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Who’s Hot / Who’s Not

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not In Sprint Cup : Pre-Chase Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not In Sprint Cup : Pre-Chase Edition

After seven months, 26 races, and a rollercoaster of ups and downs, the 2008 Chase for the Championship field is now set. This year’s twelve participants will go at it in the fifth edition of NASCAR’s new format, battling through a ten-week playoff push that will culminate with a 400-mile shootout at Homestead in November. On that fateful Sunday, the sport will reach a new milestone, awarding the 60th championship trophy in the history of what’s now known as NASCAR’s Sprint Cup division. As we’ve seen in the past, it can sometimes be difficult to sort out playoff contenders from the pretenders. But on paper, who’s entering this year’s Chase with an edge over the competition? Read on to find out Who’s Hot and Who’s Not heading into the final ten-race stretch... Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Pepsi 500 Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Pepsi 500 Edition

One race is all that remains between now and this year's much anticipated Chase. While half of the Top 12 head to Richmond with a win-or-lose mentality after locking in their place in the Chase, a number of teams must run smart and post a solid finish to simply make the playoffs. Clint Bowyer holds a 17 point lead over David Ragan for the final Chase spot and both are on this week's WARM list meaning something has to give this weekend. With his win Sunday night, Jimmie Johnson proved he belongs in the same breath as Carl Edwards and Kyle Busch as championship contenders, but if you want a sleeper for the title, look no further than another driver from Johnson's home state of California. To find out who, check out this week's edition of Who's Hot / Who's Not in Sprint Cup. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: 3M Performance 400 Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: 3M Performance 400 Edition

With the Chase fast approaching, the number of races left for contenders to reel in points leader Kyle Busch are quickly coming and going. Busch's 80 bonus points -- as of now -- guarantees the No. 18 team the number one spot once the Chase begins. However, Carl Edwards narrowed that deficit to 40 with his win this weekend at Michigan -- although he'll need to watch his back. As many as five other drivers can tie Carl for the number two seed with three races remaining. There's also been no better time to drive a Blue Oval in the Cup Series this year. Edwards is just one of the five Roush Fenway drivers who make either the *HOT* or *WARM* lists this week, and *Travis Kvapil*, *David Gilliland,* and even the *Wood Brothers* have been impressive during at least one of the last two races. But while the Ford camp has found the magic touch, other teams and manufacturers are struggling with just three weeks to go until the playoffs. To see who could really go for a win -- and who's left to challenge Busch and Edwards for the title -- check out this week's edition of Who's Hot / Who's Not in Sprint Cup. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Pennsylvania 500 Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Pennsylvania 500 Edition

After a bout with Mother Nature forced a bizarre finish at Pocono -- the second straight week of strange results for NASCAR -- there was plenty of heating up and cooling off throughout the sport's top levels. So, without further ado let's get right to the list of Who's Hot and Who's Not with just five races left to go in the regular season: *HOT* *Jimmie Johnson:* The hottest driver in the series right now, Johnson joins Edwards as Busch’s toughest competition when the Chase begins. Three consecutive Top 3s, two consecutive poles, and a win last week has Johnson fourth in points. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Allstate 400 Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Allstate 400 Edition

Tire problems provided an interesting twist to this week's Allstate 400 at the Brickyard, allowing a number of teams to utilize pit strategy to capture unexpectedly strong finishes. One of those teams, the No. 84 of A.J. Allmendinger, came home 10th, giving him his first Top 10 and the best two-race stretch of his career. Up front, the suspense was far less dramatic. Jimmie Johnson was the strongest car and took home his second win of the season -- becoming just the second man to win a stock car race at Indy from the pole. But behind the No. 48, who else had good runs? And with Chase bids on the line, who fell victim to tire problems out of their control? Check out this week's edition of Who's Hot / Who's Not in Sprint Cup to find out how things are shaping up with just six races left until the playoffs. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Pre-Brickyard 400 Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Pre-Brickyard 400 Edition

