfect primer for it.

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Just like on Memorial Day Sunday, the first event is scheduled to take place in Monaco, but instead of Formula 1, the second generation cars of Formula E will race down the storied streets of Monaco. This is the third Monaco ePrix since 2015, as the race has been held biennially, trading places with the Historic Grand Prix of Monaco each year.

Unfortunately, Formula E doesn’t race on the full circuit. The series misses out on the the hill, Casino square, the iconic hairpin, the famous tunnel and the chicane. But the race is still a huge deal, especially this year with the parity in Formula E. There have been eight winners in eight races so far this season. Will someone finally take control of the standings, or will the chaos continue?

IndyCar, meanwhile, heads to its home at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the IndyCar Grand Prix around the track’s road course. This is the sixth annual IndyCar Grand Prix. The race has been dominated by Team Penske and 2014 series champion Will Power in recent years, and it has served as an excellent opening weekend for IndyCar racing at Indianapolis.

The early races of the 2019 season have been dominated by Honda after Josef Newgarden won the season opener at St. Petersburg for Team Penske and Chevrolet. Rookie Colton Herta, veteran Takuma Sato and the 2018 series runner-up Alexander Rossi have each won a race this season, but Team Penske and Chevrolet hope their dominance of the IndyCar Grand Prix continues this weekend, if for no other reason than to keep Honda off the top step of the podium.

The night ends less than 500 miles away at Kansas Speedway for the Digital Ally 400 (they can’t all have cool names). This will be the ninth spring race at Kansas Speedway and the 27th race at the track all-time. The Digital Ally 400 is also the second scheduled night race of the 2019 NASCAR Cup Series season.

Since moving to the night in the 2014 season, the racing in this event has been fantastic. No race has been decided by more than 1.2 seconds. Kevin Harvick defeated Martin Truex Jr. by just 0.390 seconds last spring, and at the first night race, Jeff Gordon squeaked out a 0.112-second victory over Harvick.

Harvick hasn’t finished lower than third place in the spring race at Kansas Speedway at night. He has recorded three runner-up finishes, a third place finish in 2017 and a victory in 2018. He has struggled so far this season, but he remains up in third in the championship standings thanks to eight top 10 finishes and five top five finishes.

Harvick is due for a victory in the 2019 season and the series is heading to perhaps his best race. No team or driver has dominated the track all-time, though. Hendrick Motorsports have earned seven victories at Kansas Speedway, most recently with Chase Elliott this past fall. Joe Gibbs Racing and Team Penske have each earned four victories at the track while Stewart-Haas Racing have earned three.

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There is, of course, more racing to enjoy this weekend. Friday night features the NASCAR Truck Series at Kansas Speedway with the Digital Ally 250. Elsewhere in Europe, the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series is about four hours northeast of Monaco at Italy’s Autodromo di Franciacorta. Both Elite One and Elite Two are scheduled to race on Saturday and Sunday.

The biggest race of the weekend not on Saturday is Sunday’s Formula 1 race, the Spanish Grand Prix, at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. This race is very intriguing right now because of Scuderia Ferrari’s engine upgrade, which they’re bringing to a race ahead of schedule in an attempt to finally beat Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport in 2019.