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Who’s Hot / Who’s Not

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in NASCAR: Loudon-Dover Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in NASCAR: Loudon-Dover Edition

For the first time since the August 21st race at Michigan International Speedway, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series finally ran and completed a race on a Sunday afternoon. Between the Saturday night extravaganzas at Bristol and Richmond, plus the rainouts at Atlanta and Chicago, it’s been a long time since the series actually ran a race in its traditional timeslot. The Sunday date was the only return to normalcy, though, as everything else was topsy-turvy. Between Jimmie Johnson’s mediocre performance, Tony Stewart’s back-to-back race wins, and Kurt Busch’s pre-race troubles, even the sometimes slow pace of the Sylvania 300 wasn’t enough to deter race fans. Is this perhaps the most exciting Chase since the format was implemented? Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in NASCAR: Chicago-Loudon Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in NASCAR: Chicago-Loudon Edition

Another point for Mother Nature! Once again, the crabby ol’ witch decided that it’s just not right for NASCAR to be run on Sundays and postponed the race to another Monday morning extravaganza. I must give it to the fans who showed up, though, with 42,000 listed as the official attendance number for the day. In a related story, a record number of people called out of work with the “24-hour flu” on Monday, an epidemic that has scientists baffled. Anyways, back to business. With all three series racing last weekend, one of which was the first race of the Chase for the Sprint Cup, the word “momentum” was thrown around quite a bit. Once again, Hot / Not is here to show you who has it heading into Loudon, and who could use some of their own. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in NASCAR: Richmond-Chicago Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in NASCAR: Richmond-Chicago Edition

Bristol WHO?! Following the race at Richmond, there is a new sheriff in town when it comes to beating and banging on the NASCAR circuit, and in front of a packed house no less. All week long, Richmond was hyped up as the end-of-the-line, exciting, down to the wire, Dale Jr. might be in the Chase extravaganza and for a while I thought it might not live up to expectations. It did. While I had originally predicted that the 12 Chase drivers heading into Richmond would be the same 12 once the checkered flag flew—a prediction that would up being correct in the end—there were a few instances during the race where I held my breath and wondered if there may indeed be a tremendous upset. After all, the competitors who simply had to finish the race were spending extensive time in the pits, while those who had no choice but to win in order to be a contender were running in the top 5. Read More »

Cup Drivers To Watch At Atlanta … And Who’s Hot & Who’s Not In NASCAR, Too

Cup Drivers To Watch At Atlanta … And Who’s Hot & Who’s Not In NASCAR, Too

For some reason, Mother Nature doesn’t seem to be a very big NASCAR fan these days. Whether it was the 2+ hour rain delay at Pocono or the Monday race at Watkins Glen, the weather seems intent on making sure as few fans stick around to see the finish of the race as possible. This time, though, she really has her panties in a wad. Though the Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series races were able to go the full distance, come Sunday the skies opened right around the time the Sprint Cup Series race was supposed to start and carried on just long enough for NASCAR to postpone it … until Tuesday. A forecast which called for a 100% chance of rain from tropical storm Lee was enough to convince NASCAR that putting thousands of fans, officials, drivers, etc. at risk on Monday would not be the right decision. This ended up being the right call as tornadoes, thunderstorms, and rain all pounded the area surrounding the racetrack. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in NASCAR: Bristol-Atlanta Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in NASCAR: Bristol-Atlanta Edition

Who knew a fractured ankle could be such a motivator for Brad Keselowski? I feel like this injury could possibly start a new trend. A horrible, painful trend... With that in mind, I have made the decision that, in an effort to improve my writing, I’m going to jam my foot in the cogs of some heavy machinery and see if I improve at all. Hey, if not, at least I’ll have a good story to tell while I’m talking to my fellow inmates in a straitjacket! But before they drag me off, into the asylum let’s quickly get back to the business at hand. It's time to take a look at a few more drivers who, like Keselowski, are on hot streaks of their own — though with fewer broken bones to go along with them. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in NASCAR: Michigan – Bristol Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not in NASCAR: Michigan – Bristol Edition

It might be a case of the Monday blues talking, but I’m noticing a trend this season. The trend being that road course races are providing the best quality races this season, with a healthy mixture of bumping and banging, rivalries, and storylines all mixed in. It’s a wonder there isn’t a road course in the Chase, let alone a couple more on the Sprint Cup Series schedule. Personally, I used to be a total road course snob but the last couple of seasons have turned me into a believer. Familiarity returned to the Sprint Cup Series with Kyle Busch pulling into Victory Lane, one of the “hot” drivers at this point of the season. What a great time to peak, too, with the Chase starting in just a few short weeks. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Hot In NASCAR: Watkins Glen – Michigan Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Hot In NASCAR: Watkins Glen – Michigan Edition

Tempers flared, rivalries were formed, and rain fell in a continuation of a season filled with drama, tension, and damaged racecars. And that was just the IndyCar race. But this is a NASCAR column, so we’ll discuss what happened in Watkins Glen. Rain, bent sheet metal, rain, short tempers, rain, and, well more rain. And fog. Lots of fog and visibility issues plagued the Cup Series race, which was moved to Monday following a downpour that began during pre-race ceremonies and continued for hours. The Nationwide Series even saw a little bit of a drizzle, but nothing substantial enough to stop the race. However, it was all definitely worth the wait with Marcos Ambrose becoming the fifth different first time Sprint Cup Series winner in 2011, a trend that I hope to see continue. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Not in NASCAR: Pocono-Watkins Glen Edition

Who’s Hot / Not in NASCAR: Pocono-Watkins Glen Edition

It came as a surprise to, well, no one when rain plagued both the Camping World Truck and Sprint Cup Series races over the weekend at Pocono, a track that has about as much luck with weather issues as Jeremy Mayfield has with drug tests. It also came as a surprise to no one that Iowa Speedway once again put on the best show of the weekend, producing a finish that no one saw coming and won’t soon be forgotten. Kudos to Ricky Stenhouse Jr. for growing a backbone and driving with that aggressive fire-in-the-belly attitude we all knew he had in him! Now if only Carl Edwards hadn’t re-signed with Roush Fenway Racing… Hot tempers, cooler temperatures, and tons of bent sheet metal aside, let’s take a look at the drivers with (and without) momentum heading out of Pocono and into the twists and turns that make up Watkins Glen. Read More »

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not In NASCAR: Indianapolis – Pocono Edition

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not In NASCAR: Indianapolis – Pocono Edition

With six races to go until the NASCAR Sprint Chase for the Cup cut-off begins, the major NASCAR touring series all invaded Indianapolis with the big boys at the Brickyard and the Nationwide and Truck Series having their swan song at Lucas Oil Raceway Park. There was plenty of drama (and a couple of upset winners to boot). Now, we’ll see who’s “hot” and who’s “not” following Indy... Read More »

Who’s Hot / Not in NASCAR: Off Week-Indianapolis Edition

Who’s Hot / Not in NASCAR: Off Week-Indianapolis Edition

There is something to be said about a man who refers to his significant other as "my smokin’ hot wife" in a public prayer before thousands of spectators and millions of viewers. After all, doesn’t every woman dream of having a man who adores her enough to refer to her as "smokin’ hot" in front of millions of people, creating a media frenzy where her name will be played over and over, on news and sports broadcasts all over the country? No? Just me? Alrighty then… Read More »