Friday, August 14, 2009

Crunching the Chase

I’m definitely not a fan of The Chase, mainly because the dude that works hard all season to earn a points lead basically gets shafted when the final ten races arrive. Last year it was Kyle Busch, and this year Tony Stewart will probably relinquish his respectable points lead to Mark Martin (or Jimmie Johnson?) once the Chase begins because the 5 car has taken the checkers the most (so far). Every other series uses a season long points system, and it seems to provide for some fairly exciting finishes.

But in the interest of positive discussion, I won’t whine about all of that, but instead look at which teams have the best chance to (1) actually get in The Chase and (2) ultimately challenge for the Sprint Cup title.

Of course, that crucial first step is to get into The Chase. The top drivers have maneuvered themselves into solid positions, and it’s safe to say that we’ll see the 14, 48, 24, and 2 cars ready to rumble for the title. The 11 and the 99 also look to be relatively comfortable. Then it gets interesting. I’m going to throw out the prediction that the 42, 9, and 39 survive. Along with the 16 and the 5.

That leaves us with the battle between the 17 and the 18 cars for that last spot. To me, the 18 car has the ability to challenge for a race win on any given day, and I’m not sure that the 17 car can match that right now. The downside is that the 18 car has also shown the ability to crash and burn and finish last on any given day, but I believe that the 17 car drops out of 12th place and gets replaced by the 18. The 83, 33, and others join the 17 in the void reserved for non-Chasers who don't pack the gear to run for the Sprint cup title.

With my predicted Chasers lined up at the start line, who takes home the big prize? Well, my front runners become the 14 and the 48 followed by the 5 and 18 cars. Beyond that, the 2 car and the 11 car have both looked like they’re peaking at the right time, and a case might also be made for the 42. Those that like darkhorse picks might go with the Blue Deuce just for kicks.

That 14 car has been tough all season, and certainly hasn’t looked like a newly formed team. Which always makes me suspicious that a big fallout is waiting right around the corner (just like the 18 team last season). That's the curse of The Chase.

The 48 team has this whole Chase nonsense all figured out, and certainly they’ve got to be considered the favorite. Look for them to gather win number four fairly soon and have the Nascar world predicting title number four in a row. (yawn).

The 5 team is the sentimental favorite, but can they stop the 48 juggernaut? That would be fun to watch, but might be a long shot.

Then there’s the wildcard 18 car. If Kyle Busch claws his way into the Chase, look out. I’m of the opinion that if he’s alive for the title during those final ten races then he’ll be the car to watch. He’d be my pick to shock everyone and steal the title from the 48 team. Or blow up trying.

Safe bet would be the 48 team, but hell, that ain’t no fun!

p.s. Just to let ya'll know, I done started me a blog here in these parts of the interwebs. Called it "Batteries Included". So come on by and say hi if you get a chance.


  1. Welcome to the family,, I hope its Mark Martin and will be sitting nice at the start of it all, but scary thing is he is not lock in at


  2. Hey BC --
    Ok my friend, third paragraph last line the "42, *8* and 39 survive?? Oh how I wish you were blogging from 2 years ago...LOL

    Ok, besides missing a number in there I gotta say I *LOVE* your darkhorse. I think Kurt could contend. I hope Smoke gets the curse just cuz watching him win so much is making me a bit ill! LOL JJ would be the safe pick but I too would love to see Rowdy shake things up and get what should have been his last year.

    I'll root for Busch brothers 1-2 any bro in any order!

    PS. Will add your blog to the list of our blogs on the side as well as link to mine...

  3. i don't want to seem like I am kissing up to the Blog commander, but I would love to see a Busch 1-2. I prefer 18-2 but would take either way. The Shrub has grown on me, and even though being an 18 fan can be aggravating at times. It never has a dull moment. As a blue duece fan from way back, I have finally accepted Kurt in this car. With Kristen introducing to the guys on the team via blogs, you can't help but root for them.

    Go Busch Bros!! with a side of anybody but HMS (and yes that includes the 14 and 39)

  4. F2~ I would definitely be onboard for Mark Martin finally getting that elusive title. I think the fact that the 5 team have to keep fighting just to get into the Chase will be good for them.

    kv~ Doh! Yep that would be Kasey Kahne in the 9 not the 8. (He's 8th in points so that might've been the cause of my number trouble). Nothing against JJ and Knaus, but it's time to crown a new champ. Kurt in the 2 car should be there all the way to the end.

    stork~ I've become a fan of the 29 team, so this year has basically been the nightmare. RCR will be lucky to even get one car in the Chase! If I had to pick a favorite that I'll be rooting for it'll be Kyle Busch in the 18. After last year's disaster it would be perfect to see him charge to the title this season.