Matt Kenseth closed out the regular season with his fourth win of the season, tying Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch for most wins. With that, the 2015 Chase for the Sprint Cup is set. 16 drivers representing eight different teams will compete. Below is a breakdown of the 2015 Chase grid:
Five drivers made the Chase based on points alone (Jamie McMurray, Jeff Gordon, Ryan Newman, Paul Menard & Clint Bowyer).
Joe Gibbs Racing – Ky. Busch, Kenseth, Carl Edwards & Denny Hamlin
Hendrick Motorsports – Johnson, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. & Gordon
Penske Racing – Joey Logano & Brad Keselowski
Richard Childress Racing – Newman & Menard
Stewart Haas Racing – Kevin Harvick & Kurt Busch
Chip Ganassi Racing – McMurray
Furniture Row Racing – Martin Truex, Jr.
Michael Waltrip Racing – Bowyer
Most notably left out of the Chase field is the fourth Hendrick Motorsports driver Kasey Kahne, Tony Stewart, Aric Almirola, Kyle Larson and any driver from Roush Fenway Racing. It’s quite a diverse field, the competition should be tough, and three drivers will be eliminated after Dover. Before the playoffs get underway in Chicagoland, see if your driver made the top 15 in this week’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Power Rankings.
How The Rankings Are Calculated: Frontstretch does our power rankings 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… 3-2-1 basis, giving 20 points to their first-place driver, 19 for second, and so on. In the end, Mike Mehedin calculates the points, adds some funny one-liners, and… here you go!
Joey Logano may be the new Kevin Harvick with respect to top finishes. They may be battling for the big prize in Homestead again. Dwight Drum, RaceTake.com
Kyle Busch is finally positioned near the top of the standings with his four wins. He can surely see the Sprint Cup from there. Dwight Drum, RaceTake.com
After his last ACL tear resulted in a victory, Hamlin thought it would be a sure fire way to join his JGR teammates in their recent string of victories. Looks like that theory only works once in a career. Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com
Kevin Harvick leads the field in top-10 finishes. The Chase is the place to keep that momentum rolling. Dwight Drum, RaceTake.com
First Place Votes: 2
Kenseth has won three of the last six races and has momentum heading into the Chase. All of JGR looks strong, but the No. 20 team has the best chance of taking the Cup when it’s all said and done. Michael Mehedin, Frontstretch.com
First Place Votes: 1
Yes, Keselowski made the Chase this season but only has one win and is taking a backseat to teammate Logano. Michael Mehedin, Frontstretch.com
I actually put Junior as the No. 2 Hendrick Motorsports driver. Sorry, you can’t put anyone above Jimmie. Michael Mehedin, Frontstretch.com
With three wins and JGR momentum with him, Edwards must be dreaming of backflips in the Chase. Dwight Drum, RaceTake.com
Was I the only one that was surprised that McMurray hasn’t made a Chase appearance until this year? Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com
Ok, folks. 10 races to go and a brand new contract extension. Sit back and watch the Johnson / Knaus magic begin. Michael Mehedin, Frontstretch.com
It wasn’t a win, but Gordon nation must be relieved to see their driver show some signs of life heading into the Chase. Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com
Seems like every year there is a non-Chaser that happens to get hot in the final 10. Last year it was Larson. This year, Almirola looks like the top candidate to fill that role. Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com
I’ll put him on par with his teammate Harvick when it comes to who has the better chance of battling for the title. All he needs to do is control his temper and not beat himself. Seems easy enough. Michael Mehedin, Frontstretch.com
May have the most on the line heading into this year’s Chase. Tony Lumbis, Frontstretch.com
I probably speak for everyone when I say that I hope Truex does well in the Chase and is in contention with three races to go. Michael Mehedin, Frontstretch.com