Wednesday, June 5, 2013
NASCAR Top 10 Power Rankings: Week 13
Note: the quotes in this article are fictional.
1. Jimmie Johnson — Johnson was black-flagged for jumping the final restart at Dover, a mistake that most likely cost him his third win this season. After serving a drive-through penalty, Johnson finished 17th, one lap down.
"Much like NASCAR did by allowing the NRA to sponsor a race," Johnson said, "I jumped the gun. Needless to say, I won't be exchanging pleasantries with NASCAR any time soon. We're certainly not 'BFFs.' After getting black flagged, it appears I got 'BF-F'd.'
"I don't agree with the call. Obviously, it's NASCAR's last-ditch effort to add some color to the sport."
2. Matt Kenseth — Kenseth's day ended abruptly in Dover, as his engine blew on lap 159 with the lead. He finished 40th, his worst finish of the year, and fell one spot in the point standings to fourth, 74 behind Jimmie Johnson.
"That's not the first engine to blow," Kenseth said. "If it's not our engine, it's our 'suspension' holding us back. What do our engine and 'suspension' have in common? They both will 'expire' soon."
"But there's one good thing about blowing an engine. The faulty parts get burned beyond recognition. Ha! Take that, NASCAR inspectors."
3. Carl Edwards — Edwards finished 14th at Dover, as Roush Fenway Racing cars all finished in the top 15. Edwards remained second in the point standings, 30 out of first.
"Roush cars took the 13th, 14th, and 15th spots," Edwards said. "All week long, Ricky Stenhouse has been singing Al Green's 'Let's Stay Together.' I guess Greg Biffle and I thought he was singing to us.
"But it remains to be seen what lasts longer for Stenhouse — his relationship, or his manhood."
4. Kyle Busch — Busch led a race-high 150 laps and finished fourth in the FedEx 400 at Dover International Raceway, posting his sixth top-five of the year. He is ninth in the Sprint Cup point standings, and trails Jimmie Johnson by 99.
"NASCAR races will soon be covered on TNT," Busch said. "Interestingly enough, that's home to the series Falling Skies. FOX recently became the home to a new series — Falling Cables."
5. Clint Bowyer — Bowyer came home fourth at Dover, scoring the top finish for Michael Waltrip Racing. He moved up one spot to third in the point standings, and is 50 out of first.
"We're still searching for our first win of the year," Bowyer said. "It's not a matter of 'if,' it's a matter of 'when.' That also applies to the matter of whether a Toyota engine will explode. In that respect, Toyota's got a lot of 'whens' this year."
6. Kevin Harvick — After winning in Charlotte last week, Harvick finished eighth at Dover for his fifth top-10 result of the year. He is now fourth in the Sprint Cup point standings, 74 out of first.
"The finish at Dover begs the question," Harvick said. "Who's faster? Jimmy John's or Jimmie Johnson. All I know is that Jimmy John's, unlike Jimmie Johnson, can't get their too fast."
7. Kasey Kahne — Kahne led two laps early and was headed for a sure top-10 finish before a late incident left him with rear-end damage. He finished 23rd, four laps down, and fell two spots to seventh in the point standings, 81 out of first.
"Have you heard?" Kahne said. "There's a new swimsuit calendar coming out featuring 12 of NASCAR's sexiest inspectors in bikinis. It's called 'Sanctioning Bodies.'"
8. Brad Keselowski — Keselowski posted his first top-10 finish since Kansas with a fifth at Dover. The defending Sprint Cup champion is now eighth in the point standings, 98 behind Jimmie Johnson.
"I'm well behind Johnson," Keselowski said, "and my car failed post-race inspection at Dover. I'm the defending Cup champion, but I'm not driving like it. I don't know who's 'come down' harder this year — NASCAR or me.
"NASCAR said the front of our car was too low, and I was penalized for it. That's odd, because as A.J. Allmendinger found out, Penske drivers are often penalized for being too high."
9. Tony Stewart — Stewart benefitted on Jimmie Johnson's black flag and caught Juan Montoya with three laps to go to win the FedEx 400 at Dover. The win ended a four-month winless drought, and moved Stewart up to 16th in the point standings.
"I like my wins like I like my food," Stewart said. "Served on a silver platter. And apparently, I like my wins like I like my women — single. And I like my wins like I like my engines — gift-wrapped from Hendrick Motorsports."
10. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. — Earnhardt posted a quiet 10th-place finish at Dover, collecting his eighth top-10 of the year. He remained sixth in the point standings, where he trails Jimmie Johnson by 75.
"I still feel like we're building on something here," Earnhardt said. "Unfortunately, it's another long winless streak."