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NASCAR At Michigan: Rain Delays Quicken Loans 400 Start

Marcos Ambrose will be on the pole for today's Quicken Loans 400 at the Michigan International Speedway just a little bit longer than he anticipated.

Showers have delayed the start of the the race, originally scheduled for 1:19 Eastern. The 2-mile race track generally takes between 90 minutes and two hours to dry after a significant downpour ends, but NASCAR is optimistic that the 200-lap race will go green later this afternoon.

Rain is just the latest kink in a weekend that saw average lap speeds of over 200 miles per hour, including the first qualifying lap of that speed in over a quarter-century. Significant wear on the left side tires during practice forced NASCAR and Goodyear's hand. A significantly harder left-side tire was flown in and mounted for teams use in a practice session last night and today's race. There were no tire issues, but the speeds were down by more than seven miles per hour from the 203.241 average Ambrose blazed to only a couple of hours earlier.

Throw in the rain, which washes all of the rubber laid down by five practice sessions and qualifying - along with Nationwide Series and ARCA practice, qualifying, and races - and it is one more question mark in a long weekend of unknowns.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.