The Frontstretch: Frontstretch Sprint Cup Power Rankings : Top 15 After Daytona by Frontstretch Staff -- Wednesday July 8, 2009

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Frontstretch Sprint Cup Power Rankings : Top 15 After Daytona

Frontstretch Staff · Wednesday July 8, 2009


Frontstretch Power Rankings

The tight packs and unpredictable nuances of Daytona’s draft moved several competitors around our rankings this weekend. While one driver took a large hit thanks to an early wreck, another actually moved up in the standings … even though he was caught in a late-race melee and finished outside the top 10. That, in a nutshell, is what the wackiness of plate racing will do to voting experts trying to sort the innocent victim from the ugly perpetrators of those unavoidable multi-car crashes.

But all the wrangling back in the pack didn’t change one bit who’s firmly entrenched at the top. After his last lap “pass” of Kyle Busch, Tony Stewart remains King of the Rankings for yet another week. And as for everyone else? Read on to find out if your driver pulled the late-race slingshot to move up the poll — or is picking up the pieces of his battered car en route to falling down the ladder after the Big One.

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 Tony Stewart (10) 200 1
Having the King blow off that airhorn in every other driver’s motor home the night before the race seems to have finally paid off.
2 Jimmie Johnson 187 2
Johnson avoiding all the plate wrecks? No way! It’s not like he ever has any racing luck or anything …
3 Jeff Gordon 174 3
Pepsi Driver Jeff Gordon wishes that the Independence Weekend classic would revert back to its old name – the Pepsi 400 — for the sake of his sponsor and his performance. His two finishes since it changed to the Coke Zero 400? 30th and 28th.
4 Kurt Busch 166 4
2 is the perfect number for Busch to run at Daytona, the track where he’s always the bridesmaid but never the bride.
5 Carl Edwards 148 5
Looks like a little Sweet Onion Chicken Teriyaki was all the pit crew needed to get back on track.
6 Juan Pablo Montoya 134 7
That’s right, Montoya moved up a spot further into Chase contention. Don’t look now, but this thing is looking like it just might happen.
7 Denny Hamlin 129 12
Learning from his teammate how to lead a bunch of laps and not close the deal.
8 Kasey Kahne 128 8
Can you finish behind someone when you’re actually underneath them?
9 Kyle Busch 127 11
Once again proved that turning right on an oval is not a good idea.
10 Mark Martin 97 6
When the cleanest driver in NASCAR makes contact with the second cleanest driver in the sport, who loses? The one who is also the driver with the worst luck in NASCAR.
11 Greg Biffle 95 9
Former winner of the race doesn’t mean squat when you’re fifth out of five for your organization.
12 Ryan Newman 73 10
Maybe he can get Kentucky Grilled Chicken on the hood for Talladega…
13 Matt Kenseth 71 14
Well, it wasn’t a victory, but it was a top 10 — which certainly helps his cause the way his team has been running as of late.
14 David Reutimann 62 13
No rain and a 36th place finish? Just another day at the office for Reutimann.
T – 15 Joey Logano 59 15
After a rough start, he’s gone from the edges of the top 35 to challenging for the top 20 in points.
T – 15 Marcos Ambrose 59 NR
Who knew getting taught by kangaroos how to “bounce around” in the draft would pay off!
Dropped Out: None.
Also Receiving Votes: Clint Bowyer (50), Brian Vickers (37), Jamie McMurray (27), Jeff Burton (26), Elliott Sadler (22), Sam Hornish, Jr. (13), Dale Earnhardt, Jr. (8), Regan Smith (3), Brad Keselowski (2), Reed Sorenson (2), Casey Mears (1).
Who Voted: Thomas Bowles, Ren Jonsin, Mike Neff, Tony Lumbis, Doug Turnbull, Matt Taliaferro, Vito Pugliese, Bryan Keith, Phillip Allaway, and Kurt Smith.

Contact Mike Neff

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Today on the Frontstretch:
Did You Notice? … Breaking Down A Sprint Cup Season Eight Races In
Beyond the Cockpit: Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. on Growing Up Racing and Owner Loyalties
The Frontstretch Five: Flaws Exposed In the New Chase So Far
NASCAR Writer Power Rankings: Top 15 After Darlington
NASCAR Mailbox: Past Winners Aren’t Winning …. Yet
Open Wheel Wednesday: How Can IndyCar Stand Out?


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Evan Oslund
07/08/2009 02:59 PM

Mike, I’d really like to know what Reutimann has ever done to you. Every time he is mentioned, you always have something bad to say, even when he runs well. Please explain your hatred for him to us. We are concerned!

Mike Neff
07/08/2009 06:18 PM

I don’t have a hatred for Reutimann. In fact, he’s one of the nicest guys in the garage. My problem with Reutimann is that people make him out like he’s a championship contender when he runs in the low teens and upper 20s in most races. If a contender ran like that people would be screaming that something was wrong and changes need to be made. I think the Beak does a great job with the equipment he is in but he’s not a championship caliber driver yet.


Contact Mike Neff

Recent articles from 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!