The 2022 Spring Las Vegas Race Report continues the NextGen trend of more accidents and spins, but closer finishes. More data can be found on the Las Vegas Motor Speedway stats page.
As usual, we start with the race-at-a-glance graph, which I could not make look pretty, no matter how many color changes I made.
The Box Score
- 12 cautions for 60 laps (21.9%)
- 1 Competition Caution
- 2 Stage End Cautions
- 1 Stalled Car
- 3 Spins
- 5 Accidents
- 23 lead changes
- Down from 27 last year, 25 in 2020
- With the exception of the last two races, higher than any race since 2007.
- 15 Distinct Leaders
- Four of those 15 led during pit stops or cautions
- So there were 11 Quality leaders.
Standout Stats for the 2022 Spring Vegas Race Report
For the second week in a row, I’m highlighting accidents and spins.
With 5 accidents and 3 spins, the Spring 2022 race was not the most accident-filled race in LVMS history.
- There were 8 accidents in 2007
- 2008 and 2009 also beat out 2020
- But this was the most accidents/spins since 2009. The more recent trends were three or less accidents.
Lead Lap and DNFs
While 62.2% of the field finished on the lead lap (a little above average), 2022 is the largest percentage of DNFs for a spring race since 2005.
- In 2022, 18.9% of cars failed to finish the race
- In 2011 and 2012, 18.6% DNFed
- In 2005, 20.9% of the cars didn’t complete the race.
The Race Rhythm
Las Vegas races usually have long green-flag runs. Not this race.
- We normally have 1.5-2 cautions per 100 miles atspring Las Vegas Races, but the 2022 race was almost 3 cautions per 100 miles.
- The most cautions at a spring Las Vegas race was 2009: 14.
- The 2009 race included 4 debris cautions
- The 2022 race had three planned cautions
But what was more important than the sheer number of cautions was where they came in the race. The graph below shows each caution as a colored dot at the appropriate lap number.
- Since we started having stages, most cautions at the spring Las Vegas race happen in the third stage.
- In 2018 and 2019, we had no cautions in the first or second stages.
- In the last four races, we had caution-free second stages.
But the 2022 spring Las Vegas race cautions fell mostly between the competition caution and the end of stage 2. Crew chiefs who set up their cars expecting long runs, especially early, were likely quite surprised.
We have the same strong points at Las Vegas as at Fontana.
We had the closest margin of victory in a spring Las Vegas race since 2006, when Jimmie Johnson edged out Matt Kenseth by 0.045 seconds.
Alex Bowman’s win this year is also the first time since 2015 that a driver starting out of the top 10 won a spring Las Vegas race.
And there we have your 2022 spring Las Vegas Race Report