Keeping Pace

Week 22: The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Top 12 – And Beyond

 (The Spokesman-Review)
(The Spokesman-Review)

A look at the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series top 12, along with other notable drivers, going into the Heluva Good! Sour Cream Dips at The Glen at Watkins Glen International on August 9.

Courtesy: NASCAR Media Relations

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Aug. 4, 2009) – Below is a look at the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series top 12, along with other notable drivers, going into the Heluva Good! Sour Cream Dips at The Glen at Watkins Glen International on August 9. (Note: Drivers listed below who are outside the top 12 are chosen based on past performances at the upcoming track and/or are within striking distance of the top 12.)

1 – Tony Stewart (No. 14 Office Depot/Old Spice Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 105.0
2009 Rundown
• Two wins, 12 top fives, 17 top 10s
• Average finish of 7.5
• Led 12 races for 239 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• Four wins, six top fives, eight top 10s
• Average finish of 5.7
• Finished second in last season’s Watkins Glen races
• Led six of 10 races for 191 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Series-best Pass Differential of 249 (passes minus times passed)

2 – Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 110.7
2009 Rundown
• Three wins, nine top fives, 14 top 10s
• Average finish of 11.0
• Led 17 races for 991 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• Three top fives, four top 10s
• Average finish of 13.1
• Finished seventh last season
• Led four of seven races for six laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Series-best Average Running Position of 8.5

3 – Jeff Gordon (No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 101.6
2009 Rundown
• One win, 10 top fives, 15 top 10s
• Average finish of 10.0
• Led 11 races for 570 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• Four wins, six fives, eight top 10s; two poles
• Average finish of 13.4
• Finished 29th last season
• Led nine of 16 races for 227 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 385 Fastest Laps Run, second-most

4 – Kurt Busch (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 99.3
2009 Rundown
• One win, six top fives, 11 top 10s
• Average finish of 13.0
• Led 12 races for 368 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• Two top 10s
• Average finish of 21.4
• Finished 10th last season
• Led two of eight races for 39 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Average Running Position of 10.7, third-best

5 – Denny Hamlin (No. 11 FedEx Toyota)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 98.9
2009 Rundown
• One win, seven top fives, nine top 10s
• Average finish of 13.8
• Led nine races for 668 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• One top five, three top 10s
• Average finish of 6.7 in three races
• Finished eighth last season
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Average Running Position of 12.4, sixth-best

6 – Carl Edwards (No. 99 Aflac Ford)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 93.7
2009 Rundown
• Five top fives, nine top 10s
• Average finish of 13.7
• Led eight races for 158 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• One top five, three top 10s
• Average finish of 10.3 in four races
• Finished ninth last season
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Average Running Position of 12.3, fifth-best

7 – Kasey Kahne (No. 9 Budweiser Dodge)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 90.1
2009 Rundown
• One win, four top fives, nine top 10s
• Average finish of 14.0
• Led five races for 120 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• Average finish of 18.6 in five races
• Finished 14th last season
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 174 Fastest Laps Run, 10th-most

8 – Juan Pablo Montoya (No. 42 Target Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 87.3
2009 Rundown
• One top five, 10 top 10s
• Average finish of 13.7
• Led five races for 133 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• One top five
• Average finish of 21.5
• Finished fourth last season
• Led one of two races for two laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 1,936 Green Flag Passes, second-most

9 – Ryan Newman (No. 39 U.S. Army Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 82.4
2009 Rundown
• Five top fives, nine top 10s
• Average finish of 14.5
• Led 10 races for 156 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• One top five, three top 10s
• Average finish of 16.3
• Finished 26th last season
• Led two of seven races for 19 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Has run 82.6% of the laps on the lead lap, 12th-best

10 – Mark Martin (No. 5 Kellogg’s/CARQUEST Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 97.4
2009 Rundown
• Four wins, six top fives, 11 top 10s
• Average finish of 16.2
• Led 12 races for 438 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• Three wins, 12 top fives, 16 top 10s; three poles
• Average finish of 6.9
• Finished 20th in 2006, his last race at Watkins Glen
• Led six of 19 races for 204 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Has been passed 850 times, fewest in the series

