The Chase, Playoffs, Bracket, Post-season etc. has been pushed on the NASCAR viewers for a decade and a half now. For many reasons an exclusive playoff in a sport with 40 weekly participants will always be kind of strange and foreign to longtime viewers and new fans alike. As someone that would prefer local late model and modified action; I've held the claim that most of the schedule has been stale for a while.. But the month of August hits full stride in terms of uniqueness of tracks, hot slick track temperatures, short tempers, event prestige and the culmination of a season long points battle in it's purest (as it can be) form. Trucks: From the famous dirt to NASCAR's version of hockey, eh. Eldora Dirt Derby Thursday, Aug 1 9:00 PM Eldora Speedway Wow talk about starting off with a bang. For many of us short track and dirt racing fans, Eldora is one of the coolest crossover events NASCAR has. The carnival like atmosphere and the amount of history and prestige Eldora has in the dirt community makes this the premier event for the series. Pepper in heat races and an LCQ! Plus Ohio is chock full of hardcore race fans. Corrigan Oil 200 Saturday, Aug 10 1:00 PM Michigan International Speedway Michigan can be a spread out affair but the restarts are crazy and the fact that they go from a half mile of dirt to a very wide 2.0 miler is great track diversity. *UNOH 200 presented by Ohio Logistics Thursday, Aug 15 8:30 PM Bristol Motor Speedway Bristol is Bristol, the trucks put on a good show there every time. *Chevrolet Silverado 250 Sunday, Aug 25 2:30 PM Canadian Tire Motorsport Park CTMP has consistently had the wildest finishes in all three series. Multiple disputes on the start finish line and pit road post-race. CTMP has become a knockout brawl on wheels. Canada's market is a rabid hotbed of fans completely neglected nowadays by the other top series. Cup: Time winding down for playoff outsiders *Go Bowling at The Glen Sunday, Aug 4 3:00 PM Watkins Glen International The Glen has become a must see event. the racing over the last decade has become some of the tightest edge of your seat to the wire finishes we see. Produced some surprise winners and hot tempers. *Consumers Energy 400 Sunday, Aug 11 3:00 PM Michigan International Speedway Again Michigan has the potential to be a snoozer but compared to the other tracks during this month its very different. Fast, long, and tons of room to make bonzai moves on restarts. *Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Saturday, Aug 17 7:30 PM Bristol Motor Speedway Used to be the toughest ticket in all of sports. Some people still swear by it that the Bristol night race is more excting/important than the Daytona 500. Though the track has changed a bit. It's still Bristol, way it oughtta be. SEPTEMBER 2019*PLAYOFF RACE *Bojangles’ Southern 500 Sunday, Sep 1 6:00 PM Darlington Raceway This has never been a "Playoff" race before, personally I wish it started at INDY because the throwback weekend is cool enough on its own. The fact we have to hear about "Playoffs!?" (cue Jim Mora) all night puts a bad taste in my mouth. As a resident of South Carolina I can tell you almost every fan in the state claims this is the biggest race of the season. Many college fraternities and sororities from Clemson, USC, and Coastal Carolina (Chants Up!) use this weekend as an excuse to get drunk, eat Bojangles, and spend their money on a driver's t-shirt "because it looks cool." Xfinity: I saved this one for last because it's my favorite part of the schedule it has 3 of the best road courses in the country. There is a good likelihood that one of them will be on rain tires. Every track mentioned has had a crazy finish recently or is steeped in auto racing history. Zippo 200 at The Glen Saturday, Aug 3 3:00 PM Watkins Glen International One can imagine that if the carousel experiment at Sonoma goes well, The Glen will run the boot next year and will probably start with Xfinity series doing it first. The only downside to this race is that cup regulars tend to crash the party and dominate the race. B&L Transport 170 at Mid-Ohio Saturday, Aug 10 3:00 PM Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course Amazing facility! Witnessed the ins and outs of this place attending vintage motorcycle days before NASCAR ever came here. World class circuit with some chaotic events in the past. The only track in every single series that starts the race in a different spot than the start finish/line. Mid-Ohio deserves a cup date but that would down play the uniqueness of this stand-alone event. Food City 300 Friday, Aug 16 7:30 PM Bristol Motor Speedway Said it before Bristol is Bristol, hard to have a bad race here. The shorter events seem to raise the sense of urgency drivers have to get to the front. NASCAR Xfinity Series Race at Road America Saturday, Aug 24 3:00 PM Road America So maybe I have a R/C bias but this is another favorite. A gargantuan 4+ mile circuit with long fast straightaways and tight quarters on a thin slab of asphalt in the Wisconsin hill country. In recent years the venue has produced major upset victories and unbelievable moments especially in turn 5. If "quickie yellows" (Leaders/lap down cars pit on same lap) were implemented every caution period it'd be the favorite event of the year. Sport Clips Haircuts VFW 200 Saturday, Aug 31 4:00 PM Darlington Raceway Darlington in the daytime was how it was meant to be. The sweltering SC sun beating down on the lady in black like she owed it money is how it was for half a century. It pushes drivers and cars to their limit. Less rubber on the track & steamy conditions makes it too tough to tame. Everyone has their opinion but it would be hard to argue against the case for the month of August in NASCAR's top 3 series being the season's climax. 3 Paved short track races 1 Dirt short track race 5 Road course races 4 Intermediate track races (2 of those at Darlington which is a short track in disguise) Couple that with the desperation many middle of the road teams that have to get a win and earn their spot in the "post-season" what's not to like? If you're a true fan then the dog days of summer should inspire you to crank up the A/C crack open a cold beverage and witness the greatest month NASCAR's top series has to offer. It's coming up faster than you think.