NASCAR Top 10 Power Rankings: Week 34

Note: the quotes in this article are fictional.

1. Jimmie Johnson — With his place in the Chase finale set, Johnson cruised to a 11th-place finish at Texas.

"All I heard during race week was 'Don't mess with Texas,'" Johnson said. "Well, I was happy not to."

2. Carl Edwards — Edwards beat martin Truex, Jr. out of the pits on the race's final stop and was declared the winner when rain ended the AAA Texas 500. Edwards joins Jimmie Johnson as qualifiers for the Chase finale at Homestead.

"I decided to forgo my celebratory backflip," Edwards said, "with the hopes I'll be able to do it at Homestead. That's a 'flip-flop' worthy of election season."

3. Joey Logano — Logano led 178 of 293 laps at Texas and finished second.

"We had to sit out a rain delay before the race," Logano said. "A six-hour rain delay, to be exact. When there's rain in the sky, and NASCAR fans have nothing to do but wait, you can be certain it was 'pouring.'"

4. Denny Hamlin — Hamlin finished ninth at Texas as Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Carl Edwards took the rain-shortened win.

"Phoenix will be pressure-filled," Hamlin said. "And pressure-packed. Nerves will be a factor. But I can tell you, every part of my body possesses the competitive spirit. Even my heart will be racing."

5. Matt Kenseth — Kenseth took seventh in the AAA Texas 500, and now sits one point behind Joey Logano among drivers who haven't clinched a spot in the Chase For The Cup final round.

"Congratulations to Carl Edwards," Kenseth said. "One of the spoils of victory at Texas is a black cowboy hat. Take it from me, just because he's wearing a black hat doesn't make Carl a bad guy. Carl was a bad guy before he put on hat."

6. Kyle Busch — Busch posted his 16th top-five finish with a fifth at Texas. Busch is tied with Joey Logano, one up on Matt Kenseth, and two ahead of Denny Hamlin.

"Two spots for Homestead have been filled," Busch said, "and two remain. Two plus two equals four. Let's just hope that '4' isn't Kevin Harvick. Somehow, mysteriously, Harvick always seems to find a way to win at Phoenix. No one can even catch him. In other words, he doesn't 'get caught.'"

7. Kevin Harvick — Harvick finished sixth at Texas and will likely need a win at Phoenix to advance.

"I'm extremely worried that I won't advance to have a chance to win the Sprint Cup championship," Harvick said. "You could say I'm a 'wreck.' Some drivers, noting my history of avoiding elimination, would say I'm a 'wreck waiting to happen.'"

8. Kurt Busch — Busch finished 20th, one lap down, in the AAA Texas 500, and now needs a win at Phoenix to be eligible for the championship at the Chase finale at Homestead.

"My back is against the wall," Busch said. "But it's a familiar situation. Usually, that happens when a rival driver I've pissed off jacks me up."

9. Brad Keselowski — Keselowski finished 14th in the rain-delayed and rain-shortened AAA Texas 500.

"There's been a lot of talk about concussions," Keselowski said. "Actually, I think I'd like to have a concussion, because there are a lot of recent memories I'd like to forget."

10. Martin Truex, Jr. — Truex finished third at Texas, posting his eighth top-five of the year.

"Dale Earnhardt, Jr. was pulled over for speeding while on his way to Texas Motor Speedway," Truex said. "Let's hope that this instance of Junior getting 'clocked' doesn't cause a concussion."

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