11 – Matt Kenseth (No. 17 DEWALT Ford)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 84.4 
2009 Rundown
• Two wins, four top fives, eight top 10s
• Average finish of 15.6
• Led nine races for 188 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• Three top 10s
• Average finish of 16.2
• Finished 12th last season
• Led one of nine races for one lap
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 1,758 Green Flag Passes, seventh-most

12 – Greg Biffle (No. 16 3M Ford)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 89.6
2009 Rundown
• Six top fives, nine top 10s
• Average finish of 15.5
• Led nine races for 355 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• One top 10
• Average finish of 28.7
• Finished 21st last season
• Led one of six races for 23 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 364 Fastest Laps Run, third-most

13 – Kyle Busch (No. 18 M&M’s Toyota)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 98.5
2009 Rundown
• Three wins, four top fives, six top 10s
• Average finish of 18.0
• Led 11 races for 809 laps
Watkins Glen International Outlook:
• One win, three top 10s
• Average finish of 12.5
• Won last season’s race
• Led one of four races for 52 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 254 Fastest Laps Run, seventh-most

Chase Contenders

 

The Top 12 … And Beyond Following Race 21 of 36

 

 

 

Rank Season
Last Driver
Driver                         Points   Wins     Poles      Week      Rating

 

 

1. Tony Stewart            3,188       2           0              1           105.0

 

2. Jimmie Johnson        2,991       3           0              2           110.7

 

3. Jeff Gordon               2,989       1           0              3           101.6

 

4. Kurt Busch               2,751       1           0              4             99.3

 

5. Denny Hamlin           2,713       1           0              6             98.9

 

6. Carl Edwards            2,665       0           0              5             93.7

 

7. Kasey Kahne            2,642       1           0              8             90.1

 

8. Juan Pablo Montoya  2,631       0                       10            87.3

 

9. Ryan Newman          2,627       0           1                          82.4

 

  10. Mark Martin             2,622       4           4               9            97.4

 

  11. Matt Kenseth           2,564       2           1             12            84.4

 

  12. Greg Biffle                2,563       0                       11            89.6

 

        ___________________________________________________

 

 

ADDITIONAL DRIVERS

 

 

13. Kyle Busch           2,462                        34. Robby Gordon       1,672

 

14. Brian Vickers        2,459                        35. Scott Speed          1,437

 

15. Clint Bowyer         2,448                        36. John Andretti         1,419       

 

16. David Reutimann   2,442                        37. David Gilliland        1,187

 

17. Jeff Burton            2,301                        38. Regan Smith            989 

 

18. Marcos Ambrose   2,241                        39. Joe Nemechek         798 

 

19. Joey Logano         2,165                        40. Brad Keselowski       787 

 

20. Jamie McMurray    2,163                        41. Dave Blaney            736 

 

21. Casey Mears        2,086                        42. Bill Elliott                 622          

 

22. Kevin Harvick        2,066                        43. Max Papis               502          

 

23. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 2,062                        44. Aric Almirola            451

 

24. Martin Truex Jr.     2,038                        45. Scott Riggs             448

 

25. Elliott Sadler         2,015                        46. Tony Raines            389

 

26. AJ Allmendinger    1,985                        47. Travis Kvapil            292

 

27. Sam Hornish Jr.    1,966                        48. Jeremy Mayfield      288

 

28. Reed Sorenson     1,941                        49. Patrick Carpentier    287

 

29. Bobby Labonte      1,928                        50. Sterling Marlin         258

 

30. David Ragan          1,896                        51. Mike Bliss              243

 

31. David Stremme      1,766                        52. Terry Labonte          155

 

32. Paul Menard          1,723                        53. Mike Skinner          126

 

33. Michael Waltrip      1,712                        54. Todd Bodine           123

 

 

Note: The first 26 races of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season determine which 12 drivers qualify for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, contested over the final 10 races of the season.

 




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Keeping Pace

Motorsports correspondent Doug Pace keeps up with motorsports news and notes from around the region.





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