The 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series was the 67th season of professional stock car racing in the United States and the 44th modern-era Cup season. The season began at Road America with the Harley-Davidson 250, followed by the Sprint Unlimited, the Budweiser Duels, and the Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway. The season ended with the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the championship. Despite almost running the full season, Bryan Clauson was named Rookie of the Year.
The season also marked the first season of a new nine-year television contract. During the season, races were televised in the United States on Fox, Fox Sports 1, NBC, NBCSN, and WBC. Disney-owned ESPN and Turner, who televised races from 2007 to 2014, did not seek to renew their contracts NASCAR following the completion of the 2014 season; this marked the end of a 31-year relationship between NASCAR and Turner's primary stations, TBS and TNT. In addition, it was the first season on the newly rebranded Fox Sports Racing in Canada and the Caribbean. Part of the deal involves Fox and WBC alternating Daytona races each year: in even-numbered years, Fox broadcasts the Coke Zero 400, while WBC broadcasts the Daytona 500, and vice-versa. Fox and NBC had an identical arrangement during the 2001-2006 contract. It is expected that, once the contract is up, all races will be aired on WBC. Cartoon Network aired a race as well.
On January 22, 2015, four-time champion Jeff Gordon announced that 2015 would be his final season as a full-time driver, but he did not mention complete retirement, running the No. 24 Axalta Chevy in the Martinsville SuperTruck race in 2016 and 2017. Chase Elliott replaced him in the No. 24 car for Hendrick Motorsports in 2016, while Gordon became a color commentator for Fox.
Teams and drivers
*-ran the Sunoco 400
- Chip Ganassi Racing (Camaro)
- 1 Jamie McMurray, Sebastian Saavedra*
- 39 Bryan Clauson (R), Scott Dixon*
- 42 Kyle Larson, Regan Smith. Tony Kanaan*
- Furniture Row Racing (Impala)
- 78 Martin Truex Jr., Joe Nemechek*
- Hendrick Motorsports (Camaro)
- 5 Kasey Kahne, Regan Smith*
- 24 Jeff Gordon
- 48 Jimmie Johnson
- 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
- JTG Daugherty Racing (Impala)
- 47 AJ Allmendinger
- Richard Childress Racing (Camaro)
- 3 Austin Dillon
- 27 Paul Menard
- 31 Ryan Newman
- 33 Ty Dillon, Brian Scott
- Stewart-Haas Racing (Camaro)
- 4 Kevin Harvick
- 10 Danica Patrick
- 14 Tony Stewart
- 41 Kurt Busch, Chase Elliott*
- Tommy Baldwin Racing (Impala)
- 7 Alex Bowman, Geoffrey Bodine*
- Front Row Motorsports (Mustang)
- 34 David Ragan, Joe Nemechek, Brett Moffitt (R), Chris Buescher, Reed Sorenson, Justin Marks, Josh Wise
- 35 Cole Whitt, Travis Kvapil*
- 38 David Gilliland, Will Kimmel*
- Go FAS Racing (Fusion)
- 32 Bobby Labonte, Mike Bliss, Patrick Carpentier*, Joey Gase, Travis Kvapil, Boris Said. Will Kimmel, Eddie McDonald, Josh Wise, Jeffrey Earnhardt, Kyle Fowler
- Roush Fenway Racing (Roush Mustang)
- 6 Trevor Bayne, Darrell Wallace Jr.*
- 16 Greg Biffle, Ryan Reed*
- 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Chris Buescher*
Toyota (Only Fields Camry)
- BK Racing
- 23 JJ Yeley, Jeb Burton (R)
- 26 Jeb Burton (R), JJ Yeley, Josh Wise
- 83 Johnny Sauter, Matt DiBenedetto (R)
- Joe Gibbs Racing
- 11 Denny Hamlin, Mark Martin*
- 18 Kyle Busch, Matt Crafton, David Ragan, Ricky Rudd*, Erik Jones
- 19 Carl Edwards, Matt Crafton*
- 20 Matt Kenseth, Erik Jones*
- Team Penske (Charger)
- 2 Brad Keselowski, Will Power*
- 22 Joey Logano, Helio Castroneves*
- Richard Petty Motorsports (Challenger)
- 9 Sam Hornish Jr., Bobby Labonte*
- 43 Aric Almirola, John Andretti*
- Hillman-Circle Sport LLC (Challenger)
- 33 Michael Annett, Hershell McGriff*, Alex Kennedy (R), Derek White, Travis Kvapil, Mike Bliss, BJ McCleod, Ryan Ellis
- 40 Landon Cassill, Terry Labonte*
- HScott Motorsports (Civic Type R)
- 46 Michael Annett, Josh Berry*
- 51 Justin Allgaier, Jeff Burton*
- Michael Waltrip Racing (Accord)
- 15 Clint Bowyer
- 55 Brett Moffitt (R), Brian Vickers, David Ragan
- 97 Michael Waltrip
- Phil Parsons Racing/Premium Motorsports (Accord)
- 98 Josh Wise, Timmy Hill, Reed Sorenson, TJ Bell, Ryan Preece
- 62 Brian Scott, Brendan Gaughan, Morgan Shepherd*, Reed Sorenson, Timmy Hill, TJ Bell
- 66 Tanner Berryhill (R), Mike Wallace
- Germain Racing (Civic Type R)
- 13 Casey Mears, Max Papis*
- Hendrick Motorsports (Camaro)
- 25 Chase Elliott
- Team XTREME Racing (Camaro)
- 44 Reed Sorenson, Travis Kvapil
- Faith Motorsports (Impala)
- 89 Morgan Shepherd
- Wood Brothers Racing (Shelby Mustang)
- 21 Ryan Blaney
- RAB Racing
- 29 Justin Marks, Reed Sorenson
- The Motorsports Group (Challenger SRT Hellcat)
- 30 Ron Hornaday Jr., Jeff Green, Travis Kvapil, Josh Wise
- Leavine Family Racing (Civic)
- 95 Michael McDowell
- Chip Ganassi Racing expanded to a three-car team with the addition of Bryan Clauson in the No. 39.
