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Each week during the 2023 season we are tracking the number of commercials shown during each NASCAR Cup Series race broadcast, breaking it down by total number of commercial breaks, including side-by-sides, total commercials, total amount of time spent in a commercial break, and total green-flag laps missed by the television viewing audience. 

The Food City Dirt Race at Bristol Motor Speedway begins and so do the cautions

NASCAR Cup Series Food City Dirt Race
Kyle Larson and Kyle Busch lead the field during the NASCAR Cup Series Food City Dirt Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on April 09, 2023. | Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images

It was a late start on Easter Sunday and the green flag for the Food City Dirt Race at Bristol Motor Speedway waved at 7:18 ET. The first commercial break from the half-mile track occurred on Lap 11 when a caution came out for a Bubba Wallace spin that collected other cars including Joey Logano. It was the first of many on the night.

That break included eight commercials and lasted for 2:30, but it wasn’t the only one. Fox aired a second set of spots during the same stoppage, which included six ads for a total of 2:15. 

With drivers regularly losing control of their cars on the dirt and bringing out cautions, the network had plenty opportunities to run commercials. And they did. 

In that first stage, including the stage break and its traditional two sets of commercials, fans watched a total of six breaks with 43 commercials that lasted for 14:45. Interestingly, with so many cautions, there were no green-flag laps missed. That would be a theme for the night.

Stage 2 features lighter commercial load than normal

With cautions on the regular, Fox had a chance to incorporate their commercials during the stoppages in action and front-loaded a lot of them in that first stage. That meant there were just three commercial breaks during the second stage, and, unsurprisingly, all of them came during yellow flags. 

In the end, Stage 2 featured five breaks (two at the end of the stage), which included 34 commercials and aired for 13:50. Definitely a lighter load as a result of all the cautions. 

Again, fans watching at home didn’t miss any green-flag laps.  

Race concludes with fans not missing a single green-flag lap

With so many commercials aired early in the broadcast, Fox had the opportunity to change it up in the final stage. And they did. All four breaks aired during that segment were side-by-sides. That, combined with all the commercials airing during yellow flags, fans didn’t miss a single green-flag lap in the entire race.

In that last stage, which included two breaks during green-flag action, fans watched 27 commercials that ran for 10:35. 

Final numbers 

Total Time of Race (Green to Checkered)2 Hours 40 Minutes
Total Commercial Breaks (Side-By-Sides)15 (4)
Total Commercials104
Total Time of Commercials39:20 (24.58% of race broadcast)
Total Laps Missed by Viewing Audience***0 green-flag laps***

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