ITS THE LAST RACE - THE END OF THE CHASE.... WELL ALL LETS CHASE JIMMIE....
Here are a few short Cliff notes for whats on the line this weekend at the last race of the 2013 NASCAR season...
NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES – FORD EC0BOOST 400, SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 3 P.M. ET ON ESPN
Johnson Nears Sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Title
Jimmie Johnson’s drive to the cusp of a sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship has been nothing short of spectacular. His 28-point lead has been built via an average finish of 4.7 through the Chase’s first nine races, a record pace. Regardless of what anyone else does, Johnson can capture the title by finishing 23rd or better in Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400; 24th or better if he leads a lap and 25th or better if he leads the most laps.
Kenseth Faces Deficit But Runners-Up Have Prevailed Before
Matt Kenseth faces a huge handicap heading to Homestead-Miami Speedway. The second-place driver entering the season finale has won the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship before but Kenseth’s 28-point deficit is far greater than the 15 points Jimmie Johnson overcame in 2010 and the three points Tony Stewart erased the following season. NASCAR Sprint Cup history’s biggest comeback is 30 points – roughly seven under the current system – by Alan Kulwicki in 1992.
Harvick’s Title Bid Tenuous But He’s Still Got A Chance
It may be a longshot, but Kevin Harvick could win his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship in his final race with Richard Childress Racing thanks to the Bakersfield, Calif., veteran’s fourth victory of the season on Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway. Harvick enters the final race of the 2013 season 34 points behind Chase leader Jimmie Johnson. He trails second-place Matt Kenseth by six points and by taking another position Harvick would post the highest championship finish of his NASCAR Sprint Cup career.
Homestead Last Chance To Extend Victory Streaks
Four drivers who won in 2012 – but haven’t visited Victory Lane this season – have one final chance to extend victory streaks. Denny Hamlin has won at least once in seven consecutive seasons from 2006-2012 and won at Homestead-Miami Speedway in 2009. Clint Bowyer’s run from 2010-12 is three years. Marcos Ambrose has a two-season streak from 2011-2012. Dale Earnhardt Jr. hopes to add a victory – his 20th – for a second consecutive year.
Biffle Can Improve Chase Standing With Third Homestead Victory
Greg Biffle likely won’t rank this year’s Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup™ among his top racing memories. Biffle heads to the season finale ranked seventh in points. The Washington native, however, could reach the final NASCAR Sprint Cup Series top five with a victory in the Ford EcoBoost 400 – a race he won in 2004 and 2006 as a non-Chase qualifier. Sixteen different drivers have won during the 2013 season, one more than a year ago.
NASCAR NATIONWIDE SERIES – FORD ECOBOOST 300, SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 16, 4:30 P.M. ET ON ESPN2
History On Dillon’s Side
If history repeats itself, Austin Dillon is in good company. Much like he did in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Dillon is poised to capture the series title the year following his Sunoco Rookie of the Year campaign. Dillon holds a mere eight-point lead over Sam Hornish Jr. in the NASCAR Nationwide Series title hunt. The 23-year-old North Carolina native would become the third-youngest series champion behind Brian Vickers (20) and Rob Moroso (21).