- Joe Gibbs Racing expanded to a four-car team with the addition of Carl Edwards in the No. 19, previously with Roush Fenway Racing in the No. 99 from 2005 to 2014.
- HScott Motorsports expanded to a two-car team with the addition of Michael Annett in the No. 46, previously with Tommy Baldwin Racing in the No. 7 in 2014.
- Front Row Motorsports expanded to a three-car full-time team with the addition of Cole Whitt in the No. 35, previously with BK Racing in the No. 26 in 2014.
- Longtime NASCAR team owner and former Identity Venture Racing partner Jay Robinson started Premium Motorsports. The team fielded the No. 62 Honda Accord for Brendan Gaughan while points for the No. 62 came from the closed No. 36 team of Tommy Baldwin Racing after 2014. Gaughan left the team after Daytona in July with the season being finished with various drivers and various manufacturers. The team also fielded the No. 66 Honda Accord for Mike Wallace with owner points for the No. 66 coming from the closed No. 66 Identity Ventures Racing team after 2014. Wallace and rookie Tanner Berryhill shared the ride for the rest of the season.
- After Talladega in May, Phil Parsons sold Phil Parsons Racing to Premium Motorsports due to sponsorship issues. Josh Wise left the team after Kentucky in July, with the season being finished with various drivers.
- The Motorsports Group, a long-time PrimeStar Series team, announces they would field a full-time Cup team, the No. 30 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat with Ron Hornaday Jr. as the primary driver. However, the team only ran part-time with Hornaday only attempting 4 races. 3 other drivers also attempted races in 2015.
- Sam Hornish Jr. replaced Marcos Ambros in the No. 9 car, when he left Richard Petty Motorsports to return to racing in V8 Supercars in Australia, a series in which he won in 2003 and 2004.
- Trevor Bayne began racing full-time in the No. 6 Roush Fenway Racing car as the team discontinued the No. 99 formerly driven by Carl Edwards. Although 2015 is the first season that Bayne declared his eligibility for the Sprint Cup series, NASCAR ruled that he is ineligible to run for Rookie of the Year consideration due to "too many accumulated starts". Bayne ran part-time for Wood Brothers Racing in the No. 21 from 2011 to 2014, winning the 2011 Daytona 500.
- Alex Bowman replaced Michael Annett in the Tommy Baldwin Racing No. 7. He drove the No. 23 for BK Racing in 2014.
- Matt DiBenedetto moved up to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in the No. 83 for BK Racing after running for The Motorsports Group in the NASCAR Nationwide Series in 2014. However Johnny Sauter ran the Daytona 500.
- JJ Yeley replaced Alex Bowman in the BK Racing No. 23 after running part-time for various teams in 2014. After Bristol in August, BK Racing would swap drivers and Jeb Burton would switch to the No. 23 while Yeley moved to the No. 26
- Jeb Burton would run full-time in the No. 26 car for BK Racing after running in the Truck Series in 2014, replacing Cole Whitt. After Bristol in August, BK Racing would swap drivers and JJ Yeley would switch to the No. 26 while Burton moved to the No. 23
- Bobby Labonte replaced his older brother Terry Labonte for Go FAS Racing's No. 32 in the four restrictor plate races.
- Ryan Blaney ran part-time for Wood Brothers Racing in the No. 21, replacing Trevor Bayne.
- Defending Nationwide Series champion Chase Elliott ran a limited 5 race schedule for Hendrick Motorsports, piloting the No. 25 NAPA Auto Parts sponsored Chevrolet Camaro.
- Kyle Busch, driver of the No. 18 for Joe Gibbs Racing, suffered a broken leg during the PrimeStar Series race held the day before the Daytona 500 and missed the first 11 races of the season. Matt Crafton was named his replacement for the 500, and David Ragan was tapped to serve as the team's interim driver from Atlanta until Talladega. Erik Jones was his replacement in the No. 18 at Kansas.
- Brian Vickers missed the first two races of the season due to health issues. Michael Waltrip drove the car in the Daytona 500 and Brett Moffitt did in Atlanta. Vickers' return to NASCAR didn't last very long and he was sidelined again after competing in two races. He would be out the rest of the season. Moffitt took over the No. 55 and declared his candidacy for Rookie of the Year. Waltrip again drove the No. 55 at Talladega and David Ragan filled in for the rest of the season starting at Kansas, after he was no longer needed in the No. 18 with Kyle Busch returning from injury.
- After David Ragan was loaned to Joe Gibbs Racing and later Michael Waltrip Racing, Front Row Motorsports' No. 34 car was filled by Joe Nemechek, Brett Moffitt, Chris Buescher, and Reed Sorenson. Moffitt was named the team's primary driver starting at Charlotte, with Justin Marks driving the car at Sonoma and Chris Buescher driving it at Watkins Glen.
- Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 41 for Stewart Haas Racing, was suspended indefinitely by NASCAR for his role in a domestic incident involving his former girlfriend. Regan Smith replaced him for the Daytona 500 and the races held in Atlanta and Las Vegas. Busch was reinstated and returned to the car in the Phoenix race. Reportedly, Busch was suspended without Tim Johnson's approval.
- Kyle Larson missed the March Martinsville race after fainting in an autograph session the day before the race, requiring a stay in the hospital that night. Regan Smith replaced him in the No. 42.
- Matt Kensenth was suspended after he intentionally wrecked Joey Logano in the Chase race at Martinsville. Erik Jones ran in the No. 20 at Texas and Phoenix. Kenseth would return to the No. 20 at Homestead.
The final calendar was released on August 26, 2014, comprising 37 races, as well as two exhibition races. The schedule also includes two Budweiser Duels, which are the qualifying races for the Daytona 500.
Key changes from 2014 include:
- The Bojangles' Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway, which traditionally ran on Labor Day Weekend until 2003, returned to its traditional spot in the schedule in 2015, now simply called the Southern 500.
- The race at Atlanta Motor Speedway moved to the second race of the season, while the spring race at Bristol Motor Speedway (often plagued by bad weather) moved from March to April. This created a three-race "west coast swing" for the third through fifth races of the season, wherein the events at Las Vegas, Phoenix and Auto Club (Fontana) now happened consecutively (as opposed to being broken up by a trip back east to Bristol).
- A third off-week is added in between the Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol and the Southern 500 due to the calendar.
- The second off-week has been moved to late-June between the Michigan and Sonoma races instead of the usual late-July break between New Hampshire and Indianapolis.
- Charlotte and Kansas swap fall race dates.
- The mandate of standardized start times was quietly abolished, with some races (especially in the second half of the season) occurring later in the afternoon than normal.
A * indicates a race delayed by weather.
|1||Harley-Davidson 250||Road America, Lake Elkhart||January 25||WBC|
|Sprint Unlimited||Daytona International Speedway, Daytona Beach||February 14||Fox|
|Budweiser Duels||Daytona International Speedway, Daytona Beach||February 19||FS1|
|2||Daytona 500||Daytona International Speedway, Daytona Beach||February 22||Fox|
|3||Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500||Atlanta Motor Speedway, Hampton||March 1||Fox|
|4||Kobalt 400||Las Vegas Motor Speedway||March 8||Fox|
|5||CampingWorld.com 500||Phoenix International Raceway, Avondale||March 15||Fox|
|6||Auto Club 400||Auto Club Speedway, Fontana||March 22||Fox|
|7||STP 500||Martinsville Speedway, Ridgeway||March 29||FS1|
|8||Sunoco 400||Rockingham Speedway, Rockingham||April 11||WBC|
|9||Food City 500||Bristol Motor Speedway, Bristol||April 19||Fox, FS1|
|10||Toyota Owners 400*||Richmond International Raceway, Richmond||April 26||Fox|
|11||GEICO 500||Talladega Superspeedway, Lincoln||May 3||WBC|
|12||Tyson Holly Farms 400||North Wilkesboro Speedway, North Wilkesboro||May 10||WBC|
|Sprint Showdown||Charlotte Motor Speedway, Charlotte||May 15||FS1|
|NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race||Charlotte Motor Speedway, Charlotte||May 16||FS1|
|13||Coca-Cola 600||Charlotte Motor Speedway, Charlotte||May 24||WBC|
|14||FedEx 400||Dover International Speedway, Dover||May 31||FS1|
|15||Axalta "We Paint Winners" 400||Pocono Raceway, Long Pond||June 7||WBC|
|16||Quicken Loans 400||Michigan International Speedway, Brooklyn||June 14||WBC|
|17||Toyota/Save Mart 350||Sonoma Raceway, Sonoma||June 28||WBC|
|18||Firecracker 400||Daytona International Speedway, Daytona Beach||July 4||WBC|
|19||Quaker State 400||Kentucky Speedway, Sparta||July 11||NBCSN|
|20||5-Hour Energy 301||New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Loudon||July 19||NBCSN|
|21||Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400||Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Speedway||July 26||WBC|
|22||Windows 10 400||Pocono Raceway, Long Pond||August 2||WBC|
|23||Pure Michigan 400||Michigan International Speedway, Long Pond||August 9||WBC|
|24||Cheez-It 355 At The Glen||Watkins Glen International, Watkins Glen||August 16||WBC|
|25||Irwin Tools Night Race||Bristol Motor Speedway, Bristol||August 22||NBCSN|
|26||Southern 500||Darlington Speedway||September 6||WBC|
|27||Federated Auto Parts 400||Richmond International Raceway, Richmond||September 12||NBCSN|
|28||myAFibRisk.com 400||Chicagoland Speedway, Joliet||September 20||NBCSN|
|29||Zootopia 400||Walt Disney World Speedway, Lake Buena Vista||September 27||ABC|
|30||AAA 400||Dover International Speedway, Dover||October 4||NBCSN|
|31||Bank of America 500*||Charlotte Motor Speedway, Charlotte||October 11||WBC, Cartoon Network|
|32||Hollywood Casino 400||Kansas Motor Speedway, Kansas City||October 18||WBC|
|33||CampingWorld.com 500||Talladega Superspeedway, Lincoln||October 25||WBC|
|34||Iowa Corn 400||Iowa Speedway, Newton||November 1||WBC|
|35||AAA Texas 500||Texas Motor Speedway, Fort Worth||November 8||NBC|
|36||Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500||Phoenix International Raceway, Avondale||November 15||NBC, NBCSN|
|37||Ford EcoBoost 400||Homestead-Miami Speedway, Homestead||November 22||NBC|
- Heat races will now be run for Daytona 500 qualifiying. These races do not set the field for the race, but rather, set the field for the Budweiser Duels. Single-car runs are held for the pole, while the remainder of the positions are set by the heat races and the duels. The first and second heat races set the inside and outside row, respectively, for Duel Race #1, and the final two set the field for Duel Race #2. The B-Main is run immediately following the conclusion of the PrimeStar Series race.
