NASCAR Power Rankings: Kyle Larson finishes year No. 1


Kyle Larson completed a dominant season by winning the Cup title Sunday to finish the season No. 1 in the NBC Sports NASCAR Power Rankings.

Larson’s victory at Phoenix was his 10th of the season, making him the first driver to win as many races since Jimmie Johnson in 2007.

Joey Logano made it back into the top 10, knocking out Christopher Bell.

NASCAR Power Rankings after Phoenix  

1. Kyle Larson (Last week: No. 1) — To the champion go the spoils. He won five of the 10 playoff races, tying Tony Stewart’s record in 2011. Larson won four of the last five races of the season. He led a record 1,015 laps in the playoffs. Larson finished the season with 10 points wins and added a victory in the All-Star Race. He led 2,581 laps, the most laps led in a season since Jeff Gordon led 2,610 laps in 1995.

2. Denny Hamlin (Last week: No. 2) — Falls short of winning a championship again, but he finished with 1,502 laps led and 25 top 10s, his most in a season. He finished with 19 top fives to tie his best mark in that category. Hamlin scored two wins, both in the playoffs.

3. Martin Truex Jr. (Last week: No. 4) — He won four races this season and finished second in the points for the third time in the last four seasons. He had 13 top fives and 20 top 10s this season.

4. Chase Elliott (Last week: No. 3) — He won two races. His 15 top fives tied his career best. He had 21 top 10s.

5. Kevin Harvick (Last week: No. 5) — Finished fifth in the points. After winning nine times in 2020, he failed to win a Cup race in 2021. It’s his first winless season since 2009. He had 10 top fives and 24 top 10s.

6. Ryan Blaney (Last week: No. 8) — Won a career-high three times this season. He had 11 top fives and 20 top 10s.

7. Kyle Busch (Last week: No. 6) — Won two races. Scored 14 top fives and 22 top 10s.

8. William Byron (Last week: No. 7) — Won once. Had 12 top fives and 20 top 10s.

9. Joey Logano (Last week: Unranked) — Won once. Had 10 top fives and 19 top 10s.

10. Alex Bowman (Last week: No. 10) —  Won a career-high four races but inconsistency was a key. He had eight top fives and 16 top 10s.

Dropped out: Christopher Bell (Last week: No. 9)