The Frontstretch: Frontstretch Sprint Cup Power Rankings : Top 15 After Martinsville by Frontstretch Staff -- Wednesday April 1, 2009

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Frontstretch Sprint Cup Power Rankings : Top 15 After Martinsville

Frontstretch Staff · Wednesday April 1, 2009


Frontstretch Power Rankings

The oldest track on the circuit showed us Sunday it still offers some of the best racing in NASCAR. Chewing up and spitting out both veterans and rookies alike, the tricky .526-mile oval at Martinsville did its part to jumble up the power rankings for our Frontstretch experts.

With their bumping and banging for the lead on Sunday, Denny Hamlin and Jimmie Johnson were able to make big gains up the power rankings ladder. But were they enough to push Jeff Gordon off the top spot? Meanwhile, Matt Kenseth and Jeff Burton were among those who took it on the chin at this short track. Read on to see how far they slid — and which new drivers drove their way up the list — in this week’s edition of the Frontstretch Top 15.

How The Rankings Are Calculated: Frontstretch does our power rankings somewhat similar to how the Associated Press does them for basketball or football — writers on staff will vote for the Top 20 on a 20-19-18-17-16-15…3-2-1 basis, giving 20 points to their first place driver, 19 for their second, and so on. In the end, Mike Neff calculates the points, adds some funny one liners, and … voila! You have one batch of power rankings to serve to our fans.

Rank Driver (First Place Votes) Votes Last Week
1 Jeff Gordon (6) 217 1
Consistency is keeping him on top for now — but it will take wins to stay there once the Chase begins.
2 Jimmie Johnson (1) 202 6
Not sure what was more unnecessary at Martinsville this weekend: a competition yellow 16 laps after a caution flag, a caution for a Coors Light can in Turn 2, or Johnson’s beard.
3 Clint Bowyer 198 3
Looking more and more like the modern day version of Terry Labonte each week.
4 Denny Hamlin (1) 176 10
Fully trained now to expect he’ll lose races he should win. And that’s not a good thing…
5 Kyle Busch 175 2
Busch into Speed brought the mixture of M&M’s and Red Bull. The result was the kind of disaster one gets with a Pop Rocks and Coke mix…
6 Tony Stewart 172 8
After witnessing Johnson’s somewhat heated post-race statements combined with scruffy stubble, Stewart has become creeped out, thinking Jimmie is trying to become him. If J.J. starts pounding burgers… hide the lotion.
7 Kurt Busch 136 4
Two weeks removed from his first win of the season, Busch was offered the opportunity to exit the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge by The Captain himself during midrace R. Lee Ermy / “Full Metal Jacket” tirade. Penske is looking to hire Jimmy Spencer as his spotter.
8 Carl Edwards 114 5
An intermediate track can’t get here fast enough for Cousin Carl.
9 Kasey Kahne 105 9
He’s still finished every race so far on the lead lap. Notice we left out the words “up front.”
10 Kevin Harvick 100 13
Chances Harvick will move KHI to Cup someday and become the unofficial third RCR car like Stewart has with Hendrick: 50/50. Yup. You heard it here first.
11 David Reutimann 97 11
Third place out of the MWR stable has to sting a little bit this week.
12 A.J. Allmendinger 96 NR
Fine, we’ll say it. Change his car number to No. 43 and somebody contact STP — before they offer him that U.S.-based Formula One ride and it’s too late.
13 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. 94 15
After seeing how Dale and Tony Jr. performed after “the talk” this week, maybe Rick Hendrick should be put in charge of turning around the auto industry.
14 Ryan Newman 79 NR
Staged brilliant late race charge up to sixth place in closing laps — just so he could ambush Johnson with Gillette Sensor upon exiting his car and dispatch with that terrible beard.
15 Mark Martin 72 NR
Back-to-back 7th place finishes with some of his best tracks coming up. Whoever said Martin was out of it might want to take another look at the little guy. Temporal vein is only at 20% capacity right now … but just wait until Phoenix.
Dropped Out: Matt Kenseth (7), Brian Vickers (12), Jeff Burton (14).
Also Receiving Votes: Jeff Burton (65), Juan Pablo Montoya (59), Marcos Ambrose (49), Matt Kenseth (38), Brian Vickers (26), Michael Waltrip (23), Jamie McMurray (13), Bobby Labonte (4).
Who Voted: Thomas Bowles, Ren Jonsin, Mike Neff, Tony Lumbis, Matt Taliaferro, Vito Pugliese, Bryan Keith, Phillip Allaway, Kurt Smith, Doug Turnbull, and Danny Peters.

Contact Mike Neff

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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…


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04/01/2009 08:54 AM

Its a little creepy the way you people stalk Gordon and Johnson . Either creepy or latent . I’m not sure Gordon belongs at the top of the list as hes been outrun every race this season , but i’m positive Johnson belongs no higher on the list than his current NASCAR point standing . And if your “ votes “ are because of Johnsons performance this week , then Denny Hamlin should certainly rank higher because he outran and outdrove Johnson for 99% of the race .

04/01/2009 09:27 AM

Yeah, funny how that last 1% always seems to come around and bite them in the rear, Marshall.


Contact Mike Neff

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Want to find out more about Mike Neff? Maybe see all the articles he's written here at the Frontstetch? Check out his article archive and bio page then!