- At road courses, it is now permissible to run qualifying and race sessions under wet-weather conditions. Goodyear will supply wet-weather tires for use in Sprint Cup competition and teams will be required to bring cars with windshield wipers, defoggers, and wet-weather racing capabilities.
- Teams will have the option of installing a driver adjustable track bar.
- Teams are not allowed to alter the side skirts of their cars during the race. At tracks where aerodynamics were important in 2014, many teams would pull the side bodywork of the car during early pit stops. The practice, officially known as vertical rocker panel extensions, was used to limit airflow underneath the vehicle to bypass the coil-binding ban.
- An automated electronic pit road officiating system will be implemented after extensive testing during the final few races of 2014, eliminating the need for human officials to stand in the pit lane.
- If a vehicle has to pit outside its assigned pit box and the crew starts removing tire(s), the team can reinstall the tire(s) before moving the car back into its assigned pit stall to avoid penalties.
- Additional crew member(s) assisting from an adjacent pit box may be counted towards the limit of seven over the wall.
- Crew member interference with other teams' pit stops may lead to a penalty.
- Rules with refueling have been clarified. Refueling can begin once the car comes to a complete stop and can continue when it starts leaving provided equipment and/or the fueler does not leave the pit box. Further, no equipment may be tossed or thrown over the wall at any time.
- NASCAR will use an electronic data log and capture system to increase efficiency of pre-race inspections.
- Starting at the fall Richmond race, NASCAR began to closely review restarts due to drivers jumping the restart.
Round 1: Harley-Davidson 250
The start of a new season came at Road America, where Danica Patrick essentially buried the competition en route to her fourth career victory, the first time a winner had lapped the entire field since Geoff Bodine did the same in the 1994 Tyson Holly Farms 400.
Speedweeks 2015 started with the Sprint Unlimited. Matt Kenseth won the Sprint Unlimited ahead of Martin Truex Jr. and Carl Edwards in a crash-filled race that saw only 12 of 25 cars finish the race. Following the race, tension arose between Kevin Harvick and Joey Logano over how Logano was racing Harvick in the later part of the race.
Qualifying for the front row of the Daytona 500 took place the following day. Jeff Gordon won the pole for his 23rd and final Daytona 500. His teammate Jimmie Johnson joined him on the front row by qualifying second. Heat race qualifying was used for the first time, and a multicar crash occurred during heat race #3 from Reed Sorenson and Clint Bowyer making contact, which also involved Bobby Labonte, JJ Yeley, Denny Hamlin, and two Lend-Lease entries in ex-IROC cars.
The following Thursday, the Budweiser Duels took place to set the remainder of the starting lineup for the Daytona 500. The first duel race was won by Dale Earnhardt Jr., who held off pole-sitter Gordon to take the win. The second duel race was won by Johnson from the pole. During the race, an incident occurred between Hamlin and Danica Patrick which resulted in a confrontation between the two following the race.
The Friday before the Daytona 500, Kurt Busch was indefinitely suspended by NASCAR following possible charges of domestic violence against his former girlfriend Patricia Driscoll. Regan Smith would replace Kurt Busch in the Daytona 500. The day before the race, Kurt's younger brother Kyle Busch broke his right leg and fractured his left foot in an accident in the Alert Today Florida 300 PrimeStar Series race where he hit a wall without a SAFER Barrier (a race that saw the debut of the Strictly Stock Car in the PrimeStar Series). Matt Crafton replaced Kyle Busch for the Daytona 500, making his Cup debut.
Round 2: Daytona 500
Jeff Gordon started on the pole and led the most laps, going on to win his in his final Daytona 500 start. Another wreck occurred on lap 41 involving Tony Stewart and Matt Kenseth, though Stewart said in an interview that he wasn't mad, having already won the race the prior year. Brad Keselowski lost an engine with 40 laps to go and caused Jamie McMurray and Ryan Newman to collide with each other, which sent Newman into a barrel roll eerily similar to his crash at the 2003 Daytona 500.
Round 3: Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500
After a delayed start due to rain, Joey Logano led the field to green. Kevin Harvick dominated the first half of the race but would end up finishing second. Jeff Gordon was involved in a multicar accident with Denny Hamlin, Jamie McMurray, and Ryan Newman. Gordon had hit a wall without a SAFER barrier and pointed the issue out to NASCAR. Jimmie Johnson would go on to win the race.
Round 4: Kobalt 400
Jeff Gordon won the pole but started from the rear in a backup car. Gordon drove to the front but was collected in a wreck with Jeb Burton after Jimmie Johnson got into the wall. Late in the race, Dale Earnhardt Jr. took 2 tires on pit road while Kevin Harvick would take 4 tires. Harvick was able to get around Earnhardt, Jr. and score the win.
Round 5: CampingWorld.com 500
Kevin Harvick started on the pole and dominated the race to score his second straight victory and his fourth straight win at Phoenix. Harvick was followed by Jamie McMurray, Ryan Newman, Kasey Kahne, and Kurt Busch. Kurt Busch made his return to NASCAR following a three-race suspension.