As teams approach one of the most prestigious races in the Sprint Cup Series and fans and drivers are refreshed following a rare off weekend, it's a perfect opportunity to recognize some of the streakiest drivers heading into this year's Brickyard 400. Of course, one man has been in a league of his own all season - but another driver has surprised in mirroring Kyle Busch's points total over the past nine races. Who is that famous wheelman giving Busch a run for his money? And who's season is suddenly running on life support after a strong early start? See who are some of the worst drivers in the series as of late, and who has an opportunity to kiss the bricks on Sunday by checking out this week's edition of Who's Hot / Who's Not in Sprint Cup. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Save Mart 350K Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Save Mart 350K Edition

The Sprint Cup Series' first trip to a road course this season was supposed to provide drivers who typically don't run near the front the opportunity to make a statement. But while drivers like Marcos Ambrose and Ron Fellows appeared to have cars capable of Top 10 finishes, it was the usual frontrunners near the top of the leaderboard by the time the day was over -- including race winner Kyle Busch. Busch got back on track this weekend after two poor finishes, but who else stayed "HOT" this week? And what teams near the bottom of the Top 35 appeared to have a shot this weekend at a road course, but still struggled? Check out this week's edition of Who's Hot / Who's Not in Sprint Cup to find out. *HOT* *Kyle Busch:* Why there was talk about Lil’ Busch struggling on the Cup side, I really don’t understand. Busch proved the critics wrong, winning the first road course race of his young career this weekend and extending his points lead to 103 over Jeff Burton. Busch finished 43rd at Pocono and 13th at Michigan this month, but ran up front in both events before crashing out two weeks ago and coming from the back last week. With all of his focus on the Cup effort now -- Busch abandoned plans to run for the Nationwide and Truck Series titles -- it’s scary to think of what the No. 18 is capable of for the rest of the season. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not In Sprint Cup : Pocono 500 Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not In Sprint Cup : Pocono 500 Edition

Pit strategy, pit strategy, and more pit strategy; in what became a 500-mile parade with little passing, Pocono’s race became won or lost by the men behind the wall. For those who made the right calls at the right times, a final restart on lap 181 put them in perfect position to succeed; for others, faulty fuel stops left them agonizing deep in the back of the pack. Through it all, Kasey Kahne stayed above the fray – simply because that No. 9 car was in a league of its own. Building a lead of almost ten seconds over its nearest competitors, the Budweiser Dodge cruised home to victory over Brian Vickers, scoring its second win in the last three races as Kahne solidified his hold on a spot in the Chase. Who else is on track to follow in his footsteps -- and which guys find any chance at the playoffs slipping from their grasp? Read this week’s version of Who’s Hot / Who’s Not to find out. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Best Buy 400 Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Best Buy 400 Edition

The notorious “Monster Mile” jumped out and attacked the competition Sunday when Elliott Sadler came down on the No. 38 of David Gilliland on Lap 18, triggering a massive pileup that ended the days for a number of Chase contenders before they could even get into a rhythm. Aside from Sadler’s blunder, though, it was Kyle Busch who once again stole the headlines by claiming his fourth win of the season. Busch is undoubtedly the hottest driver in the series right now; but how does his start stack up against Jimmie Johnson’s impressive start to 2007? Check out this week’s edition of Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup to find out, as well as which of our Top 12 contenders were able to take the multi-car crash in stride ... or be forced to face the consequences (and the carnage) head on. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Coca-Cola 600 Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: Coca-Cola 600 Edition

In the past, the extra 100 miles that make the Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR’s longest event has proved to add an extra dimension to an already grueling race. This year was no different, as it wasn't how you started but how you finished that made the difference. It seemed that every driver who ran up front ran into problems -- and in the end, Kasey Kahne survived for the victory only after Tony Stewart succumbed to tire problems three laps from the finish. Kahne moves into the Top 12 in points this week with his first win in 52 starts, and appears to be picking up momentum after winning the All-Star race last week. But will his breakthrough win be enough to put him in this week’s “HOT” list? Check out the latest edition of Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in Sprint Cup below to find out. Read More »