Has everyone heard enough about Brad and Carl?? I have for sure. Let’s take a look at how the season has started off and talk about some of the possibilities of what will/can be.
After 4 Races there have been many issues that have already surfaced. NASCAR has changes in the works and some of the changes they have made have not impressed me. The Wing being removed and replaced with a Spoiler especially a month before Talladega, where it has been the biggest issue seems to be the first smart move Mr. France has made in quite some time. The 3 restarts is a total joke to me, If the leader makes it back to the line and receives the White Flag the Race is done, so why 3 shots at a Green Flag Finish, when technically you can win under yellow? The wave around is just plain old stupid. A driver mired 2-3 laps down for say 100+ laps can get back on the Lead Lap during any late Race Cautions by not pitting. Even worse, half the field can come from multiple laps down. Even better, a guy who has been in the top 10 all day could finish behind these guys if there is a late Race pileup. Sorry guys and girls, I see no need to reward poor performance and allow more than one driver a Lucky Dog.
I guess I could ramble on about the debacle at Daytona, but that horse has been dead for some time, along with the issue that has me writing this blog. I do suggest Mr. France makes the SUPERBOWL of NASCAR , SUPER before it loses all of its luster. I will focus on what has happened and what may unfold as the Season continues.
Many teams are trying to work things out as they either have new drivers, Crew Chiefs, or pit crew members. The Top 12 have many of the usual suspects, or at least most of the guys many fans and experts alike expect to vie for those coveted spots. The other drivers considered contenders are hovering just outside those spots, most notably Dale Jr., Kasey Kahne, and Kyle Busch. There are two major surprises as far as I think. They would be Paul Menard and Scott Speed. I don’t think many folks saw that coming. Another surprise is JGR Driver and reigning ROTY Joey Logano right in the mix, ahead of both of his teammates.
The resurgence of RCR has Kevin “Happy” Harvick in the points lead, with top 10’s in all four races. His teammates Clint Bowyer and Jeff Burton, are 5th and 6th respectively, just 106 points out of the top spot. Also with Dale Jr. lurking, we may just be looking at 1/3 of the Chase spots going to HMS. The 6 drivers who were Chase Drivers last year that are currently not in any of those spots are Kasey Kahne, Denny Hamlin, Juan Pablo Montoya, Brian Vickers, Ryan Newman, and Carl Edwards. I really don’t expect Newman and Vickers to repeat as Chase Drivers but anything can happen. The ones that are currently in that were not Chase Drivers including the 5 I have mentioned above is Matt Kenseth, who by just missing the Chase last year leaves Jimmie Johnson as the only NASCAR Driver to make every single Chase. I see Menard and Speed dropping and Dale Jr., Kasey Kahne, and Kyle Busch fighting for those 2 spots. Just don’t count out Denny Hamlin and Juan Pablo Montoya, and some of the others in the top 25 currently. I am sure we all have an opinion of who those Drivers are.
This week being an off week everybody has time to catch their breath and relax a little. Come back fresh and focus on what they need to do to push their teams to make that Chase. With Bristol and Martinsville, two short tracks coming up and 4 guys within 5 points of each other for that Top 35 position which, as we know will guarantee a starting spot to those cars for the rest of the season, I am expecting some serious beating and banging these next two weeks. Wwith Spring (Easter) Break right after those track, and add in the Spoiler , a West to East swing , and Talladega a little over a Month away, It looks like we have and will have plenty to talk about.
This Season will surely get more interesting as it goes on. The cars that normally end the Season in the top 20 are so close that any minor mistakes can cause you to miss out on the championship hunt. The heat of the Summer and no more off weeks after Easter until mid July should have the tempers flaring. It may just kick off the Silly Season early again. I am feeling excited that we may see some of the old racing again. Well I can DREAM can’t I?
What do you guys think?