The Frontstretch: NASCAR Sprint Cup Power Rankings: Top 15 After Texas by Frontstretch Staff -- Wednesday April 18, 2012

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NASCAR Sprint Cup Power Rankings: Top 15 After Texas

Frontstretch Staff · Wednesday April 18, 2012

 

Frontstretch Power Rankings
It’s about time, right?! Greg Biffle, who has been the points leader for all but two races this season, finally and officially established himself as a force to be reckoned with by winning his first trophy of the season at Texas Motor Speedway last Saturday night. While Jimmie Johnson dominated, leading 156 of the 334 laps, Biffle found that extra “something” with 30 to go and grabbed the top spot. He was virtually unchallenged for the rest of the race, snapping a 49-race winless drought in the process.  
 
Quiet, consistent finishes are what put Biffle in that position, but was it enough to put him at the top of our Power Rankings? Or did Johnson’s impressive two weeks, with 268 laps led push him to the top of our leaderboard? Keep reading to find out:

How The Rankings Are Calculated: Frontstretch does our power rankings somewhat similar to how the Associated Press does them for basketball or football -- our expert stable of NASCAR writers, both on staff and from other major publications 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, Summer Dreyer calculates the points, adds some funny one-liners, and ... here you go!

FRONTSTRETCH TOP 15 POWER RANKINGS: APRIL 18th
Rank Driver (First Place Votes) Votes Last Week
1 Greg Biffle (9) 199
Saturday night's win is further establishing Biffle as the regular season favorite. But as teammate Carl Edwards can attest to, that doesn't guarantee anything come Chase time. Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com
2 Jimmie Johnson 177 
Didn't Ryan Newman get the memo? When Jimmie Johnson is fighting for the lead, he gets his own racing lane, free of traffic for 50 feet on either side. That's what Chad told him! Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com
3 Matt Kenseth 169 
It appears teammate Biffle has been taking notes on Kenseth's patented “finish consistently, attract little media attention and pick up an occasional win here and there” strategy. Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com
4 Martin Truex, Jr. 163 
Michael Waltrip Racing cued up the Monkees on my MP3 player: “I’m a Believer.” Dennis Michelsen, RaceTalkRadio.com
5 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. 157 
10th on the racetrack Saturday night, but back in familiar territory as the fourth-best Hendrick car on a 1.5-miler. Prediction: will be clicking his heels, going "There's no place like Talladega" about 20 times after Kansas. Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com
6 Kevin Harvick 135 
Nothing would have spiced up a dull Texas race like a little love tap from the front of Harvick’s car to the rear of Kyle Busch’s. Not that we’d ever want to stir anything up... Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com
7 Carl Edwards 123 11 
Second place curse has made him the weakest of the Roush drivers so far this season. Dennis Michelsen, RaceTalkRadio.com
8 Tony Stewart (1) 122 
Did someone forget to tell Stewart and company that the Easter break only lasts one week? Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com
9 Denny Hamlin 117 
Someone needs to tell Darian Grubb getting "revenge" over Tony Stewart by winning first doesn't mean he gets to take the rest of the year off. Although I'm sure Denny's reminding him of it, at the racetrack, in so many wonderful ways... Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com
10 Jeff Gordon 115  13 
Aside from Martinsville, Gordon hasn’t shown much competitiveness and his finishes have been atrocious for a four-time champion. Of course, the same thing could be said about Tony Stewart for the first 26 races of the 2011 season. Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com
11 Mark Martin 88  NR 
Might only be a part-time driver but shows a full-time effort every race he shows up for this season. Dennis Michelsen, RaceTalkRadio.com
12 Ryan Newman 81 
Kindly reminded this week, at 4 AM by some "informants" in dark glasses and heavy trenchcoats where he sits on the Hendrick / Stewart-Haas totem pole. I don't think the No. 39 will be a "lapped traffic problem" for Mr. Johnson anymore. Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com
13 Clint Bowyer 73  10 
Bowyer did the Texas two-step outta there! That race was a mess for the No. 15 team compared to his teammates. Amanda Ebersole, SkirtsandScuffs.com
14 Kyle Busch 72  NR 
Not racing as much seems to have taken the edge off of Rowdy. Dennis Michelsen, RaceTalkRadio.com
15 Brad Keselowski 5312 
A White House visit for his finishing position in the Chase last year was the lone highlight of his week. Good thing he was in someone else's car so he could be certain there would be enough fuel to make it there... Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com
Dropped Out: A.J. Allmendinger (14), Aric Almirola (15).
Others Receiving Votes: A.J. Allmendinger (50), Kasey Kahne (49), Paul Menard (40), Kurt Busch (29), Joey Logano (25), Jamie McMurray (20), Jeff Burton (16), Juan Pablo Montoya (14), Marcos Ambrose (12), Regan Smith (1).
Who Voted: Phil Allaway, Frontstretch.com; Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com; Carolyn Brewster, NASCAR Illustrated; Kelly Crandall, Speedwaymedia.com; Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com; Amanda Ebersole, Skirtsandscuffs.com; Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com; Dustin Long, Athlon Sports; Dennis Michelsen, RaceTalkRadio.com; Mike Neff, Frontstretch.com; Matt Taliaferro, Athlon Sports.

Contact Summer Dreyer

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