We're down to the wire, my friends...one last race in the Nascar NEXTEL Cup!
Jimmie Johnson's gotta be flying high, after an amazing performance at Darlington last week. I was very impressed with his driving.
The current standings, from 1st to 10th:
1. Kurt Busch 6346 pts. 2. Jimmie Johnson 6328 pts 3. Jeff Gordon 6325 pts 4. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 6274 pts 5. Mark Martin 6264 pts 6. Tony Stewart 6161 pts 7. Ryan Newman 6102 pts 8. Matt Kenseth 5963 pts 9. Elliott Sadler 5963 pts 10. Jeremy Mayfield 5942 pts
It's a really tight race between Busch, Johnson, and Gordon...and it'll be interesting to see who takes it this weekend.
All in all, it has been an exciting, frustrating, and tragic season of Nascar.
Originally posted by SOKI'm relatively new to Nascar, but I don't understand how someone who won fewer races can beat out someone who won more.
Well, the way NASCAR's people came up with the point system that's in place now is that back in the 60s and 70s many drivers would stick to the tracks in their region (at which they were successful) and not attend all of the races, so by awarding points to all of the competitors who showed up, they were penalizing those who did that, making it basically impossible to win a championship without attending ALL of the races.
(Case in point, 1976: David Pearson won TEN out of thirty races, but due to starting only 22 races he finished ninth in points. Cale Yarborough won nine races that year and won the title, but the guys who finished second through eighth in points that year won ten races COMBINED, but all raced in all thirty events.)
Of course, that becomes a moot point NOW, because with all of the sponsor money all of the big race teams go to and qualify for every event, so NOW the key to maximizing your points is MINIMIZING your bad finishes, because THOSE BAD finishes are what decides championships. Mark Martin had an outside chance to WIN THE NEXTEL CUP, but he only had THREE top-ten finishes in the ten Chase races. THREE! However, his worst finish during the Chase was 20th, and he actually outscored Junior during the Chase, despite Junior having two WINS and SIX top-tens, because Junior finshed 23rd once and 33rd twice.
It's kind of funny to me how they essentially ended up with the SAME scenario from last year, where a guy wins a bunch of races (last year Ryan Newman, this year JJ) and loses the title who is consistent (last year Kenseth, this year Busch). That's not to take anything away from Busch or Kenseth...everybody's racing under the same rules, so I completely believe Busch's title is legit.
And what a race that was! Biffle's move at the end was FANTASTIC. I was surprised Nemechek didn't try to help Johnson and Gordon more on that restart with 11 laps to go, and he ended up really hurting them after Gordon especially got that GREAT restart. Great job by the 97 team coming back from the WHEEL falling off as well.
INTERESTING NOTE ABOUT HOW BUSCH WON: Bonus points...oh, the big deal they make about guys staying out and leading a lap to get the five bonus points! Well, here's how the bonus points from the Chase turned out.
Kurt Busch 55 Jeff Gordon 35 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 35 Jimmie Johnson 30 Mark Martin 30
How many points did Busch win by, again? Remember that next year when guys are staying out during cautions to lead a lap.
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I don't know what the solution is, guys, but I feel like there has to be more emphasis on winning in Nextel Cup. Like, I can't stand Jimmy Johnson, but it's apparent to me that he was the top dog this season.
I might be OK with the current concept through the start of the chase, then go to fomula 1 rules for the chase. The emphasis is on winning and the winner gets so much more than the other racers. It makes teams take more chances to win that they don't take now.
Now, is it ok for me yell THEATRE! in a crowded fire?
According to this page, there has never been a Nextel/WC champion with an average finish that was 2 or 3 spots lower than anyone in contention (they've got the Avg. Start and Finish swapped for 2003, so Kenseth looks like he won with a finish avg of 21.3); Nascar has always been a competition of consistency, not simply victory.
If they're going to keep the chase, I agree with AWARulz; they need to go to a F1 points system for those final ten races, starting all ten drivers with zero points.