NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Who’s Hot/Who’s Not In Sprint Cup: 2009 NASCAR Banking 500 at Charlotte Edition

Going into Saturday’s “The Word Bank is in the Title Sponsorship Name Too Much” 500, the Chase points were the tightest in the format’s six-season history. But leaving Lowe’s Motor Speedway, the seemingly bulletproof No. 48 team of Jimmie Johnson now has the biggest lead of any driver through five Chase races. Talladega was supposed …

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Who’s Hot/Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: 2009 Pepsi 500 at Fontana Edition

As Yogi Berra once said: “It’s déjà vu all over again.” Another fall race in Fontana is complete, and for the third straight year another victory (and in this case, the point lead along with it) went to Jimmie Johnson, Chad Knaus, and company. Any fan who has followed NASCAR even remotely over the past …

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Who’s Hot/Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: 2009 AAA 400 at Dover Edition

Surprise, surprise… Jimmie Johnson is the early favorite to win the Cup Series title. The three-time defending Chase champ dominated the AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway en route to his fourth win of the year and season sweep at the Monster Mile. Johnson led 271 of the 400 laps and never had a real …

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Who’s Hot/Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: 2009 Chase Elimination Edition

Maybe Kyle Busch smashing that Sam Bass-crafted guitar earlier this year was bad luck after all. Saturday night’s Chevy Rock & Roll 400 at Richmond International Raceway proved to play a different tune than Busch’s preference, though the racing Gods left enough light at the end of the tunnel for the No. 18 team to …

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Bowles-Eye View: Kyle’s Chase Crumbles Around “Points Racing”… Will He Be Next?

Kyle Busch’s No. 18 pulled into the pits Saturday night… and everyone from fans to first aid held their collective breath. It was five minutes after the checkered flag at Richmond, the last laps of a regular season that ended without his name in lights as a Chase contender. In the end, the difference between …

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Holding a Pretty Wheel: Diamonds in the Rough – 5 Drivers Having a Great 2009, Not That You’ve Seen It On TV

NASCAR broadcasts these days are, as many fans complain, not exactly equitable in how they dole out airtime to drivers. While one guy (you fill in the name) will be on TV throughout the broadcast no matter where he is running, another (fill in that guy, too) might be having a great run-and you hardly …

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Bowles-Eye View: Don’t Let Pocono Rain On Your Parade – Some Sunday Highlights From The Track

While Pocono’s 500-miler was pushed back a day, the rain couldn’t do the same to my deadline. So while I’d love to write on the race itself, instead I started this Sunday night staring at a blank page after “start your engines” became “stop those weepers!” That left us with hours upon hours of driver …

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2009 Driver Report Cards, Part I: Grading the Chase Contenders

We’re one race past the statistical halfway point of the 2009 season and as we gear up for the stretch run of 17 Sprint Cup races in 18 weeks, the much maligned (and in equal parts ballyhooed) “Chase for the Sprint Cup” is just seven races away. So before we get down to the serious business of the sharp end of the season, we’ve graded each of the top 40 drivers – based on the points standings as we run headed to the Brickyard. We’ve divided our review into two halves; today, we focus on the top 20 drivers while tomorrow we’ll look at the wheelmen running in positions 21 through 40. Some of these grades will seem just right to you, others a country mile off. But no matter what you think, let us know what you agree with, what you don’t, and why below…

Leading off, it’s “owner/driver” Tony Stewart, a moniker he’s taken well to, it seems.

Running Their Mouth: 2009 Coke Zero 400 at Daytona

Each week, we’ll go through media reports, interviews, PR and all of our own stuff to find the best quotes from the Sprint 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 car owners themselves. This week, here’s a peek at what the drivers were thinking following the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway.

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