There is no question that Brad Keselowski had the best car yesterday, of drivers in or not in The Chase. Jeff Gordon and Kyle Larson were not far behind, but they were behind the 2 car. Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick, and Dale Earnhardt Jr. also had good cars.
Once again, the Roush Fenway Racing cars showed nothing. I had Carl Edwards advancing to the second round of The Chase, but know I wonder if he will make it. In my delirium I woke up this morning with a picture in mind of RFR-picture a row boat on Lake Lloyd, the lake inside Daytona Speedway. The name painted on the side of the boat is Roush. You can see a huge geyser rising from a hole in the bottom of the boat, flooding the boat. Jack Roush, Greg Biffle, and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. are all trying to bail the rising water-each is using a teaspoon to bail. At the other side of the boat is Carl Edwards looking like a big rat, getting ready to jump ship. On the shore is Jimmy Fennig, the Edwards’ crew chief “consulting,” telling Roush and Biffle and Stenhouse they need to go faster.
RFR really has some big problems. I don’t know if the number of problems totals 99 or not-yes, I did mean that as a pun-but they are far, far from the Penske and Hendrick teams, and are behind Joe Gibbs Racing too.
Thoughts about the race:
-the last 30 laps had some of the best NASCAR racing in years. Racing three wide for the lead, with the winner splitting two other cars was exciting, even if I am not a Keselowski fan. Jeff Gordon and young Kyle Larson battling for second place was just as exciting.
-the number of mistakes made by Chase drivers and crews was astounding. Most were “little” mistakes and most were overcome, but Logano, Keselowski, Harvick, Johnson, Kurt Busch, Kenseth, and Ryan Newman all had problems. Aric Amirola’s blown engine was no little problem, and it will take a miracle for him to advance to round two of The Chase.
-I called them little mistakes, but both Busch and Kenseth spun out trying to slow down to get on pit row. Busch compounded his problem by knocking down the commit cone and getting a drive through penalty. Keselowski and Harvick had loose lug nuts. Johnson’s rear tire changer slipped, and then tripped over the gas man. Newman had a blown tire, and on a restart Logano simply did not go, dropping back several positions.
-The Chase drivers live in glass houses for the remainder of the season, and even the tiniest of errors are going to be shown on TV.
-Yes, I am picking on RFR again, but the Ganassi cars of Kyle Larson and Jamie McMurray had far more TV time than Edwards or Biffle, and neither Ganassi car is in The Chase. Larson is going to be a star in the future and is 53 points ahead of Austin Dillon in the battle for Sprint Cup Rookie of the Year. Yes, I am rooting for Larson.
-Did Stenhouse really bump Danica Patrick into the wall? Apparently the two were racing three wide with Tony Stewart and did hit. Patrick’s spotter took the blame for that incident. Still, how does that play out on the couple’s flight home? Patrick did say they talked after the race and “were fine.”
I am not sure any Chase race can live up to the hype, but though my expectations were rather low for the Chicago race, the race far surpassed what I hoped for. One race does not make a Chase, but it was a nice start.
Thanks for stopping by.