NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Paul Menard Wins Pole for 2015 Sprint Showdown at Charlotte

2014 Pocono II CUP Paul Menard David Gilliland CIA

(Credit: CIA Stock Photography)

Paul Menard is looking to make it into the Sprint All-Star Race with a victory in Friday night’s Sprint Showdown. Thus far, he has a slight advantage over the rest of the field. Menard has won the pole for the preliminary race with a time of 28.470 seconds. Making his eighth Showdown appearance, he is looking …

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Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2015 Spongebob 400 at Kansas

2015 Kansas I CUP Jimmie Johnson trophy credit NASCAR via Getty Images

(Photo Credit: NASCAR via Getty Images)

Another rain delay and another late finish. This time Jimmie Johnson took advantage of a late-race caution and chose track position over tires/fuel to claim his season-leading third victory. Kevin Harvick led the second-most laps (53), but after pitting and taking two tires, was unable to catch Johnson in the few laps remaining. He managed another …

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Did You Notice? Consistency, Hello Underdogs & Quick Hits

2015 Talladega I CUP fans credit NASCAR via Getty Images

(Photo: NASCAR via Getty Images)

Did You Notice? That Richard Petty Motorsports had both drivers – Sam Hornish Jr. and Aric Almirola – finish in the top 15 in Sunday’s GEICO 500 at Talladega? For Almirola, the consistent top-20 finish is nothing new. Through 10 races in 2015, the No. 43 Ford has only one finish worse than 20th (26th at …

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Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 after the 2015 GEICO 500 at Talladega

2015 Talladega I CUP pack racing III credit NASCAR via Getty Images

(Photo: NASCAR via Getty Images)

Man, Talladega is a doozy, huh? Dale Earnhardt Jr.‘s first victory of the season – and first at Talladega in 11 years – was great for the sport and meant, for a moment, that all was right in the racing world. However, the monster that is ‘Dega was also very unkind to several other drivers …

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Thinkin’ Out Loud: 2015 GEICO 500 at Talladega

2015 Talladega NSCS Dale Earnhardt Jr. checkered flag credit nascar via getty images

(Photo: NASCAR via Getty Images)

Who’s in the headline – It took 11 years but Dale Earnhardt Jr. finally won another Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega. After some spirited racing for much of the first part of the race, the last third turned into a mind-numbing parade with little to no action at all. Earnhardt pitted with a few …

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Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2015 Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond

2015 Richmond I CUP Kurt Busch Jamie McMurray racing credit NASCAR via Getty Images

(Photo: NASCAR via Getty Images)

Ask anyone and they would tell you that a win was inevitable once Kurt Busch returned behind the wheel of the No. 41. He came close a few times but finally closed the deal, leading 291 laps and winning his first race of the season at Richmond. Oh, and by the way, he’s now all …

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6 Key Tracks in Paul Menard’s Race to the Chase

2015 Bristol I CUP Paul Menard car credit Amy Henderson

(Photo: Amy Henderson, Frontstretch)

Looking at the Chase Grid following last week’s race at Richmond, you might be surprised to find Paul Menard sitting at 13th in points. After all, this is a driver with one career win and a best career finish in the points of 16th. But he’s been in this position before, each of the last …

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Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2015 Duck Commander 500 at Texas

2015 Texas I CUP Jimmie Johnson six guns credit NASCAR via Getty Images

(Photo: NASCAR via Getty Images)

Saturday night at Texas Motor Speedway might have foreshadowed the battle for the 2015 Sprint Cup championship between Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick. It was a riveting battle for the win in the final 15 laps. And if Harvick didn’t push his car a bit too far and scrape the wall, it might have been an …

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Did You Notice? A Quick Look Inside the NASCAR Numbers

2015 Martinsville I CUP Martin Truex Jr pack racing credit NASCAR via Getty Images

(Photo: NASCAR via Getty Images)

Did You Notice? Six races into 2014, the difference between sixth and 20th in the Cup standings is just 35 points? However, the difference between first and sixth is 90 points, with Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano, Martin Truex Jr., Brad Keselowski and Kasey Kahne creating some distance between themselves and the rest of the field. It’s an …

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Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2015 STP 500 at Martinsville

2015 Martinsville I CUP Denny Hamlin woohoo credit NASCAR via Getty Images

(Photo: NASCAR via Getty Images)

It seems, for the time being, that Joe Gibbs Racing is back. JGR cars took three of the top-five finishing positions at Martinsville including David Ragan (fifth), Matt Kenseth (fourth) and winner Denny Hamlin. Carl Edwards finished in 17th position. Hamlin did not lead the most laps, but he led the one that mattered most, …

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