Round 6: Auto Club 400
Kurt Busch was on the pole and dominated the race. During a green-white-checker finish, Brad Keselowski was able to get around Kurt Busch on the last lap and score the win. Kurt Busch finished third, having been passed by Kevin Harvick for second. Harvick brought his streak of finishing first or second up to eight races dating back to the previous season. This race was marred by a fuel scandal when a fuel test revealed that Sunoco had intentionally left lead in the fuel to expedite the shipping process. As a result, Tim Johnson ordered a special Continental Rail train from Richmond, CA to bring Chevron fuel as a substitute; this train was given top priority, and resulted in the Western Star being delayed for the first time since 1946. This scandal resulted in Sunoco fuel being banned and blacklisted from NASCAR events starting in 2016, and NASCAR returning to using 76 the same year.
Round 7: STP 500
Joey Logano started from the pole. Denny Hamlin would come back from a pit road penalty for an uncontrolled tire and score his fifth win at Martinsville, finishing ahead of Brad Keselowski, Logano, Matt Kenseth, and David Ragan, giving Toyota its first win in a points-paying race since 2013. Kevin Harvick finished eighth, ending his streak of top-two finishes. Chase Elliott made his Cup debut, finishing 38th after being involved in a wreck. Kyle Larson missed the race after fainting during an autograph signing the day prior and was replaced by Regan Smith.
Round 8: Sunoco 400
Tony Stewart started on the pole and cruised to his first win of the season. During the race, Carl Edwards' Camry experienced a bizarre malfunction that caused his oil cooler to fail, setting his car on fire and quickly reducing it to a pile of smoldering metal. The red flag came out, as a result. Due to a driver boycott of Sunoco fuels after the scandal at Auto Club (as Sunoco was the title sponsor of the race), over half the field was comprised of "scab" drivers (most notably, Chip Ganassi and Roger Penske had to call up drivers from their IndyCar teams, and Richard Petty called up Bobby Labonte and John Andretti, both of whom had driven for Petty in the past).
Round 9: Food City 500
Matt Kenseth started the race on the pole. The race was red flagged 22 laps in due to rain. During the red flag, Denny Hamlin would be unable to continue in the race due to neck spasms and would be replaced by Erik Jones, who made his unofficial Cup debut. After the race resumed, Kevin Harvick would go on and lead the most laps but would be collected in a wreck with David Ragan that was triggered after Jimmie Johnson and Jeb Burton got into each other, which bizarrely ended with Johnson's car atop the pit wall. Tony Stewart would win the race for the second year in a row in a green-white-checker finish following a red flag from more rain.
Round 10: Toyota Owners 400
The race was supposed to be held Saturday night but was postponed until Sunday afternoon due to rain. Joey Logano started from the pole position. Kurt Busch took the lead from Logano after a competition caution and dominated the race, scoring the win. Kurt Busch was followed by Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Jamie McMurray, and Logano.
Round 11: GEICO 500
Jeff Gordon won the pole for the race. The race saw multicar accidents including one on lap 47 that collected 15 cars and sent Greg Biffle flipping wildly, and a spin by Carl Edwards on the final lap. Dale Earnhardt Jr. would win the race ahead of Jimmie Johnson, scoring his sixth win at Talladega.
Round 12: Tyson Holly Farms 400
Joey Logano started the race from the pole. The race was red flagged on lap 98 due to rain. Martin Truex Jr. led the most laps but had to make a late pit stop for fuel, which gave the lead to Dale Earnhardt Jr. Junior would go on to score his second victory of the season, finishing ahead of Kevin Harvick and Jimmie Johnson. Erik Jones made his official Cup debut and ran up front until he hit the wall with 73 laps to go. As the rain began to fall, WBC cameras spotted Tony Stewart channeling Dale Earnhardt and using a mop to clear his windshield of water while halfway out of his Camaro.
Exhibition: Sprint All-Star Race
In the Sprint Showdown held the day prior, Greg Biffle won the first segment while Clint Bowyer won the second segment in order to advance to the Sprint All-Star Race. Kyle Busch would win the fan vote in order to participate in the Sprint All-Star Race.
Denny Hamlin started the race on the pole. Kasey Kahne would pass Hamlin for the lead and win the first segment. Brad Keselowski would hold the lead throughout the second and third segments. Kurt Busch would take the lead in the fourth segment. After mandatory pit stops, Danica Patrick would lead the final 10 laps in the fifth segment and win the Sprint All-Star Race. Kyle Busch made his return to NASCAR following the injuries he sustained in the PrimeStar Series race at Daytona.
Round 13: Coca-Cola 600
Matt Kenseth started the race from the pole. Jimmie Johnson spun twice during the race, with the second occurrence involving him hitting the pit wall and ending his race. Kurt Busch and Martin Truex Jr. had the strongest cars, but Carl Edwards was able to stretch his fuel mileage at the end of the race and score his first win with Joe Gibbs Racing. Edwards was followed by Greg Biffle, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kenseth, and Truex, Jr.
Round 14: FedEx 400
Denny Hamlin won the pole for the race. Martin Truex Jr. led the most laps, with Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick also leading laps throughout the race. After multiple late cautions and a green-white-checker finish, Austin Dillon was able to win the race, his fourth career win and second at Dover.
