Wednesday, September 27, 2017

NASCAR Top 10 Power Rankings: Week 28

By Jeffrey Boswell

Note: the quotes in this article are fictional.

1. Martin Truex, Jr. — Truex won Stage 1 at Loudon and finished fifth in the ISM Connect 300.

"I barely made it through Kevin Harvick's smoky wreck," Truex said. "Normally, you don't see a smokescreen like that unless it's NASCAR throwing a bogus late caution flag to cause a restart and prevent a certain driver from winning by a large margin."

2. Kyle Busch — Busch won the pole at New Hampshire and took Stage 2 on his way to the win at New Hampshire.

"I punched my ticket to the next round of the Chase," Busch said, "which may be the only thing I've actually ever punched in my life."

3. Kyle Larson — Larson started on the front row at Loudon and finished second behind Kyle Busch.

"It was a warm day in New Hampshire," Larson said. "But that wasn't the reason a lot of drivers were perspiring. After the race at Dover next week, four drivers will be eliminated, and the field will be narrowed from 16 to 12. So, for the four at the bottom, it's gonna be all she wrote. We call those for drivers the 'Rear Enders.'"

4. Brad Keselowski — Keselowski finished fourth at New Hampshire, posting his 12th top-10 of the year.

"Joey Logano failed inspection four times before qualifying on Friday," Keselowski said. "So NASCAR made him drive to pit road and sit in his car. Joey called it a 'joke'; he started 39th, so I guess NASCAR had the 'last' laugh."

5. Denny Hamlin — Hamlin finished a solid 12th at Loudon as Joe Gibbs Racing cars took three of the top six spots.

"I have an unreasonable fear of lobster," Hamlin said. "That makes me chicken."

6. Matt Kenseth — Kenseth finished third at New Hampshire, posting his eighth top-five of the year.

"Poor Joey Logano," Kenseth said. "He had to sit in his car while qualifying was taking place. It must have been a helpless feeling. Trust me, I know the feeling. It's the one I gave Logano two years ago at Martinsville."

7. Jimmie Johnson — Johnson finished 14th in the ISM Connect 300.

"There's a lot of talk about the national anthem in sports today," Johnson said. "Richard Childress and Richard Petty were quite adamant about their feelings, while Dale Earnhardt, Jr. tweeted his feelings supporting the right to peacefully protest. That must have put the people of Junior Nation in quite a dilemma, because for them, if it's a matter of sitting or standing, it often involves a visit to the Port-A-Potty."

8. Kevin Harvick — Harvick spun with a lap to go in Stage 2 after contact with Austin Dillon. The wreck created a huge plume of smoke, and Kurt Busch rammed Harvick's No. 4, ending the day for both cars.

"I've had issues with Dillon before," Harvick said. "He's the grandson of Richard Childress; I've mentioned before that Austin was raised with a silver spoon in his mouth. I'm so angry with him, I'd like to fork him up."

9. Jamie McMurray — McMurray finished 16th at New Hampshire.

"NASCAR car owners have made it clear they won't tolerate a driver who won't rise for the national anthem," McMurray said. "In other words, they won't stand for it."

10. Chase Elliott — Elliott finished 11th at Loudon and now stands eighth in the Monster Energy Cup points standings.

"I was penalized for 'illegal modifications at Chicagoland," Elliott said. "We got caught removing tape from the spoiler, but only because some fans saw us doing it. I think the lesson learned is we should 'stick' to the rules."

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