NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2008 Coke Zero 400 at Daytona

Daytona International Speedway once again played havoc with drivers over the Fourth of July weekend. As the action heated up late in the race, some couldn’t find help getting to the front, some couldn’t get out of their own way, and some simply couldn’t stomach 400 miles around the 2.5-mile superspeedway. Was that crash enough to knock Greg Biffle out of this week’s Top 15 — or would Martin Truex Jr. be the odd man out following a 150-point penalty that all but eliminates him from the Chase? And then, there’s the small matter of Tony Stewart turning sickly; while JJ Yeley did an admirable job filling in, was a late-race wreck the final straw that took him outside our Power Rankings chart?

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2008 LENOX Industrial Tools 301 at Loudon

The LENOX Industrial Tools 301 was billed as a race that went “the extra mile,” but it’s actually all the miles that didn’t happen which led to a major jumble in both the race — and our power rankings. With rain wreaking havoc on the final running order, you had Kurt Busch, Michael Waltrip, and JJ Yeley as the top three finishers with just 284 laps completed — a wild conclusion to a wacky finish at the Magic Mile of the Northeast. But could any of the weekend’s big surprises gain enough momentum to enter the top 15 in our exclusive list? Read on to find the answers you seek, and see if you agree with how the Frontstretch writers voted this week.

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2008 Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma

It was Kyle Busch who reestablished himself firmly atop the rankings this week, coming off his series high fifth victory of the season. Behind him, main rival Dale Earnhardt Jr. slipped from first to third after failing to execute a successful fuel mileage strategy two weeks in a row. Around them, it was pure mayhem as several drivers moved up and down on the basis of their road-course expertise. On the other end of the spectrum, Kevin Harvick’s bonsai dive into the hairpin that ended the victory chances of Tony Stewart and Jamie McMurray cost him his spot in the Chase; but did it cost him a spot in our Top 15? Read on to find the answers and see if you agree with how the Frontstretch writers voted this week.

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2008 LifeLock 400 at Michigan

The Irish Hills of Michigan once again produced a fuel mileage finish that will have people buzzing for weeks. Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s strategic win — one that came packaged with a little luck — was enough to move him up the rankings. But did he knock off rival Kyle Busch? We’ll tell you this much; for the first time in months, Busch is not alone atop the charts. Who were those surprises, and which Penske Racing driver is just barely receiving votes these days? Read on to see if you agree or disagree with the latest choices by the Frontstretch writers.

Full Throttle: Shut Up & Drive

Sunday’s 500-mile race in the heat at Pocono was apparently a long, tiresome day for drivers on the Cup circuit. Following the event, Dale Earnhardt Jr. was interviewed by the hosts of the Victory Lane show on SPEED, where his exhaustion led to outward frustration: he stated that the car needs to be fixed and the race needs to be shortened, period. Even race winner Kasey Kahne was able to sneak a jab in; the young driver said this was the first time he’d run the race where he didn’t feel like it was a long day. Well hey fellas, you know what? I’ve got news for you; there are thousands of racecar drivers around the country who’d love to be in your seat. If you can’t handle it, get out and let them take a shot!

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2008 Pocono 500

The tricky triangle in Pennsylvania had several twists and turns for the Cup drivers this past weekend. Who left the track climbing up the Pocono mountains? Read on to find out in the latest edition of our Power Rankings, and see if you agree or disagree with the choices of your favorite Frontstretch writers.

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2008 Best Buy 400 at Dover

The Monster Mile wasn’t as much of a monster as it’s been in the past — that is, after an early race melee involved six of the top 12 drivers in the point standings. But while the rest of the day may have put you to sleep, it did allow for some decisive moves in the rankings this week. The Roush Fenway brigade all climbed up in the order except for David Ragan, while Kasey Kahne, Tony Stewart, and Clint Bowyer were among those who took big hits in the poll this week. Behind them, what underdog driver received enough love to move back into the top 15 — kicking out someone who’s spent nearly all year cruising along in the top 12 in points? Read on to find out, and see if you agree or disagree with the latest choices by our Frontstretch writers.

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2008 Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte

The Coca-Cola 600 is the longest race on the NASCAR schedule, and the twists and turns that take place over those four-and-a-half hours of racing led to plenty of opportunities for writers to change their votes in the rankings. As you might expect, Kasey Kahne made a leap from unranked to well inside the top 15, while Denny Hamlin’s blown tire cost him more than a few positions at the end of Sunday’s race; he tumbled from third to well down the bottom half of our list. Where did Hamlin, Kahne, and the rest of your favorite drivers wind up? Read on below to find out, and be sure to comment and let us know if you agree or disagree with the latest rankings by our Frontstretch experts.

Full Throttle: Kentucky Speedway Acquisition Just Doesn’t Add Up

After attending the announcement Thursday at Lowe’s Motor Speedway that Speedway Motorsports Incorporated had acquired Kentucky Speedway, I was anxious to find out just how much one of the nicest facilities to not have a Cup date cost. But after looking at Bloomberg.com, I was in total disbelief. In 2000, Kentucky Speedway was constructed for a total cost of $152 million. Bruton Smith, just eight years later, is purchasing the track for $78.3 million. While my math skills aren’t the best, I’m pretty sure that adds up to a $73.7 million loss in just eight years.

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2008 All-Star Race at Charlotte

The All-Star Race is all about the money, with a cool $1 million on the line, no one holds back and mayhem typically ensues. Or, as this year’s event showed, it can turn into a parade around the track where track position dominates the event and there is almost no passing for the lead. Read on to see if our picks are all-star or all washed up.

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