NASCAR Top 10 Power Rankings: Week 5

Note: the quotes in this article are fictional.

1. Jeff Gordon — After starting on the pole, Gordon immediately slipped back, falling outside the top 20 at one point before rallying to finish third. Gordon and crew were unable to pinpoint the problem during the race, although later, upon further inspection after the race, it was revealed to be a braking problem.

"Yeah, we found St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa passed out in the car with his foot on the brake," explains Gordon. "It looks like Tony missed a signal at that stop light in Florida. I guess it could have been worse; it could have been a hit and run. Anyway, I'm happy to come out of Bristol with the points lead. Now, if everyone would pull a Mark Martin and run just a partial schedule, I'm guaranteed to win the Cup."

2. Jeff Burton — Burton picked up his fourth top-five finish of the year with a second in Bristol, losing by a fraction of a second to Kyle Busch. Earlier this year in a Busch race in Las Vegas, Burton spun Busch out of the lead and took the win, but Burton was determined not to wreck Busch should he try a winning pass.

"That's got to be a first for a Bristol race," says Burton. "A driver explaining why he didn't wreck another driver for the win. Yeah, I know, Dale Earnhardt, Sr. would be disgusted, but I've already wrecked Kyle once this year. I guess I'm one of the few, if only, drivers who prefers a clean conscience over a tainted victory. And I think my brother, Wadd Button, would feel the same way."

3. Jimmie Johnson — After winning the last two Nextel Cup races, Johnson's hopes in Bristol were high, but a flat tire 17 laps from the finish ended his dash for at least a top-10 result. He was able to make it to the pits for repairs, but lost a lap and finished 16th.

"A car with three wheels definitely won't get you in the winner's circle at Bristol," says Johnson. "But it might get you on ABC's Dancing With the Stars. And it will still probably outrun a Toyota driven by Michael Waltrip."

4. Matt Kenseth — On his way to an 11th-place finish in the Food City 500, Kenseth rankled the aging feathers of 1999 Cup champion Dale Jarrett when he wrecked the No. 44 UPS Toyota. Before heading to the care center, Jarrett stared down Kenseth, and later insisted that the two would have a "discussion."

"Sure, we'll have a 'discussion,'" says Kenseth. "And when we do, I'll ask Dale the question that everyone's been dying to ask: 'How the heck did you ever win a Cup championship?' I need those slower cars out of my way. Doesn't Dale realize he drives a Toyota? Here's a joke: if UPS wants to send DJ's Toyota from the start to finish line, how do they ship it? Overnight. That car is slow!"

5. Tony Stewart — Stewart was obviously well-prepared for Bristol, qualifying fourth and taking the lead early, all while proudly wearing his new "Stone Cold" Steve Austin wife-beater, which boldly stated that he would, "Arrive. Raise Hell. Leave," underneath his driver's suit. Stewart was 100% whoop ass from the start, charging into the lead on lap seven and leading 257 laps on the day. However, a faulty fuel pump stunned him on lap 289, and he finished 35th, 25 laps down.

"Hey, what can you do about a mechanical failure," says Stewart. "I don't know who supplies our parts, but I've got a feeling one of those danged Pep Boys had something to do with this, probably the geeky one with glasses. I'll just head to Martinsville and win the race like I did last year."

6. Kyle Busch — Busch held off Jeff Burton to claim victory in Bristol, thereby becoming the first driver to win driving the Car of Tomorrow. Busch beat Burton across the line by less than a second, giving Hendrick Motorsports its 200th win, then bashed the Car of Tomorrow, claiming it "stinks."

"Not 'stink' as in 'smells bad,' like Jimmy Spencer after four hours at Daytona in July, as my brother Kurt would say. But 'stinks' as in 'difficult to drive.' Which is just a sneaky way of me saying that I'm a great driver. If a car is difficult to drive, and I win the race, doesn't that make me a great driver? Anyway, the COT needs more pimpin' before I'll be happy with it."

7. Clint Bowyer — Bowyer joined Richard Childress teammates Jeff Burton and Kevin Harvick in Bristol's top 10 with an eighth in the Food City 500. It was Bowyer's third top 10 of the year, and second in a row, and he moved up to eighth in the points, 170 behind Jeff Gordon.

"It would have been nice if the old No. 7 could have pulled out a victory for Jack Daniels here in Tennessee," says Bowyer, often described as 'charcoal mellow' behind the wheel. "We had quite a few of the boys from the distillery in the crowd cheering us own, most notably their most famous employee, Whiskey Dick."

8. Kevin Harvick — Harvick grabbed his first top-five since his dramatic win at Daytona, finishing fourth at Bristol in the new-generation Chevrolet Impala SS Car of Tomorrow. Harvick now sits fifth in the points, 144 out of first.

"It's nice to see the Impala back on the track," says Harvick, "although a lot has changed since the Impala was leaving skid marks on the road 40 years ago. Today, when you mention the term 'V8' to an Impala driver, he/she thinks of a tomato beverage instead of an engine."

9. Carl Edwards — Edwards took 12th in the Food City 500 after dominating the Busch Series' Sharpie Mini 300 on Saturday, leading 147 of 300 laps. The, just as he was preparing for his trademark backflip off his car, ABC ended it's broadcast. Instead of a backflip, viewers were treated to an infomercial for an amazing new product called a "broom" that does some type of cleaning function called "sweeping."

"Don't knock the infomercials, fella," says Edwards, also known for his dismount from the balance beam back in his days as a gymnast. "There's great deals to be had on television, like the 44-piece Carl Edwards dinnerware set, yours for nine easy payments of $19.95 plus $89.00 shipping and handling."

10. Mark Martin — Vigorously adhering to his decision not to run a full Cup schedule, Martin sat out the Bristol race to attend more pressing matters, like tooling around the nation in a Volkswagen van to follow the Grateful Dead. In all seriousness, though, Martin did not miss racing at Bristol, despite falling from first to seventh in the points.

"I didn't miss racing at all," says Martin, who hit 165 miles per hour in the family minivan heading in to Bristol on Interstate 81. "My goal at the beginning of the year was to outscore Michael Waltrip. It looks like I could have done that by not racing at all. Zero points beats minus 27, right?"

Comments and Conversation

March 30, 2007

Ken Walker:

I really detest attempts at humor by sports wirtiers because the vast majority are humorous only to the writer. However, you are consistently excellent. Keep up the great work!

March 26, 2008


i really love nascar and my mom dose too we love dale jr


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