The Frontstretch: Frontstretch Sprint Cup Power Rankings: After the Bud Shootout by Mike Neff -- Tuesday February 12, 2008

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Editor’s Note : In our ongoing quest to make our site bigger and better, Frontstretch is proud to expand our power rankings to a full website feature. We do our rankings similar to the Associated Press for Basketball and Football … each staff member that votes ranks the drivers on a 20-19-18-17-16-15-14…3-2-1 basis, with the first place driver scoring 20 points, second place 19, etc. Then, Senior Writer Mike Neff compiles the votes, adds some one-liners, and — voila! — you have a full-cooked recipe of power ranking delight.

So, without further ado … here’s our latest edition …

2008 Frontstretch Power Rankings For February 13th, 2008
Rank Driver Votes Previous Rk
1 Jimmie Johnson (7) 159 2
Follows up his championship with a pole in the 500; this team doesn’t miss a beat.
2 Jeff Gordon (1) 152 1
Here’s a little known fact — Jimmie Johnson’s not the only one chasing Cale Yarborough. A Jeff Gordon victory Sunday ties him with Yarborough with four career Daytona 500 victories … only Richard Petty has more.
3 Tony Stewart 136 3
Sampson has nothing on Smoke.
4 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. 124 5
The Bud Shootout does not a Daytona 500 make. Two more laps, and Jimmie Johnson wins that race…
5 Matt Kenseth 121 4
In every interview we’ve seen him in so far, Kenseth looks a little constipated. We’re not sure what this means quite yet … but I guess we’ll figure out soon enough!
6 Carl Edwards 105 6
Expect a gentler, kinder Edwards to focus energy on racing rather than at his teammates, resulting in a successful year.
7 Kurt Busch 102 9
If only Kurt knew he’d get off scot free, chances are Tony wouldn’t have driven that car back to the garage…
8 Kyle Busch 80 11
Hey, Denny… how ya like the view from back there?
9 Denny Hamlin 80 NR
Let’s look at it this way; at least he beat the UPS car Saturday night. And judging by last week’s comments, he certainly has a strong legion of fans.
10 Clint Bowyer 77 7
The NASCAR world is anxious to see if the 2007 Cinderella story is for real, or a one hit wonder.
11 Martin Truex, Jr. 73 10
We’re not going to lie; it’s a little surprising to see DEI come to Daytona and be this flat.
12 Casey Mears 70 15
A popular bandwagon pick going into the 500, but he needs to prove his worth before moving further up in the rankings.
13 Kevin Harvick 69 12
Being the defending Daytona champ counts for something … but there’s been no back-to-back winner in the 500 since Sterling Marlin in 1994-95.
14 Jeff Burton 65 8
Relieved not to have to worry about a lawsuit everytime he mentions his sponsor this year — at least, for now.
15 Ryan Newman 57 14
Odds are still 3-1 he ends up on his roof again at Daytona.
Dropped Out : Greg Biffle (13).
Also Receiving Votes : Biffle 51, Dave Blaney 29, Kasey Kahne 23, Mark Martin 18, Michael Waltrip 18, Juan Pablo Montoya 16, David Reutimann 11, Joe Nemechek 11, Jamie McMurray 9, Bobby Labonte 7, David Ragan 7, Reed Sorenson 5, Elliott Sadler 1.

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Today on the Frontstretch:
Championship Caliber? What Does That Even Mean?
Mirror Driving: Winning Vs. Points, Needing a Boost, and The Lady’s Last Dance?
Nuts for Nationwide: The Curious Case of Elliott Sadler
Happiness Is…Arrogance, Less, Next, and the Outdoors
Frontstretch Foto Funnies: It’s Not Gonna Fit…


©2000 - 2008 Mike Neff and Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!

02/19/2008 07:41 AM

These rankings are hilarious. Take Hendrick, Gibbs, Roush, and RCR teams, throw them in a hat and draw the chase drivers. However, I’m interested in seeing how the COT evens the playing field. That may take a year or more for everyone to catch up with Hendrick. Or is the gap already closing? (i.e. Gibbs, Dodge teams). We’ll get a better guage the next 2 weeks at California and Vegas.


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