Chase tracker: Kyle Busch moves closer to becoming Chase eligible

1 Comment

Twenty races have been run and six NASCAR Sprint Cup events remain until the Chase for the Sprint Cup field is set.

Sixteen drivers will advance to the Chase. Any driver with a victory, ranking in the top 30 in points and having started every race (unless granted a NASCAR waiver) will make the Chase. If there are more than 16 different winners, ties will be broken by number of wins and then points.

Kyle Busch remains outside the top 30 in points even after his win Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway – his fourth of the season. That leaves 10 winners in a Chase position and the final six spots for non-winners. Busch needs to average about a 24th-place finish in the remaining six races before the Chase to reach the projected total for 30th in the points and be Chase eligible.

Kurt Busch became the fourth driver to clinch a Chase spot (provided he starts the remaining six races).

Clint Bowyer passed Aric Almirola for the final Chase spot at this time. Jamie McMurray remains the winless driver with the most points with Jeff Gordon still second, but he saw his advantage on Ryan Newman, third among winless drivers in points, decline by 31 points.

Here’s who is Chase eligible at this point in the season (*clinched Chase spot):

1 – Jimmie Johnson (4 wins) … 675 points*

2 – Kevin Harvick (2 wins) … 777 points*

3 – Dale Earnhardt Jr. (2 wins) … 677 points*

4 – Kurt Busch (2 wins) … 612 points*

5 – Joey Logano (1 win) … 708 points

6 – Martin Truex Jr. (1 win) … 668 points

7 – Brad Keselowski (1 win) … 638 points

8 – Matt Kenseth (1 win) … 615 points

9 – Denny Hamlin (1 win) … 591 points

10 – Carl Edwards (1 win) … 519 points

11 – Jamie McMurray (0 wins) … 602 points

12 – Jeff Gordon (0 wins) … 575 points

13 – Ryan Newman (0 wins) … 563 points

14 – Paul Menard (0 wins) … 558 points

15 – Kasey Kahne (0 wins) … 558 points

16 – Clint Bowyer (0 wins) … 538 points

DRIVERS OUTSIDE A CHASE SPOT

17 – Aric Almirola (0 wins) … 30 points behind 16th

18 – Greg Biffle (0 wins) … 76 points behind 16th

19 – Austin Dillon (0 wins) … 85 points behind 16th

20 – Kyle Larson (0 wins) … 86 points behind 16th

21 – Casey Mears (0 wins) … 87 points behind 16th

22 – Danica Patrick (0 wins) … 105 points behind 16th

23 – AJ Allmendinger (0 wins) … 115 points behind 16th

24 – David Ragan (o wins) … 126 points behind 16th

25 – Sam Hornish Jr. (0 wins) … 153 points behind 16th

26 – Tony Stewart (0 wins) … 156 points behind 16th

27 – Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (0 wins) … 158 points behind 16th

28 – Trevor Bayne (0 wins) … 172 points behind 16th

29 – David Gilliland (0 wins) … 218 points behind 16th

30 – Justin Allgaier (0 wins) … 221 points behind 16th

WINNERS NOT IN TOP 30 IN POINTS

32 – Kyle Busch (4 wins) … 23 points behind 30th

 

Former NASCAR Chairman Brian France defends leadership style in interview

Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
1 Comment

Former NASCAR Chairman Brian France defended his leadership style when running the stock-car series and said in an interview with Sports Business Journal that he was working on leaving the sport before he was ousted after his DWI arrest in August 2018.

The interview with Sports Business Journal marked France’s first public comments since his arrest.

France became NASCAR Chairman and Chief Executive Officer in September 2003, assuming the position from his father, Bill France Jr.

Brian France held that position until Aug. 6, 2018, when he took a leave of absence after his arrest for driving while intoxicated in Sag Harbor, New York. He was replaced by Jim France and did not return to NASCAR.

Brian France pleaded guilty to driving while intoxicated in June 2019. As part of the agreement, he was required to complete 100 hours of community service and undergo alcohol counseling. If he completes those and does not run afoul of the law, his misdemeanor charge will be reduced to a non-criminal infraction in June 2020.

France told Sports Business Journal that he was actively talking to and identifying potential replacements before his arrest but did not go into detail.

France, who oversaw the TV deal with NBC and Fox that goes through 2024 and created what the Chase/playoff format, defended his absence from the track during his reign. France did not attend every race and that became an issue in the garage, raising questions about how involved he was with the sport.

“I understand that kind of criticism, but there is no other sports league that gets any criticism like that,” France told Sports Business Journal of the time he spent at the track. “I’ve always found that a bit interesting that no one else asks another commissioner how many football games or practices he made.”

Jim France is at the track nearly every weekend. Brian France told Sports Business Journal that while his uncle attends more races to match his objective, “(it) didn’t match up with mine, so I had to take the criticism on my way to managing the commercial side.”

