Race Weekend Central

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Power Rankings: Top 15 After Kansas

Richmond was a race of surprises, with two of NASCAR’s most competitive drivers—Greg Biffle and Martin Truex Jr.—suffering miserable performances, while Kyle Busch snagged a victory in an otherwise quiet season. Oh, yeah, and some guy named Dale Earnhardt Jr. came close to breaking a long winless streak, but no one cares about that right?

Simply put, Richmond shook up the Sprint Cup Series standings and the same can be said for this week’s Power Rankings. Did Biffle’s performance—or lack thereof—knock him off the top of our rankings? Did Busch’s win move him inside the top 5? Continue reading to find out:

1. Dale Earnhardt Jr. (4) 172 – 6
A guy can only come close so many times before he seals the deal. If only there was some sort of restrictor plate race coming up … Oh wait! _Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com_
2. Greg Biffle (3) 167 – 1
Petitioning the Chase to remove all tracks a mile or less from the schedule. Hey, they already have five 1.5-milers… why not do all ten! _Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com_
3. Jimmie Johnson (2) 162 – 3
Comes out on top during the week nobody wanted to be No. 1._Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com_
4. Denny Hamlin 148 – 4
It was a little bit … Scratch that, it was VERY surprising that Hamlin left Richmond without leading one lap, especially one week after winning at Kansas Speedway. In other words, rare off day for Hamlin at his home track. Either that, or Hamlin and Kyle Busch swapped rides when no one was looking. _Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com_
5. Matt Kenseth 137 – 5
Not exciting but championship material all the way. _Dennis Michelsen, RaceTalkRadio.com_
6. Tony Stewart 134 – 8
Entire pit crew reported to have called out sick every day this week. They’re still waiting for Smoke to calm down. _Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com_
7. Carl Edwards 118 – 9
Jack Roush has instructed the No. 99 team to answer any direction from NASCAR with “Is that your FINAL answer?”. _Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com_
8. Martin Truex Jr. 116 – 2
His signature was the second on the petition to remove Richmond from the schedule, right under Greg Biffle. _Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com_
9. Kyle Busch 114 – 10
Best weekend ever? Oh, no, we don’t mean for Busch. His haters finally have a relevant case when they refer to him as “Crybaby” after choking up in Victory Lane over the weekend. _Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com_
10. Kevin Harvick 98 – 7
We can only sarcastically refer to Harvick as “Happy” so many times before it becomes mundane. Seriously, what’s up with him lately? 5 top 10s in 9 races looks good on paper, but he’s been lacking severely in the “wow factor” this season. _Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com_
11. Brad Keselowski 86 – 11
Small, moral victory when the engine actually goes the distance. How much longer until Penske switches to Ford again? _Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com_
12. Clint Bowyer 83 – 13
5-Hour Energy gave more money, but the boost hasn’t translated into Victory Lane quite yet. _Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com_
13. Kasey Kahne 65 – 15
14. Will he start Raising Kahne and continue rising in the standings? _Dennis Michelsen, RaceTalkRadio.com_
15. Ryan Newman 58 – 12
Ryan Newman heads to his favorite most hated track on the schedule this weekend, where I’m sure he’ll have many nice things very strong words on what’s wrong with restrictor plate racing. _Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com_
16. Mark Martin 54 – NR
Knows how to go fast for one lap. Put it together for all the laps, and he’ll be the oldest winner in NASCAR Sprint Cup history. _Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com_
*Dropped Out:* Joey Logano
*Others Receiving Votes:* Juan Pablo Montoya (41), Paul Menard (41), Jeff Gordon (28), A.J. Allmendinger (23), Jamie McMurray (20), Joey Logano (9), Landon Cassill (3), Marcos Ambrose (3), Jeff Burton (2), Casey Mears (2), Regan Smith (1)
*Who Voted:* Tom Bowles, Frontstretch.com; Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com; Phil Allaway, Frontstretch.com; Carolyn Brewster, NASCAR Illustrated; Toby Christie, Sicknissfied.com; Dustin Long, Athlon Sports; Dennis Michelsen, RaceTalkRadio.com; Matt Taliaferro, Athlon Sports; Summer Dreyer, Frontstretch.com

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