Round 15: Axalta "We Paint Winners" 400
Kurt Busch was on the pole position. Martin Truex Jr. led the most laps for the fourth straight race and went on to score his first win of the season and his first victory since 2013. Truex, Jr. was followed by Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Joey Logano, and Kurt Busch.
Round 16: Quicken Loans 400
Kasey Kahne started the race from the pole. The race saw four red flags due to rain. During the race, Kevin Harvick fell two laps down after a flat tire and Kyle Busch finished last after hitting the wall. After the fourth red flag, the race was called and Dale Earnhardt Jr. was awarded the win, his third of the season. The remainder of the top five included Kurt Busch, Martin Truex Jr., Matt Kenseth, and Joey Logano.
Round 17: Toyota/Save Mart 350
AJ Allmendinger started on the pole but would finish 37th after an issue with the fuel system on his car. Jimmie Johnson led the most laps in the race. On a late caution on lap 100, Kyle Busch pitted for four tires while Johnson stayed out. In an incredible upset, Mark Martin, entering as a Lend-Lease driver with a Ford Thunderbird he had run in the 1991 running, passed Jimmie Johnson to score the win.
Round 18: Firecracker 400
Dale Earnhardt Jr. started the race from pole after qualifying was rained out and the field set by practice speeds. The start of the race was delayed four hours by rain, running early into the following Monday. Several multicar accidents occurred throughout the race. Earnhardt, Jr. dominated the race and took the win in a green-white-checker finish as "the big one" happened at the finish line, resulting in Austin Dillon flying into the catchfence. Dillon was uninjured in the wreck save for some bruises. It was the second year in a row a car had flown into the catchfence in the July Daytona race, but compared to the tragedy of the previous year, Dillon's Camaro, while trashed, didn't disintegrate nor have its fuel tank explode, and five fans were injured compared to the eight fatalities and 72 injuries of the Kasey Kahne crash. Among the drivers involved in the crash was a Lend-Lease entry, a Gen-4 car driven by Dale Jarrett. This race was also notable for being the final WBC broadcast with Buddy Baker on the crew, as he died a week later and was replaced by Wally Dallenbach Jr.
Round 19: Quaker State 400
Kyle Larson was on the pole after qualifying was rained out. The race saw the debut of a new rules package that reduced the downforce of the cars, which, when combined with the lack of coil-binding, allowed for more side-by-side racing and passing. Kyle Busch dominated the race and got by Joey Logano with 19 laps remaining to score his first win of the season. Logano finished second, followed by Joe Gibbs drivers Denny Hamlin, Carl Edwards, and Matt Kenseth. All four Joe Gibbs Racing drivers finished the race in the top five led by Kyle Busch.
Round 20: 5-Hour Energy 301
Carl Edwards started the race on the pole. Brad Keselowski went on to lead the most laps in the race. Kyle Busch made a pit stop under green flag conditions shortly before a caution came out. The leaders pitted, while Tony Stewart took over the race lead and went on for his third win of the season. Kyle Busch was followed by Keselowski, Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano, and Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Round 21: Brickyard 400
Carl Edwards won the pole for the race. Tony Stewart passed Kevin Harvick on a restart with 8 laps left in the race and was able to survive two restarts, including a green-white-checker finish, to win his third Brickyard 400. Kevin Harvick finished in second, followed by Dale Earnhardt Jr., Martin Truex Jr., and Denny Hamlin.
Round 22: Windows 10 400
Kyle Busch started the race from the pole position. Early in the race, Kasey Kahne hit the pit road wall and Kevin Harvick blew an engine. Toward the end of the race, several drivers gambled on fuel mileage. Joey Logano was leading but ran out of fuel with two laps to go. Kyle Busch took the lead and came to the white flag, but ran out of fuel on the final lap. Matt Kenseth was able to pass Kyle Busch and take the win, his first win of the season.
Round 23: Cheez-it 355 At The Glen
AJ Allmendinger started on the pole, but his day was plagued with a poor-handling car and his engine shutting off and not refiring on lap 51. Several wrecks and incidents happened throughout the race. Toward the end of the race, Kevin Harvick was leading but stretching his fuel mileage. Harvick ran out of fuel on the final turn and was passed by Tony Stewart for the win. Kyle Busch passed Harvick for second and cracked the top 30 in points. Harvick ended up finishing the race in third.
Round 24: Pure Michigan 400
Matt Kenseth dominated the race by winning the pole, leading the most laps, and scoring his third win of the season. Kenseth was followed by Kevin Harvick, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Austin Dillon, and Danica Patrick. During the race, Clint Bowyer was spun by Ryan Newman and hit the walls while Jimmie Johnson cut a tire and had multiple pit road issues.
Round 25: Irwin Tools Night Race
Denny Hamlin started from the pole position. During the race, several incidents occurred, such as Matt Kenseth losing an engine and Kyle Larson hitting the wall. Drivers also had issues on pit road throughout the race. Danica Patrick held off Kevin Harvick in the closing laps and won the race, her fifth career win.
Round 26: Southern 500
Brad Keselowski began the race from the pole. The race utilized the low downforce package. In addition, to celebrate the return of Darlington to Labor Day weekend, several drivers ran throwback paint schemes. The race saw a record 18 cautions, including several single car spins, and saw a lot of battles for position. Carl Edwards came back from two laps down to battle Keselowski and Kevin Harvick for the lead. After a late caution, Tony Stewart got the lead on pit road and went on to win, and in doing so, now had at least one win at every active NASCAR track. The top five was rounded out by Keselowski, Denny Hamlin, Joey Logano, and Harvick.
