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Keeping Pace

Week 16: The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Top 12 – And Beyond

A look at the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series top 12, along with other notable drivers, going into the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway on June 21.


Courtesy: NASCAR Media Relations

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (June 15, 2009) – Below is a look at the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series top 12, along with other notable drivers, going into the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway on June 21. (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: 101.6
2009 Rundown
• One win, seven top fives, 11 top 10s
• Average finish of 8.9
• Led seven races for 99 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• Two wins, three top fives, six top 10s; one pole
• Average finish of 10.0
• Finished 10th last season
• Led seven of 10 races for 66 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Average Running Position of 10.2, second-best

2 – Jeff Gordon (No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 103.4
2009 Rundown
• One win, eight top fives, 10 top 10s
• Average finish of 10.2
• Led nine races for 505 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• Five wins, 10 top fives, 12 top 10s; five poles
• Average finish of 9.3
• Finished third last season
• Led nine of 16 races for 437 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 326 Fastest Laps Run, third-most

3 – Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 107.9
2009 Rundown
• Two wins, six top fives, nine top 10s
• Average finish of 12.9
• Led 13 races for 794 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• One top five, two top 10s
• Average finish of 19.3
• Finished 15th last season
• Led three of seven races for 30 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Series-best Average Running Position of 8.6

4 – Kurt Busch (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 100.1
2009 Rundown
• One win, four top fives, eight top 10s
• Average finish of 13.1
• Led eight races for 324 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• Three top fives; one pole
• Average finish of 19.1
• Finished 32nd last season
• Led three of eight races for 60 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Average Running Position of 10.3, third-best

5 – Ryan Newman (No. 39 U.S. Army Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 83.0
2009 Rundown
• Five top fives, eight top 10s
• Average finish of 13.6
• Led eight races for 138 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• Two top fives, five top 10s
• Average finish of 9.4
• Finished seventh last season
• Led one of seven races for 11 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Has run 80.3% of the laps on the lead lap, 12th-best

6 – Carl Edwards (No. 99 Aflac Ford)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 95.3
2009 Rundown
• Four top fives, eight top 10s
• Average finish of 13.7
• Led eight races for 158 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• Two top 10s
• Average finish of 17.8
• Finished ninth last season
• Led two of four races for 14 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Average Running Position of 12.0, sixth-best

7 – Greg Biffle (No. 16 3M Ford)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 95.7
2009 Rundown
• Five top fives, eight top 10s
• Average finish of 14.1
• Led eight races for 354 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• Two top fives
• Average finish of 14.0
• Finished 11th last season
• Led two of six races for nine laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 340 Fastest Laps Run, second-most

8 – Mark Martin (No. 5 Kellogg’s/CARQUEST Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 97.9
2009 Rundown
• Three wins, four top fives, eight top 10s
• Average finish of 16.2
• Led eight races for 218 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• One win, seven top fives, 13 top 10s; one pole
• Average finish of 13.1
• Finished 13th in 2006, his last Infineon start
• Led five of 18 races for 161 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Has been passed 581 times, fewest in the series

9 – Kyle Busch (No. 18 M&M’s Toyota)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 103.2
2009 Rundown
• Three wins, four top fives, five top 10s
• Average finish of 16.5
• Led nine races for 798 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• One win, two top 10s
• Average finish of 15.0
• Won last season’s Infineon race
• Led one of four races for 78 laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 241 Fastest Laps Run, fifth-most

10 – Denny Hamlin (No. 11 FedEx Toyota)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 95.0
2009 Rundown
• Three top fives, five top 10s
• Average finish of 15.1
• Led five races for 480 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• One top 10
• Average finish of 16.3
• Finished 27th last season
• Led one of three races for three laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Average Running Position of 12.7, seventh-most

11 – Matt Kenseth (No. 17 DEWALT Ford)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 85.2 
2009 Rundown
• Two wins, four top fives, six top 10s
• Average finish of 15.7
• Led seven races for 184 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• One top 10
• Average finish of 21.8 in nine races
• Finished eighth last season
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 1,277 Green Flag Passes, sixth-most