France, who endorsed Donald Trump for president at a Feb. 29, 2016 rally at Valdosta State University in Georgia, accompanied President Trump on Air Force One to Daytona International Speedway on Sunday, according to the pool media report.

Monday’s Daytona 500: Restart time, weather and more

Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images
Leave a comment

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Let’s try this again.

After rain postponed Sunday’s race, Cup drivers will get back on track Monday at Daytona International Speedway to complete the Daytona 500. And the forecast looks very good for Monday’s race.

The race was halted after 20 of 180 laps with Ricky Stenhouse Jr. leading.

Here are today’s details:

(All times are Eastern)

RESTART: Command to fire engines at 4:05 p.m. The green flag is scheduled to wave at 4:12 p.m. 

DISTANCE: 180 of the scheduled 200 laps remain to be run on the 2.5-mile speedway.

STAGES: Stage 1 ends on Lap 65. Stage 2 ends on Lap 130.

TV/RADIO: Fox’s broadcast begins at 4 p.m. Motor Racing Network’s broadcast begins at 4 p.m. and also can be heard on mrn.com. SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry MRN’s broadcast.

FORECAST: The wunderground.com forecast calls for partly cloudy skies with a high of 73 degrees and a 3% chance of rain when the race resumes.

RUNNING ORDER:

  1. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  2. Joey Logano
  3. Aric Almirola
  4. Ryan Newman
  5. Kevin Harvick
  6. Brad Keselowski
  7. William Byron
  8. Jimmie Johnson
  9. Ty Dillon
  10. Timmy Hill
  11. David Ragan
  12. Chris Buescher
  13. Matt DiBenedetto
  14. Chase Elliott
  15. Ross Chastain
  16. Alex Bowman
  17. Kyle Larson
  18. Kurt Busch
  19. Austin Dillon
  20. Cole Custer
  21. Michael McDowell
  22. Tyler Reddick
  23. Ryan Blaney
  24. Bubba Wallace
  25. Reed Sorenson
  26. BJ McLeod
  27. Corey LaJoie
  28. Brendan Gaughan
  29. Ryan Preece
  30. Justin Haley
  31. Martin Truex Jr.
  32. Kyle Busch
  33. Erik Jones
  34. Christopher Bell
  35. Denny Hamlin
  36. Clint Bowyer
  37. John Hunter Nemechek
  38. Quin Houff
  39. Joey Gase
  40. Brennan Poole

Daytona 500 postponed to Monday

AP Photo/Terry Renna
Leave a comment

The Daytona 500 has been postponed until Monday, NASCAR announced Sunday evening.

The race is scheduled to take the green flag at 4:05 p.m. ET Monday. The garage will open at 1:30 p.m. The race will air on Fox.

The wunderground.com forecast calls for partly cloudy skies with a high of 72 degrees and an 11% chance of rain when the race is scheduled to resume.

The race was scheduled to take the green flag Sunday at 3:18 p.m. ET but that was pushed back because of President Donald Trump’s participation in ceremonies before the race. He gave the command to start engines and his motorcade led the field on a pace lap. An extra pace lap was done to honor Jimmie Johnson, who is making his final Daytona 500 start.

As the field was set to take the green flag at 3:29 p.m. ET, rain in Turns 1 and 2 prevented the start. Rain fell throughout the track and led to a 51-minute delay.

When the race resumed, the field completed 20 laps before rain led to a caution at 4:36 p.m. ET. The field again was brought to pit road and the race was stopped. NASCAR told teams they could uncover cars on pit road at 6:18 p.m. ET but almost immediately there were reports of rain drops around the track. Drivers were called to their cars but never got in them. It began to pour around 6:44 p.m. ET. The race was called at 6:50 p.m. ET

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. led the opening 20 laps. He is followed by Joey Logano, Aric Almirola, Ryan Newman and Kevin Harvick.

Sixth through 10th is Brad Keselowski, William Byron, Jimmie Johnson, Ty Dillon and Timmy Hill.

This is the second time the Daytona 500 has been postponed by rain. It happened in 2012.

Daytona 500 once again under rain delay

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Rain has once again put a damper on the 62nd Daytona 500.

The race got through the first 20 laps of the scheduled 200-lap event before the yellow flag came out, sending cars back to the pits.

Pole Sitter Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and his Chevrolet has led all laps since the green flag fell. Fords make up the next five spots (Joey Logano, Aric Almirola, Ryan Newman, Kevin Harvick and Brad Keselowski), while the highest Toyota’s driver — Martin Truex Jr. — is back in 31st place.

It was the second time rain has impacted the event. After seven pace laps, the start of the race was delayed for 51 minutes due to rain. Engines were re-fired at 4:14 p.m. ET

The race is airing on Fox.

We will keep you updated on the status of the race and when it resumes.