by Garrett Horton
There have been three lead changes at the top of the points this season among three different drivers. Matt Kenseth took the top spot for the second time in 2012, jumping Greg Biffle, who had held onto the position since Vegas. Denny Hamlin is the only other driver to have the led the points, coming at race No. 2 after his victory in Phoenix.
Joe Gibbs Racing now has four wins on the Cup circuit this year, more than any other team.
Since nearly winning Kansas last month, Martin Truex, Jr. has faded five spots in the standings in the six races since, dropping from second to seventh.
Denny Hamlin has led 19 or more laps in the last six Pocono runnings.
Mark Martin has now finished second at Pocono seven times, yet has failed to visit the winners’ circle at the Tricky Triangle. It was the first time he has finished runner-up here since 2004 and first top-5 since he finished third in 2005.
Logano’s victory on Sunday made it nine times a Joe Gibbs car has won at the 2.5 mile triangle, matching Atlanta and Richmond for most wins at a track.
After finishing in the top-10 in three of the first four races, Paul Menard finally got his fourth of the year with a 9th place effort on Sunday.
Landon Cassill, whose BK Racing is not a start and park entry, has completed just ten out of 560 laps the past two weeks. He managed just one lap at Pocono before crashing out and went nine laps at Dover before contact with Tony Stewart ended his day early.
Joey Logano’s win on Sunday made it ten different winners in 14 races this year. Tony Stewart, Denny Hamlin, Brad Keselowski, and Jimmie Johnson are the only two-time winners in 2012.
Dale Earnhardt, Jr. already has 11 top-10 finishes in 2012, more than any other driver and just one short of his total for all of last year.
Despite leaving one of NASCAR’s top teams in Richard Childress Racing for a rookie team at Michael Waltrip Racing, Clint Bowyer is having a career year from a consistency standpoint. His 12.5 average finish this season would elicpse his previous best of 13.8 back in 2007 when he finished third in the final point standings.
There were a total of 19 lead changes in the Pocono 400 on Sunday in the races first running of 400 miles. In last June’s 500 mile affair, there were only 18 lead changes.
A.J. Allmendinger’s average finishing position for the year.
Of the 198 laps Joey Logano has led in his career, 93 of them have come at Pocono.
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