by Charlie Turner
Thanks for stopping by OnPitRow.com and the Bench Racing with Steve and Charlie blog. The best NASCAR and IndyCar news and opinion, exclusive pictures and video. I'm Charlie Turner. Follow me on Twitter @onpitrowJuly 25, 2008 10:55 am UTC 3 Comments
It’s Brickyard 400 weekend so put your hype hats on. Be prepared to be blasted with the history of Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Having been there a few times, I will say that Indy has a different feel than most race tracks. And no place looks quite like Indy.
But if you wrote an unbiased history of what the NASCAR racing has been like at the famous track, it would be more like the story of Millard Filmore than that of Abe Lincoln. Not real compelling.
But we’ll be watching. And someone is bound to get Loose in Turn 3, and slide up into the short shute wall.
Tony Stewart, currently tenth in Sprint Cup points, is 49 markers ahead of 13th place Clint Bowyer. Four drivers, icluding Denny Hamlin and Kasey Kahne, within 49 points of each other with only three spots up for grabs. Who doesn’t make it to the Chase?
Charlie: Everyone talks about this being Stewart’s time of the year. In the past, it has been. It didn’t happen for him at Chicagoland, but
betting against Smoke is tough. Kasey Kahne is the only two-time 2008 winner in the bunch, so I can’t take him out. Too many good Kahne tracks left on the schedule. Hamlin and Bowyer must be drawing confidence from their Nationwide Series years. The unsettledness of Stewart’s year is the deciding influence. I say that Tony will miss the Chase.
TZ: Great timing for this question, because I just talked about this on my site a few days ago, and without a race taking place between then and now, I can’t really backtrack on my answer. Charlie, you talk about how there’s plenty of Kahne tracks left on the schedule, but the funny thing is that Stewart’s actually won a Cup race at every track left except for Talladega, and there he has one of the top driver averages. With the weight of controversy off his shoulders, Stewart’s in by a long
shot and even competes for the championship. Kahne, on the other hand, has proven to me that he’s a very streaky driver, and he’s lost a lot of steam the past couple of weeks. I also haven’t been too impressed with Hamlin as of late, who to me still lacks a lot of discipline behind the wheel. I say Kahne and Hamlin are both out of the Chase, Clint Bowyer and Brian Vickers are in.
Roc: Well I sure wouldn’t bet against any of these drivers for the Chase but Tony will be in. Hamlin is not having the perfect year but his teammate is, so they have the cars to beat and he’ll be in there as well. My choice for the third spot is a little harder. I do like TZ dreaming of Vickers, but I think that Bowyer will also make the Chase. Kahne has had a good year but he always seems to find the bad
luck bug. Still think Stewart maybe one of the two or three drivers to beat for the championship. Tony has had a weight lifted off of his shoulders and with the Brickyard this weekend and the anouncement of his second driver maybe on friday I look for him to charge.
That’s what we think. What do you think?
And go over to TZ’s place tell us what you think about this…
NASCAR recently placed restrictions on the engines in the Nationwide Series, limiting the airflow, and therefore putting a restriction on the horesepower. Should we expect to see similar measures be implimented into the Sprint Cup Series, and if so, when?
Photo credit: BethAnne Heisler – ON PIT ROW