Monday, July 3, 2017
NASCAR Top 10 Power Rankings: Week 17
Note: the quotes in this article are fictional.
1. Kyle Larson — Larson crashed on lap 193 in the Coke Zero 400 when he slipped in front of Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., and the impact briefly sent Larson airborne. Larson finished
"That's not the only thing that went airborne," Larson said. "My testicles went skyward as well. Talk about an 'aero package.'"
2. Martin Truex, Jr. — Truex's day at Daytona ended on lap 71 after he was collected in an accident triggered by Kyle Busch's spin. Truex finished 34th.
"I was just a victim of circumstances," Truex said. "And those circumstances involved Kyle Busch spinning out of control. But it could have been worse. The only thing worse that Busch physically spinning out of control is Busch mentally spinning out of control. That happens a lot more."
3. Kevin Harvick — Harvick's Daytona race ended on lap 106 when he blew a right rear tire and slid into traffic, damaging the No. 4 Jimmy Johns Chevrolet. Harvick finished 33rd.
"When you blow a tire at nearly 200 miles per hour," Harvick said, "there's not much you can do. You're basically at the mercy of a car you have no control over. It's kind of like what driving for Richard Childress Racing must be like today."
4. Jimmie Johnson — Johnson finished 12th at Daytona and now holds seventh place in the Monster Energy Cup points standings.
"I wore a helmet sporting the likenesses of Darrell Waltrip and Bobby Allison," Johnson said. "They have 84 career Cup wins, and I'm only one win away from joining that group. It's awesome to be mentioned amongst those two NASCAR legends, but I haven't let it go to my head ... until now, that is."
5. Kyle Busch — Busch finished 20th at Daytona.
"Daniel Suarez really came through on an otherwise tough day for Joe Gibbs Racing," Busch said. "The rookie finished 17th. Daniel is from Mexico, and his presence in the sport has really opened a new demographic for NASCAR. That's gonna take your typical NASCAR fan some getting used to. To them, the 'Hispanic Market' is a specialized convenience store."
6. Brad Keselowski — After spinning on a lap 106 accident, Keselowski hit the wall on lap 118, ending the day for Penske Racing after teammate Joey Logano crashed out on lap 71.
"Congratulations to Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.," Keselowski said. "That's his second restrictor plate race win this season after winning at Daytona. He got a kiss from his girlfriend Danica Patrick in Victory Lane after the race. Danica absolutely loves it when her boyfriend wins, because it gives her a reason to be in Victory Lane."
7. Chase Elliott — Elliott finished 22nd in the Coke Zero 400, battling back after a lengthy slide through the grass after contact with Trevor Bayne on lap 98.
"If you were listening to my radio feed," Elliott said, "you probably heard me curse when I spun. And if you're listening to my radio feed, you probably know I just signed a contract extension with Hendrick Motorsports. Together, those two facts mean I'm 'filthy rich.'"
8. Jamie McMurray — McMurray survived a chaotic Coke Zero 400 with a 14th at Daytona. He is eighth in the Monster Energy Cup points standings, 163 out of first.
"There were a number of wrecks that could be classified as the 'Big One,'" McMurray said. "But let's not kid ourselves. The real 'Big One' is McDonald's Dollar Menu. With food that cheap, you really don't need to restrict anything on your plate."
9. Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. — Stenhouse passed David Ragan with two laps to go and held on to win the Coke Zero 400. It was Stenhouse's second win this season.
"I was lucky to even be in the race at that point," Stenhouse said. "Kyle Larson wrecked in front of me on lap 193, but I didn't hit him because his car went airborne and sailed over me. I guess that gives new meaning to 'piloting' a race car."
10. Clint Bowyer — Bowyer took the runner-up spot in the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona, posting his fourth top-five of the year.
"Richard Petty turned 80 on July 2nd," Bowyer said. "Personally, I admire Richard. He's drove in an era when drivers were defined by toughness, guts, and a willingness to scrap for every inch. In those days, you had the 'King;' these days, Danica Patrick is certainly not the only driver classified as a 'princess.'"