NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Who’s Hot/Who’s Not in the Chase: 2007 UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega Edition

A handful of Chasers, including Matt Kenseth and Kyle Busch, got dragged into a fall mess of mangled machinery coming out of turn 4, all caused when Bobby Labonte simply lost control and spun out in front of the field. The results really jumbled up the Chase standings; for when the smoke cleared, all title contenders figured out just two men had left the rest of them eating their own dust. It was all par for the course in another restrictor-plate roller coaster ride that left engines burning up, Chasers on life support, and fans sitting on the edge of their seats for a last-lap shootout to the finish.

Running Their Mouth: 2007 UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega

Each week, we’ll go through media reports, interviews, PR, and all our own stuff to find the best quotes from the Nextel Cup race, capturing the story of how the weekend unfolded. It’s the most original commentary you’ll ever find: the truth, coming straight out of the mouths of the drivers, crew members, and the car owners themselves. This week, here’s a sneak peek at what a select few were thinking following the much-anticipated UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega Superspeedway.

Matt McLaughlin’s Driver Handicaps: 2007 Talladega Fall Race Edition

Jimmie Johnson – Johnson has been on a roll at Talladega as of late: he won here last spring and finished second in April. He almost won last fall’s Talladega event, as well; that is, before former teammate Brian Vickers crashed the little party Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Johnson were staging on the final lap of the race. Johnson was miffed for a long time after that, but don’t expect it to be a problem this year – Vickers is in a Toyota and might not even qualify for the race.

Who’s Hot/Who’s Not in the Chase: 2007 Lifelock 400 at Kansas Edition

After a wild and wacky weekend at Kansas, people are still trying to figure out who won the race, let alone what the ramifications were on top of the Chase standings. However, as the dust settles and reality sets in that Greg Biffle snagged the win – fair or unfair – the focus should switch to just how clearly the title Chase unfolded after a rain-shortened, crash-filled frenzy in the Midwest. After six drivers were within 28 points heading into the event, now just two are within 114 of new Chase leader Jimmie Johnson – superstar Jeff Gordon and surprise Clint Bowyer. Everyone else got swept up by a Kansas tornado; in fact, half the title contenders finished 35th or worse, putting their Chase hopes in serious doubt heading to Talladega and beyond.

Running Their Mouth: 2007 LifeLock 400 at Kansas

Each week, we’ll go through all the media reports, interviews, PR, and all our own stuff to find the best quotes from the Nextel Cup race, capturing the story of how the weekend unfolded. It’s the most original commentary you’ll ever find: the truth, coming straight out of the mouths of the drivers, crew members, and the car owners themselves. This week, here’s a sneak peek at what a select few were thinking following the rain and darkness-shortened LifeLock 400 at Kansas.

Busch Series Breakdown: 2007 Yellow Transportation 300 at Kansas

The Buschwhackers put on a heck of a show Saturday in the heart of America. The race started with Denny Hamlin and Carl Edwards having a great duel for the lead for the first nine laps, then it became the Matt Kenseth show. Kenseth led the race from lap 10 through lap 34 and then was part of the group that swapped the lead throughout the middle of the race which included Jeff Burton, Greg Biffle, and Brian Vickers. Vickers once again had trouble on pit road during a pit stop while the caution was displayed for oil on the track at lap 127 and was never able to fully recover. Kenseth resumed the lead on lap 146 and held it until lap 183. Kyle Busch overcame a pit road speeding penalty that sent him to the back of the longest line and caught back up to Kenseth, ultimately taking the lead on lap 184 and holding onto it for the rest of the race.

Holding a Pretty Wheel: NASCAR Once Again Consistently Inconsistent

When Carl Edwards was docked 25 points and $25,000 after being ¾ of an inch too low in post-race inspection, it brought squarely into focus a discrepancy in penalties depending on when they occur in a race weekend. It also begs the question of what exactly is, and what is not, a Car of Tomorrow issue.

Matt McLaughlin’s Driver Handicaps: 2007 Lifelock 400 at Kansas Edition

Jeff Gordon – Gordon won the first two Cup races at Kansas and finished fifth in his third start at the track. He hasn’t had a top five here since then, though, and last year suffered a mechanical DNF.

Fantasy Picks ‘N’ Pans: 2007 Lifelock 400 at Kansas Edition

Week three of the Chase finds the traveling road show in the Heartland of America at Kansas Speedway, the newest of the “cookie-cutter” tracks that have come to dominate the schedule in recent years. When it comes to intermediates, there’s one other thing to be aware of; they’re usually the type of racetrack where history repeats itself. Because of that, we’ve gone back through the history books, ready to drop some knowledge from the past to help your future for this week’s edition of Fantasy Picks ‘N’ Pans.

Sign up for the Frontstretch Newsletter

A daily email update (Monday through Friday) providing racing news, commentary, features, and information from Frontstretch.com

Frontstretch