Jalopnik Weekend Motorsports Preview

Starting this week we've asked our resident expert Girl on Cars to become a Race Girl on Cars and try her hand at a race preview we'll drop every Friday around noon, just in time for your weekend viewing pleasure. All of the upcoming hot weekend racing action can be found just after the jump. — Ed.

Formula 1
What: Chinese Grand Prix, Shanghai International Circuit
When: Qualifying Saturday, race Sunday


The second-to-last F1 race of the season will be another nail-biter for Fernando Alonso fans. The returning world champion has 95 points in the driver's championship, while rookie Lewis Hamilton leads with 107. Kimi Räikkönen is in third with 90 points, but it's doubtful he'll become a serious contender at this stage in the game. Kimi will, however, win the FIA After-Party and Nose-Picking Championship once again this year. At least in our book.

NASCAR Nextel Cup
What: UAW-Ford 500
Where: Talladega Superspeedway, Alabama
When: Qualifying Saturday, race Sunday


Move over Ricky Bobby! Them NASCAR drivers are coming to kick yer butt. Last year, Brian Vickers won his first race at this track after doing a little Shake 'n' Bake with teammate Jimmie Johnson. Vickers bumped Johnson into race leader Dale Earnhardt Jr., then went around the ensuing wreck for the win. This year, Johnson is in first place with 5506 points; Jeff Gordon follows close behind with 5500. Am I the only one who still wonders how crashing into other cars is legal in this series? I suppose you've gotta do what you can to keep things interesting when you can't turn right.

NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series
What: Mountain Dew 250
Where: Talladega Superspeedway, Alabama
When: Qualifying Friday, race Saturday

What could be more fun than watching stock cars drive in ovals? Watching pickup trucks drive on the same track. Woo hoo! At the last race, the Smith's Las Vegas 350, former F1 driver Jacques Villeneuve debuted in the series, placing 21 out of 35. If his NASCAR career is anything like his last few seasons in F1, we should be seeing Jacques hit a wall any day now.

What: Torco Racing Fuels Nationals
Where: Virginia Motorsports Park, Richmond, VA
When: Qualifying Friday and Saturday; eliminations Sunday


The eliminations this weekend for the NHRA POWERade Countdown to One will set the fields for the Top Fuel, Funny Car, and Pro Stock categories. According to the NHRA website, after the race, only the top four competitors in each pro category will be eligible to win world championships during a two-race shootout in Las Vegas and Pomona, CA.

Brandon Bernstein currently leads the Top Fuel category with 21 points ahead of Bob Vandergriff Jr. The Funny Car division will be a battle between Jack Beckman, Ron Capps, Gary Scelzi and Mike Ashley for the final two spots in the top four. In Pro Stock, Allen Johnson and Jeg Coughlin hold the third and fourth place spots, but could be challenged by Kurt Johnson and Jason Line.

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Al Navarro

Maybe Massa could "pull a Senna/Prost/Suzuka" and crash out Hamilton on the first turn, letting Alonso and Kimi duke it out.

Of course, I don't wish any physical injury on any driver (Senna and Prost walked away from those two hatchet jobs), but if Felipe ran light in qualifying and then just had a blip in concentration...