Race Weekend Central

The 10: All Stars and Wrecked Cars

Is anyone else still confused?

Our writers certainly were after one of the wildest All-Star races in recent memory. From infield puddles to control booth blunders, the new format for the race led to one of the most exciting – if mind-numbing – nights in NASCAR history.

With so many of our contributors still scratching their heads, and few deserving a small break for 600 miles of racing this weekend, the minds at Frontstretch elected to give a few of them the week off. But a small core of our crew still came together to determine who stands tall after the final exhibition of the year.

Here’s what they had to say.

POWER RANKINGS: After NASCAR’s All-Star Race

1. KYLE BUSCH (83 POINTS, No Change)

(Photo: NASCAR)
(Photo: NASCAR)

“I would have loved to hear what was going through Kyle Busch’s mind when the entire field blew past him on that last restart. At least he and his team learned for next week that you’re gonna be dead meat on old tires.” – Pete McCole, AutoRacing1.com

2. KEVIN HARVICK (76 POINTS, No Change)

(Photo: NASCAR)
(Photo: NASCAR)
 “Not a win. Not a loss. Not much else to say. On to the next one.” – Aaron Bearden, Frontstretch 

3.  KURT BUSCH (74 POINTS, +1)

(Photo: NASCAR)
(Photo: NASCAR)
“Six straight top-10 finishes (seven if you count the All-Star Race) make him the most consistent driver on the NASCAR circuit right now. Too bad the Indy double wasn’t in the cards but that “goose egg” in the win column this season could be eliminated come Sunday’s 600.” – Tom Bowles, Frontstretch

4.   CARL EDWARDS (70 POINTS, -1)

(Photo: NASCAR)
(Photo: NASCAR)
“Finished the highest of the Gibbs cars and put himself on the cover of a new video game. Not a bad night. Let’s hope the game is good.” – Phil Allaway, Frontstretch

5.  BRAD KESELOWSKI (56 POINTS, No Change)

(Photo: NASCAR)
(Photo: NASCAR)

“I’ll give him credit for defending the All-Star Race format like I once defended my projects in middle school art class.” – Bryan Gable, Frontstretch

6.   CHASE ELLIOTT (51 POINTS, +1)

(Photo: NASCAR)
(Photo: NASCAR)

“Earned his way into the All-Star Race this year through the Sprint Fan Vote. Why do I have a funny feeling he won’t need that backdoor entry ever again?” – Bowles

 

7.   JOEY LOGANO (40 POINTS, Prev. Unranked)

(Photo: NASCAR)
(Photo: NASCAR)
“Logano still isn’t in the Chase, but he does have a million good reasons to feel good this week. Not a bad alternative. – Bearden

8.   JIMMIE JOHNSON (38 POINTS, No Change)

(Photo: NASCAR)
(Photo: NASCAR)
“Johnson sandbagging in the second segment? Not buying it. That would have been like saying “HIT ME” when you’re sitting on 20 at the blackjack table. It was a gamble that had no chance of paying off.” – McCole

9.   MATT KENSETH (35 POINTS, -3)

(Photo: NASCAR)
(Photo: NASCAR)
“Not since the Battle of Little Bighorn has a strategy backfired so badly. Kenseth and his team gambled and everyone else paid for it. I don’t blame Kenseth for gaming the system – they were doing what they need to do to win – but it pretty much screwed up everyone’s night.” – McCole

10. KYLE LARSON (30 POINTS, No Change)

(Photo: NASCAR)
(Photo: NASCAR)

“Three weeks, three near-misses. One of two things is going to happen here: Kyle Larson is getting closer to Victory Lane or this team is going to start souring on itself after a little too much oh-so-close.” – Bowles

 

CLOSE, BUT NO CIGAR

These two drivers didn’t end up in the money, but all things considered, the night could’ve gone worse. Some Coca-Cola 600 success could push them over the top.

Trevor Bayne (19 Points) – “More of that aggression, please.” – Bearden

Martin Truex, Jr. (12 Points) – “Hard to say what he could have done Saturday night, but he got shafted by that caution for McMurray’s spin.” – Allaway

Others receiving votes: Dale Earnhardt, Jr. (11) Denny Hamlin (3), Roger Penske (2)

Contributors

NameTwitter
Dustin Albino@DustinAlbino
Phil Allaway@Critic84
Aaron Bearden@AaronBearden93
Summer Bedgood@SummerBedgood
Tom Bowles@NASCARBowles
Greg Davis@GregMDavis
Sean Fesko@TheWriterSean
Michael Finley@FinleyFactor
Bryan GableN/A
Tony Lumbis@TonyLumbis
Toni Montgomery@ToniLMontgomery
Kevin Rutherford@surfwax83
Jason Schultz@NASCARJason
Joseph Wolkin@JosephNASCAR
NameTwitterPosition/Description
AnnoyingRaceFan @AnnoyingRaceFan I’M @annoyingracefan ON TWITTER (AND INSTAGRAM). PEOPLE CALL ME ARF. I’M A RELATIVE NOBODY.
MatthewDillner@MatthewDillnerNASCAR
Brian Eberly@beberly18Writer, Rubbings Racing, Motor Racing Digest
Mike Hembree@MikeHembreeWriter, USA Today
Ben Hinc@lemonlovrOwner, The Apex
Jerry Jordan@kicknthetiresOwner, Kicknthetires.Net
Pete McCole@PeteMcColeNASCAR Writer, AutoRacing1.com
The Orange Cone@TheOrangeConeI am an orange traffic cone.
Kyle Pokrefky@KPokrefkyWriter, The Fourth Turn
Reid Spencer@Reid_SpencerLead Writer, NASCAR Wire Service
Doug Turnbull@DougTurnbullAnnouncer, PRN Live, Atlanta Motor Speedway
Jim Utter@jim_utterNASCAR 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, 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 few 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 others what your top 10 would be. 

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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