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Competition format for Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum includes heat races, last-chance qualifiers

The first-ever Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum is a two-day event that consists of practice, heat races and two last-chance qualifying races, setting the stage for a 150-lap main event at the iconic Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Feb. 6 on FOX.

All 36 Charter teams are in Los Angeles, but only 23 will make the final show on Sunday night under the lights.

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Here’s a breakdown of how the event works. Scroll to the bottom to the see the information presented visually.

• Saturday, Feb. 5: Practice and single-car qualifying

NASCAR Cup Series drivers took to the quarter-mile paved oval for a two-hour practice session, then ended the first day with single-car qualifying runs.

The single-car qualifying speeds will determine the fields and lineups for Sunday’s four heat races (see below for more on that).

MORE: Kyle Busch fastest in qualifying

• Sunday, Feb. 6: Heat races

Schedule: 3 p.m. ET, FOX (NASCAR RaceDay comes on at 2 p.m. ET)

There will be four 25-lap heat races with nine cars in each race Sunday, with those events starting at 3 p.m. ET on FOX. The four fastest cars from Saturday’s single-car qualifying — Kyle Busch, Tyler Reddick, Justin Haley, Joey Logano — are on the pole position for each heat race (fastest speed in the first heat race, second fastest speed in the second heat race, etc.).

The first heat race consists of cars with qualifying speeds ranked one, five, nine, 13, 17, 21, 25, 29 and 33 on the speed chart. The second heat race will consist of cars with qualifying speeds ranked two, six, 10, 14, 18, 22, 26, 30 and 34. And so on.

• How to advance from the heat race to the Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum

The top four finishers in each heat race — 16 total cars ­— will automatically advance through to the Clash later in the evening. The winner of the first heat race will start on the pole, with the outside pole going to the winner of the second heat race.

The winners of heat race three and four will make up the second row. The remaining order for the 16 cars will be filled out in the same manner.

MORE: Track the lineup movement Sunday

• Sunday, Feb. 6: Last Chance Qualifying races

Schedule: Approximately 4:10 p.m. ET, FOX

The Last Chance Qualifying races follow the heat races. Each heat race has nine cars, with four automatically advancing to the main event. That leaves five cars from each heat race, or 20 total cars, not advancing.

All 20 of those cars will advance to two ensuing 50-lap Last Chance Qualifying races, 10 in each race.

The starting order for each LCQ is based on finishing positions in the heat races, with the remaining field from heat races one and three racing in the first LCQ event. The second LCQ race is comprised of cars from heat race two and four.

The top three finishers (six total cars) in both Last Chance Qualifying races will advance to the Busch Light Clash, filling out positions 17-22 of the 23 available positions.

The final spot is reserved for the driver who finished the highest in the 2021 points standings who does not transfer on finishing position in the heat races or Last Chance Qualifying races. So in essence, that means 2021 champion Kyle Larson is the only driver locked into the field.

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• Sunday, Feb. 6: Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum

With the field set, the 150-lap main event is scheduled for 6 p.m. ET on FOX.

“I’ve had the chance to drive on the track through iRacing and make some laps in the NextGen car at Bowman-Gray on a similar layout, and there’s no doubt that this race is going to be awesome,” said Clint Bowyer, longtime former NASCAR Cup Series driver and current FOX Sports analyst. “The different qualifying events and format for the Clash are only going to add to what will be an unforgettable weekend. This is definitely a race you’re not going to want to miss.”

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