TOP 10 TEAMS

TOP 10 TEAMS POST TALLADEGA

  1. TEAM PENSKE (LW #1)
  2. HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS (LW #2)
  3. JOE GIBBS RACING (LW #4)
  4. CHIP GANASSI RACING (LW #3)
  5. STEWART HAAS RACING (LW #5)
  1. RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING (LW #6)
  2. FURNITURE ROW RACING (LW #7)
  3. ROUSH FENWAY RACING (LW #8)
  4. MICHAEL WALTRIP RACING (LW #10)
  5. JTG RACING (LW #9)

These are the Top 10 Teams, Thursday look for our Top 30 drivers at Martinsville Speedway.

TOP TEN DRIVERS by TRACK TYPE

TOP 10: SHORT TRACK

  1. JEFF GORDON #24
  2. CLINT BOWYER #15
  3. MATT KENSETH #20
  4. JIMMIE JOHNSON #48
  5. DALE EARNHARDT JR. #88
  6. BRAD KESELOWSKI #2
  7. GREG BIFFLE #16
  8. JOEY LOGANO #22
  9. KEVIN HARVICK #4
  10. CARL EDWARDS #99

Top 10 drivers on Short tracks, Wednesday look for our Top 10 teams, Thursday look for our Top 30 rankings for Sunday’s TUMS FAST RELIEF 500 from Martinsville Speedway.

RACE PREVIEW

MAR 13.2

TUMS FAST RELIEF 500

Martinsville Speedway

October 26th, 2:00 PM ET, ESPN TV

.526 Mile, 12 Degrees of Banking

We are six races through the 10-Race Chase for the Cup. Hendrick Motorsports drivers #48 Jimmie Johnson, #88 Dale Earnhardt Jr, #5 Kasey Kahne  and #18 Kyle Busch have been eliminated from the Chase. Eight drivers move forward into the Eliminator round and are looking for a win that will lock them in to the championship race in Homestead. This is the last of the season’s six short track races. We know that short tracks bring on short tempers and with just four races to go in the season, the drivers are doing what they must to gather enough points to claim a successful season. We probably won’t see a lot of patience on the track – bump and run could be the phrase of the day, or worse yet, dump and run. Since Rusty Wallace won here in spring of 2004 in a Dodge, we have only seen two different manufacturers take the checkered flag – Chevrolet has had 16 wins and Toyota four. Chevy has won 80% of the races here in the last 10 years. Hendrick Motorsports accounts for 55% of those wins and their engine shop 70%. Will Jeff Gordon keep Hendrick Motorsports in Victory Lane? We’ll find out on Sunday.

Tuesday look for our Top 10 short track drivers.

TOP FIVE DRIVERS

GEICO 500:TALLADEGA

My #5 driver to watch has absolutely nothing to lose, #42 Kyle Larson. Kyle has only one Cup start where he finished 9th. His teammate is the defending champion of this race. Kyle is #3 hottest over the last six weeks. Do you mean he only has one cup start on this track? It sounds like he’s only raced one race. But then he couldn’t be #3 hottest over last six weeks. If you mean on the track put “on this track” after “start”.

The #4 driver to watch finished 5th here last year, #18 Kyle Busch. Kyle managed to avoid all the post-race extracurricular activities Saturday night and has been flying under the radar which is where he should be. Kyle rolls in in 5th hottest over the last six weeks. He has 19 starts, one win and four Top 5’s. Interestingly three of his four Top 5’s came in the last five races.

My #3 driver is watching his Championship chances slowly fade away, #88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. has an unbelievable 28 starts, five wins and nine Top 5’s. With just five races to go and sitting 26 points out of the transfer slot he needs a big week.

My #2 driver to watch has shaky stats here, #20 Matt Kenseth. In 29 starts Matt has only five Top 5’s. But he did get a win here in this race in 2012. I’m sure he is still pumped up about his multiple run-ins with the #2 car and since he is on the bubble of making the Top Eight to move on to the Eliminator round, he knows he needs the points. Finishing up front locks him in.

My #1 pick is the #1 driver in the garage right now, #2 Brad Keselowski. He is very happy to be here where he has two wins in just 11 starts with three Top 5 finishes. Brad is coming off a tough night at Charlotte and we know he isn’t concerned with making friends, he’s just focused on winning races. And that is the only way he stays in the Chase – with a win. He will try to forget that he finished 28th here earlier in the year.

 

Monday look for our preview of the Goodys Headache Relief Shot 500 from Martinsville Speedway.

 

TOP 30 DRIVERS

GEICO 500 from TALLADEGA

  1. BRAD KESELOWSKI #2
  2. MATT KENSETH #20
  3. DALE EARNHARDT JR #88
  4. KYLE BUSCH #18
  5. KYLE LARSON #42
  6. JEFF GORDON #24
  7. BRIAN VICKERS #55
  8. CLINT BOWYER #15
  9. MARTIN TRUEX #78
  10. GREG BIFFLE #16
  11. RICKY STENHOUSE #17
  12. AUSTIN DILION #3
  13. PAUL MENARD #27
  14. DENNY HAMLIN #11
  15. JIMMIE JOHNSON #48
  16. KEVIN HARVICK #4
  17. KASEY KAHNE #5
  18. ARIC ALMIROLA #43
  19. RYAN NEWMAN #31
  20. JAMIE MCMURRAY #1
  21. CARL EDWARDS #99
  22. DAVID RAGAN #34
  23. A. J. ALLMENDINGER #47
  24. JOEY LOGANO #22
  25. CASEY MEARS #13
  26. DAVID GILLILAND #38
  27. MARCOS AMBROSE #9
  28. TONY STEWART #14
  29. MICHAEL WALTRIP #66
  30. DANICA PATRICK #10

The TOP 30 drivers for Talladega Superspeedway, Friday look for our breakdown of the Top 5 drivers to watch.

TOP TEN TEAMS

TOP 10 TEAMS POST CHARLOTTE

  1. TEAM PENSKE (LW #1)
  2. HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS (LW #2)
  3. CHIP GANASSI RACING (LW #3)
  4. JOE GIBBS RACING (LW #4)
  5. STEWART HAAS RACING (LW #5)
  6. RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING (LW #6)
  7. FURNITURE ROW RACING (LW #9)
  8. ROUSH FENWAY RACING (LW #8)
  9. JTG RACING (LW #10)
  10. MICHAEL WALTRIP RACING (LW #9)

These are the Top 10 Teams, Thursday look for our Top30 drivers at Talladega.

TOP TEN DRIVERS by TRACK TYPE

TOP 10: RESTRICTOR PLATE TRACKS

  1. BRIAN VICKERS #55
  2. DALE EARNHARDT JR. #88
  3. GREG BIFFLE #16
  4. CLINT BOWYER #15
  5. BRAD KESELOWSI #2
  6. MATT KENSETH #20
  7. RICKY STENHOUSE #17
  8. DENNY HAMLIN #11
  9. PAUL MENARD #27
  10. KYLE BUSCH #18

Top 10 on Restrictor Plate tracks, Wednesday look for our Top 10 Teams, Thursday look for our Top 30 rankings for Sunday’s Good Sam 500 from Talladega Super Speedway.