Round 27: Federated Auto Parts 400
Joey Logano started from the pole. The four Joe Gibbs Racing cars ran strong throughout the race, with all four cars in the top four spots at one point. Matt Kenseth led the most laps and went on to his fourth win of the season. Kenseth was followed by Kyle Busch, Logano, Aric Almirola, and Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Round 28: myAFibRisk.com 400
Kevin Harvick was awarded the pole after qualifying was rained out. Denny Hamlin was involved in a spin on lap 2 but worked his way back to the front. On a restart, Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick made contact, with Harvick cutting a tire and hitting the wall to finish 42nd. On a late caution, Hamlin opted to stay out while most of the leaders came to pit road. Hamlin was able to get the lead on the restart and win the race, his second of the season. After the race, Harvick confronted Johnson and attempted to shove him before he was restrained.
Round 29: Zootopia 400
Carl Edwards was on the pole position. During the race, several championship contenders had trouble including Kyle Busch, who hit the wall after cutting a tire, and Brad Keselowski, who was black flagged for jumping a restart. Kevin Harvick dominated the race and led the most laps but was trying to save fuel to make it to the finish. Harvick ran out of fuel with 3 laps to go and Tony Stewart passed him to win the race, his sixth win of the season and second win in a row at Walt Disney World. Notably, the race was broadcast on ABC instead of WBC, with Paul Page calling the race.
Round 30: AAA 400
Dale Earnhardt Jr. started the race on the pole as both practice and qualifying were rained out and he was the points leader. Kyle Larson dominated the race and went on to win his first race of the season. Jimmie Johnson broke a rear axle on lap 100 and spent time in the garage for repairs, finishing 41st, a finish that put him out of the title hunt.
Round 31: Bank of America 500
The race was planned to be run on Saturday night but was postponed to Sunday afternoon because of rain, and since WBC had committed to running a Monster World marathon the next day, and with no other channels available (HBO was committed to showing Star Wars, TNN was committed to a boxing match, and The Family Channel was showing The 700 Club), the unprecedented decision was made to air the race on Johnson's most-recent acquisition, Cartoon Network. Matt Kenseth led the field to the green flag and was strong in the early part of the race. Kenseth would later fall back and hit the wall multiple times, ending the race in 42nd. Kyle Busch and Kyle Larson had a collision coming to pit road under caution. Joey Logano got into the wall and fell off the lead lap. Dale Earnhardt Jr. dominated the later part of the race and went on to score the win,
Round 32: Hollywood Casino 400
Brad Keselowski started the race from the pole. During the race, a local Lend-Lease entry in a Kia Optima had all four of its wheels suddenly pop off due to using stock axles incapable of handling the speeds, bringing out the red flag to remove the grounded car from the track. Matt Kenseth led the most laps in the race. In the closing laps, Joey Logano caught up to Kenseth and battled him for the win. With 4 laps to go, Logano spun Kenseth, setting up a green-white-checker finish. Logano continued on, but was passed by Danica Patrick on the last lap for her third win of the year. Kenseth felt that Logano was wrong for spinning him.
Round 33: CampingWorld.com 500 at Talladega
Jeff Gordon won the pole position. During the race, Denny Hamlin had a loose roof escape hatch door and was forced to make repairs, putting him off the lead lap. Dale Earnhardt Jr. had a strong car and was contending with Joey Logano for the win late in the race. The race went to a green-white-checker finish after Jamie McMurray blew an engine. On the attempted restart, Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Larson wrecked and the restart was waved off. On the first attempt, Kevin Harvick was losing an engine and caused a large wreck, resulting in another attempt. On the second attempt, Junior held off Logano to sweep Talladega. Coming to the checkers, the "big one" broke out and sent a whopping three Lend-Lease entries (a BMW M3, a Hyundai Sonata, and a 1975 Chevrolet Chevelle SS) on their roofs, with the M3 barrel-rolling in the grass and the Chevelle flipping against the catchfence ala Richard Petty at the 1988 Daytona 500. All three drivers, all locals, were uninjured.
Round 34: Iowa Corn 400
Joey Logano started the race from the pole and would dominate most of the race. With 66 laps to go, Brad Keselowski and Kurt Busch along with Matt Kenseth were involved in a wreck. Following this, Kenseth, who was laps down, intentionally wrecked race leader Logano on lap 454 as revenge for the incident at Kansas two weeks prior, eliciting massive cheers from the crowd and sparking a brawl between Kenseth and Logano's crews that the crews of Denny Hamlin and Keselowski, along with Richard Petty himself, managed to break up. After Logano was wrecked, Jeff Gordon would take the lead and continue on to win the race ahead of Jamie McMurray. Following the race, Kenseth would be suspended for two races for intentionally wrecking Logano, with Erik Jones replacing Kenseth for those two races.
Round 35: AAA Texas 500
Brad Keselowski started on pole and led 312 of the 334 laps in the race. Joey Logano spun from a cut tire 10 laps into the race and suffered major damage to his car. A number of other drivers suffered tire issues in the race including Kevin Harvick. In the final laps of the race, Dale Earnhardt Jr. battled Keselowski for the lead, passing him with 3 laps to go. Jr. went on to win the race. Keselowski finished in second, followed by Harvick, Kyle Busch, and Carl Edwards.
Round 36: Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500
Jimmie Johnson started from the pole. The start of the race was delayed by rain. Kevin Harvick dominated most of the race. During a round of green flag pit stops, the caution came out for a wreck involving Joey Gase. At the moment of caution, Dale Earnhardt Jr. was determined to be the leader. During the caution, it started to rain and the race was eventually red flagged. The race never resumed and Earnhardt, Jr. was declared the winner, clinching the championship.