12 – Jeff Burton (No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 81.2
2009 Rundown
• Two top fives, six top 10s
• Average finish of 15.0
• Led two races for 67 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• One top five, five tops 10s
• Average finish of 18.9
• Finished 13th last season
• Led one of 15 races for three laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Laps in the Top 15 percentage of 64.2%, ninth-best

13 – David Reutimann (No. 00 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 82.5
2009 Rundown
• One win, three top fives, four top 10s
• Average finish of 15.8
• Led five races for 72 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• Finished 40th last season, his only Infineon start
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• Average Running Position of 15.1, 10th-best

14 – Juan Pablo Montoya (No. 42 Target Chevrolet)
• Season-to-Date Driver Rating: 82.5
2009 Rundown
• Six top 10s
• Average finish of 15.8
• Led three races for 11 laps
Infineon Raceway Outlook:
• One win, two top 10s
• Average finish of 3.5
• Finished sixth last season
• Led one of two races for seven laps
Season-To-Date Loop Data Highlight
• 1,442 Green Flag Passes, second-most

Chase Contenders

 

The Top 12 … And Beyond Following Race 15 of 36

 

 

                                                                          Rank       Season
                                                                          Last         Driver
Driver                        Points  Wins      Poles      Week       Rating

 

 

1. Tony Stewart           2,189       1           0              1           101.6

 

2. Jeff Gordon              2,142       1           0              2           103.4

 

3. Jimmie Johnson       2,047       2           0              3           107.9

 

4. Kurt Busch              1,961       1           0              5           100.1

 

5. Ryan Newman         1,934       0           1              4             83.0

 

6. Carl Edwards           1,927       0           0              6             95.3

 

7. Greg Biffle               1,913       0           0              7             95.7

 

8. Mark Martin             1,868       3           3              13           97.9

 

9. Kyle Busch             1,860       3           1              9           103.2

 

  10. Denny Hamlin         1,849       0           0              12           95.0

 

  11. Matt Kenseth          1,848       2           1              8             85.2

 

  12. Jeff Burton              1,810       0           0              10            81.2

 

        ___________________________________________________

 

 

ADDITIONAL DRIVERS

 

 

13. David Reutimann   1,807                        34. Robby Gordon       1,213

 

14. J.P. Montoya        1,767                        35. Scott Speed          1,036

 

15. Kasey Kahne        1,719                        36. John Andretti           926          

 

16. Clint Bowyer         1,710                        37. David Gilliland          874 

 

17. Brian Vickers        1,674                        38. Regan Smith           734 

 

18. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 1,555                        39. Joe Nemechek         592 

 

19. Jamie McMurray    1,548                       40. Dave Blaney            514 

 

20. Marcos Ambrose   1,539                        41. Brad Keselowski     479 

 

21. Casey Mears        1,523                        42. Bill Elliott                461          

 

22. Martin Truex Jr.     1,502                        43. Aric Almirola           451          

 

23. Kevin Harvick        1,461                        44. Scott Riggs             448

 

24. Sam Hornish Jr.    1,447                        45. Max Papis              375

 

25. Joey Logano         1,445                        46. Travis Kvapil            292

 

26. Reed Sorenson     1,444                        47. Jeremy Mayfield      288

 

27. Elliott Sadler         1,436                        48. Tony Raines           239

 

28. David Ragan          1,383                        49. Sterling Marlin       209

 

29. Bobby Labonte      1,371                        50. Mike Bliss             200

 

30. Michael Waltrip      1,338                        51. Todd Bodine         123

 

31. AJ Allmendinger     1,321                        52. Terry Labonte         91

 

32. David Stremme      1,316                        53. Dexter Bean           55

 

33. Paul Menard          1,237                        54. Mike Skinner          40

 

 

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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