Hey folks! Here's my take on the Charlotte weekend! The Trucks were off, so it was a two race weekend. They were night races.
Friday night was the Nationwide race. Brad Keselowski won with 22 laps led, followed by Kyle Busch with 34 laps led, Matt Kenseth with 52 laps led, Ryan Blaney with 14 laps led and Kyle Larson. Rounding out the top-10 were rookie Chris Buescher, Trevor Bayne, rookie Chase Elliott with 66 laps led, Elliott Sadler and Brian Scott. Regan Smith led 9 laps before he finished 11th. Brendan Gaughan led 3 laps and finished 16th. Trevor Bayne was fastest in the 1st Nationwide practice. The names in the top-6 are still the same but there was some moving around. Rookie Chase Elliott leads his teammate Regan Smith still, but Brian Scott's 3rd now, Elliott Sadler's 4th and Ty Dillon's now 5th after his wreck. Trevor Bayne's still 6th by a big cushion over his rookie teammate, Chris Buescher. As long as none of the top-6 miss multiple races, there's still the name lock, which means the names in the top-6 likely won't change. From Chris Buescher down, they're mathematically eliminated from championship. The top-2, Chase Elliot and Regan Smith are the only likely champions. Chase Elliott leads the Rookie of the Year battle. The Nationwide won't race again until next month.
Saturday night was the Cup race. Trevor Bayne, due to no owner points and not being in the top-36 on speed in qualifying, failed to qualify the Cup 6 , which he's scheduled to drive full time next year. He likely wasn't so happy about this. Well, it wasn't that bad a weekend overall for him, especially when we consider how he has MS and that needs to stay at bay for him to race. He was good in the Nationwide, at least. Maybe Talladega, where he's scheduled to race with the Wood Brothers will be better. Kevin Harvick won the race with 162 laps led, followed by Jeff Gordon with 74 laps led, Jamie McMurray with 5 laps led, Joey Logano and Kyle Busch with 41 laps led. Rounding out the top-10 were rookie Kyle Larson with 5 laps led, Ryan Newman with 1 lap led, Carl Edwards with 1 lap led, Denny Hamlin with 22 laps led and Kasey Kahne. Kurt Busch led 2 laps and finished 11th. Rookie Austin Dillon led 6 laps and finished 13th. Rookie Justin Allgaier led 2 laps and finished 15th. Brad Keselowski finished 16th after 8 laps led. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. was 20th after 4 laps led, due to a broken shifter. Rookie Michael Annett led 1 lap and finished 33rd. Next week's the next elimination race in the Chase. Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick are locked into the next round with wins but the other ten drivers, Kyle Busch, Ryan Newman, Carl Edwards, Jeff Gordon, Denny Hamlin, Kasey Kahne, Matt Kenseth, Brad Keselowski and Jimmie Johnson will fight for the remaining six spots, so that means four will be eliminated.
Come back next week for my take on Talladega.