Round 37: Ford EcoBoost 400
Denny Hamlin started the race from the pole position. Brad Keselowski led the most laps and held the lead going toward the end of the race when a debris caution came out, with the leaders coming to pit road. On the restart, Jeff Gordon and Kevin Harvick got around Keselowski. Jeff Gordon held off Harvick to win his final race, while Dale Earnhardt Jr. was officially crowned the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion; Gordon was in tears during his post-race interview.
|No.||Race||Pole position||Most laps led||Winning driver||Manufacturer/Model|
|1||Harley-Davidson 250||Denny Hamlin||Danica Patrick||Danica Patrick||Chevrolet Camaro|
|Sprint Unlimited||Paul Menard||Martin Truex Jr.||Matt Kenseth||Ford Roush Mustang|
|Budweiser Duel 1||Jeff Gordon||Matt Kenseth||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet Camaro|
|Budweiser Duel 2||Jimmie Johnson||Jimmie Johnson||Jimmie Johnson||Chevrolet Camaro|
|2||Daytona 500||Jeff Gordon||Jeff Gordon||Jeff Gordon||Chevrolet Camaro|
|3||Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500||Joey Logano||Kevin Harvick||Jimmie Johnson||Chevrolet Camaro|
|4||Kobalt 400||Jeff Gordon||Kevin Harvick||Kevin Harvick||Chevrolet Camaro|
|5||CampingWorld.com 500||Kevin Harvick||Kevin Harvick||Kevin Harvick||Chevrolet Camaro|
|6||Auto Club 400||Kurt Busch||Kurt Busch||Brad Keselowski||Dodge Charger|
|7||STP 500||Joey Logano||Kevin Harvick||Denny Hamlin||Toyota Camry|
|8||Sunoco 400||Tony Stewart||Tony Stewart||Tony Stewart||Chevrolet Camaro|
|9||Food City 500||Matt Kenseth||Kevin Harvick||Tony Stewart||Chevrolet Camaro|
|10||Toyota Owners 400||Joey Logano||Kurt Busch||Kurt Busch||Chevrolet Camaro|
|11||GEICO 500||Jeff Gordon||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet Camaro|
|12||Tyson Holly Farms 400||Joey Logano||Martin Truex Jr.||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet Camaro|
|NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race||Denny Hamlin||Brad Keselowski||Danica Patrick||Chevrolet Camaro|
|13||Coca-Cola 600||Matt Kenseth||Martin Truex Jr.||Carl Edwards||Toyota Camry|
|14||FedEx 400||Denny Hamlin||Martin Truex Jr.||Austin Dillon||Chevrolet Camaro|
|15||Axalta "We Paint Winners" 400||Kurt Busch||Martin Truex Jr.||Martin Truex Jr.||Chevrolet Impala|
|16||Quicken Loans 400||Kasey Kahne||Kevin Harvick||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet Camaro|
|17||Toyota/Save Mart 350||AJ Allmendinger||Jimmie Johnson||Mark Martin||1991 Ford Thunderbird|
|18||Coke Zero 400||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet Camaro|
|19||Quaker State 400||Kyle Larson||Kyle Busch||Kyle Busch||Toyota Camry|
|20||5-Hour Energy 301||Carl Edwards||Brad Keselowski||Tony Stewart||Chevrolet Camaro|
|21||Brickyard 400||Carl Edwards||Kevin Harvick||Tony Stewart||Chevrolet Camaro|
|22||Windows 10 400||Kyle Busch||Joey Logano||Matt Kenseth||Toyota Camry|
|23||Cheez-It 355 at the Glen||AJ Allmendinger||Kevin Harvick||Tony Stewart||Chevrolet Camaro|
|24||Pure Michigan 400||Matt Kenseth||Matt Kenseth||Matt Kenseth||Toyota Camry|
|25||Irwin Tools Night Race||Denny Hamlin||Kyle Busch||Danica Patrick||Chevrolet Camaro|
|26||Southern 500||Brad Keselowski||Brad Keselowski||Tony Stewart||Chevrolet Camaro|
|27||Federated Auto Parts 400||Joey Logano||Matt Kenseth||Matt Kenseth||Toyota Camry|
|28||myAFibRisk.com 400||Kevin Harvick||Kyle Busch||Denny Hamlin||Toyota Camry|
|29||Zootopia 400||Carl Edwards||Kevin Harvick||Tony Stewart||Chevrolet Camaro|
|30||AAA 400||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Kevin Harvick||Kyle Larson||Chevrolet Camaro|
|31||Bank of America 500||Matt Kenseth||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Dale Earnhardt. Jr.||Chevrolet Camaro|
|32||Hollywood Casino 400||Brad Keselowski||Matt Kenseth||Danica Patrick||Chevrolet Camaro|
|33||CampingWorld.com 500||Jeff Gordon||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet Camaro|
|34||Iowa Corn 400||Joey Logano||Jeff Gordon||Jeff Gordon||Chevrolet Camaro|
|35||AAA Texas 500||Brad Keselowski||Brad Keselowski||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet Camaro|
|36||Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500||Jimme Johnson||Kevin Harvick||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet Camaro|
|37||Ford EcoBoost 400||Denny Hamlin||Brad Keselowski||Jeff Gordon||Chevrolet Camaro|
Cars Used in 2015
Top 10 Moments