Four races to go before we lock in our Chase contenders, and ten look good to stay there after Michigan. It is not as clear for both Greg Biffle and Mark Martin who remain on shaky ground. Biffle’s record over the past ten events is only 17th best, not good for one seeking some distance. Martin is only ten to the good over Clint Bowyer coming into this Sunday, with the elder statesman not exactly burning up the track either as of late.
In fact, some boys still seeking a place at the post-season table have been picking them up and laying them down in recent weeks. Kasey Kahne has more than 130 points to make up, but he has been averaging 127 points per race over the past ten. There is still time to get back up there, but barely. David Reutimann, and Jamie McMurray also appear to be not going down without a fight. How they fare on the weekend could go a long way in determining how their stories will end.
Kevin Harvick leads the season standings, but Tony Stewart remains the one who has done the most lately. New daddy Jeff Gordon rounds out the triumvirate of drivers who seem to be peaking at about the right time. For them, wins are the thing, bonus points for which both Jimmie Johnson and Denny Hamlin already have as they limp toward the final round.
Here is a look at our Top 20 drivers over the past ten events.
1 (1) Tony Stewart – 1468 pts
Has big mo, now needs a few big wins
2 (2) Kevin Harvick – 1442 pts
It appears this Bud will be for you, Mr. Harvick
3 (3) Jeff Gordon – 1420 pts
Putting off young Leo’s driving lessons until September
4 (7) Kurt Busch – 1361 pts
When Rusty drove the Blue Deux I didn’t need the mute button
5 (6) Carl Edwards – 1334 pts
One of just six who actually contended at the Glen
6 (4) Jeff Burton – 1326 pts
Got beating and banging with Kyle, but Jimmie paid the price
7 (11) Kasey Kahne – 1271 pts
Does he have enough time to climb all the way back?
8 (5) Denny Hamlin – 1254 pts
Went eyeball to eyeball with Jimmie and stopped fast.
9 (8) Jimmie Johnson – 1245 pts
Was looking for a break through, but that wall wasn’t it
10 (9) Clint Bowyer – 1239 pts
Had an achy breaky part
11 (10) David Reutimann – 1213 pts
Wins just two more and he’d be tied with his boss
12 (20) Jamie McMurray – 1201 pts
The Glen was good, but still too many bad and ugly this season
13 (16) A.J. Allmendinger – 1185 pts
The iconic #43 could be on its way back…next year.
14 (13) Kyle Busch – 1167 pts
Good to make the Chase, but not much good at the moment.
15 (15) Mark Martin – 1166 pts
Ten points isn’t much, but he’ll take it.
16 (14) Matt Kenseth – 1164 pts
Darn roadrunner put rocks in his parachute again
17 (12) Greg Biffle – 1162 pts
His date in the Chase could still wind up with someone else
18 (16) Ryan Newman – 1154 pts
Just needs one good race, but four more would be better
19 (19) Dale Earnhardt Jr – 1129 pts
Hope springs eternal, at least until time runs out
20 (21) Paul Menard – 1124 pts
After the adoption, I’ll be known as Ron Menard and own this site