Beatin’ and bangin’, hootin’ and hollerin’, bump and runnin’ and celebrating with the fans? Why, the past few weeks of short track NASCAR action have been classic.
Dare I say it? One might even call it quintessential.
The driver to fare better than anyone after it all was Carl Edwards. Cousin Carl took advantage of some strong cars – and the ole chrome horn – to score back-to-back victories and take over the points lead.
With the strong showing, Edwards is the obvious top dog for the power rankings. However, behind him things get a little more interesting.
That said, here’s who our staff and esteemed guests picked as the best drivers after another great race in Richmond.
POWER RANKINGS: Toyota Owners 400
1. CARL EDWARDS (158 POINTS, No Change)
“Team orders? WHAT team orders?? Edwards said “screw the Tuesday team meeting, I’m COMING THROUGH”. Say what you will, but putting the bumper to Kyle Busch – KYLE BUSCH! – took a brass pair and was exactly the type of finish we need to see more of in NASCAR.” – Pete McCole, AutoRacing1.com
“XAMINED AN XCELLENT XECUTION BY THE XFINITY TOYOTA MADE FOR AN XCITING XPERIENCE.” – @AnnoyingRaceFan
2. KYLE BUSCH (139 POINTS, +2)
3. KEVIN HARVICK (125 POINTS, -1)
6. KURT BUSCH (75 POINTS, +1)
“The elder Busch brother has a bad track record with late-race cautions over the last couple seasons.” – Bearden
“Doomed by a late-race caution. Enough said.” – Fesko
7. DALE EARNHARDT, JR. (74 POINTS, -4)
10. BRAD KESELOWSKI (24 POINTS, Prev. Unranked)
“SEE KEVIN HARVICK, BUT REPLACE BUSCH LIGHT WITH MILLER LIGHT.” – @AnnoyingRaceFan
“That early win’s looking better and better as this team struggles through the spring.” – Bearden
CLOSE, BUT NO CIGAR
These two drivers have each made gains since the start of the season, but it’s going to take a little more for them to prove they belong back in the top 10.
Martin Truex, Jr. (22 Points, Finished 18th) – “The team needs to put a full race together. They have the speed to do so, but haven’t been able to capitalize. Aka: Atlanta and Texas. ” – Albino
Kasey Kahne (18 Points, Finished 6th) – “First top 5 of the season, but considering where this team was weeks ago, they deserve something for the effort” – Utter
|AnnoyingRaceFan||@AnnoyingRaceFan||I’M @annoyingracefan ON TWITTER (AND INSTAGRAM). PEOPLE CALL ME ARF. I’M A RELATIVE NOBODY.|
|Brian Eberly||@beberly18||Writer, Rubbings Racing, Motor Racing Digest|
|Mike Hembree||@MikeHembree||Writer, USA Today|
|Ben Hinc||@lemonlovr||Owner, The Apex|
|Jerry Jordan||@kicknthetires||Owner, Kicknthetires.Net|
|Pete McCole||@PeteMcCole||NASCAR Writer, AutoRacing1.com|
|The Orange Cone||@TheOrangeCone||I am an orange traffic cone.|
|Kyle Pokrefky||@KPokrefky||Writer, The Fourth Turn|
|Reid Spencer||@Reid_Spencer||Lead Writer, NASCAR Wire Service|
|Doug Turnbull||@DougTurnbull||Announcer, PRN Live, Atlanta Motor Speedway|
|Jim Utter||@jim_utter||NASCAR Editor, Motorsport.com|
How they’re made: Following the conclusion of each NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race, members of a voting panel including Frontstretch writers, other members of accredited media including Motorsport, NASCAR and USA Today, as well as writers from other sites and social media favorites, submit their top 10 drivers for the Power Rankings. The drivers are then given points based off their position, with first place getting 10 points, and each subsequent driver getting one fewer point until the 10th-place driver, who gets a lone point. Points are then tallied, and the rankings are created.
Do you agree with our rankings? Think someone got snubbed, or that one of the top drivers is overrated? Let us know in the comments, and tell us who raced their way into your top 10.
About the author
A graduate of Ball State, Aaron rejoins Frontstretch for his second season in 2016 following a successful year that included covering seven races and starting the popular "Two-Headed Monster" column in 2015. Now in his third year of covering motorsports, Aaron serves as an Assistant Editor for Frontstretch while also contributing to other popular sites including Speed51 and The Apex. He encourages you to come say hi when you see him at the track.
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