Race Weekend Central

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2009 Autism Speaks 400 at Dover

While Jimmie Johnson was completely dominant at Dover, he wasn’t the only one with a stellar Sunday at the Monster Mile. Our experts actually rewarded a different driver with the top spot this week, keeping the three-time champ from assuming the throne he’ll so desperately seek by Homestead.

At the same time, some people who had less than Heluva! Good weekends saw their fortunes turn South in the rankings – including last week’s trendy pick at Lowe’s before David Reutimann upstaged him just one week ago. Who are the two drivers of which we speak? You’ll have to read on to find out in this week’s version of the Frontstretch Power Rankings.

How the Rankings Are Calculated: Frontstretch does our power rankings somewhat similar to how the Associated Press does them for basketball or football – writers on staff will vote for the top 20 on a 20-19-18-17-16-15… 3-2-1 basis, giving 20 points to their first-place driver, 19 for their second and so on. In the end, Mike Neff calculates the points, adds some funny one-liners and… voila! You have one batch of Power Rankings to serve to our fans.

Rank Driver (First-Place Votes) Votes Last Week
1 Tony Stewart (9) 199 1
Can now retire after accomplishing his longtime goal of winning the FOX Cup.
2 Jimmie Johnson (1) 185 5
Rick Hendrick now considering replacing Chad Knaus after realizing he hasn’t been cheating often enough as of late.
3 Ryan Newman (3) 173 3
Just want him to start a rivalry at this point, so someone else can walk up and say, “Hello… Newman.”
4 Kurt Busch 157 7
Thank goodness Dodge got the new engine in Busch’s car before they were stopped from spending money on NASCAR.
5 Mark Martin 150 6
If Junior can continue to run halfway decent, the old man may be able to sneak quietly into the Chase without losing his crew to the No. 88.
6 Jeff Gordon 136 2
Starting to wonder if his back problems are the result of him having to carry both car and team on his back the last couple of years.
7 Matt Kenseth 135 9
Talk all you want about Carl; Kenseth is still the champ at Roush and his pit crew still gets it done when they have to.
8 Greg Biffle 125 13
Doing his part to prove to teenagers everywhere that braces are not a handicap.
9 Carl Edwards 114 11
We’re tired of the Subway commercial about how the backflip got conjured up. Every commercial of Carl’s revolves around the backflip. Why not do one with Colgate for those mega-chompers instead?
10 Kyle Busch 108 4
His luck is going to have to turn around at some point. Maybe this year, it will happen in the Chase, and we can have a real good guy/bad guy battle with Johnson for the title.
11 David Reutimann 99 10
Well, he sat on the pole and ended up on the lead lap, but the rest of the weekend had Reutimann looking about as strong as he did at Charlotte – and there wasn’t any rain to give him the win this time.
12 Kasey Kahne 86 NR
Had to be nice to have horsepower under the hood for a change. Now, if he could only get those Allstate girls back.
13 Denny Hamlin 68 8
Apparently, Miles prefers UPS.
14 Jeff Burton 59 14
This week, he said that if he knew what was wrong at RCR, they’d have it figured out by now. This is why Jeff is considered The Mayor of NASCAR… because that was the perfect politician answer.
15 Joey Logano 51 NR
Talk all you want about Logano being overmatched in this car – he’s figuring it out more and more every race.
Dropped Out: Juan Pablo Montoya (12), Brian Vickers (15)
Also Receiving Votes: Juan Pablo Montoya (48), Sam Hornish Jr. (39), Clint Bowyer (39), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (29), Brian Vickers (26), Marcos Ambrose (16), Jamie McMurray (12), Reed Sorenson (11), Casey Mears (10), Martin Truex Jr. (8), Robby Gordon (7), Joe Nemechek (5), Tony Raines (3), Scott Riggs (2), Bill Elliott (1)
Who Voted: Thomas Bowles, Ren Jonsin, Mike Neff, Tony Lumbis, Doug Turnbull, Matt Taliaferro, Vito Pugliese, Bryan Davis Keith, Phil Allaway and Kurt Smith


About the author

What is it that Mike Neff doesn’t do? The writer, radio contributor and racetrack announcer coordinates the site’s local short track coverage, hitting up Saturday Night Specials across the country while tracking the sport’s future racing stars. The writer for our signature Cup post-race column, Thinkin’ Out Loud (Mondays) also sits down with Cup crew chiefs to talk shop every Friday with Tech Talk. Mike announces several shows each year for the Good Guys Rod and Custom Association. He also pops up everywhere from PRN Pit Reporters and the Press Box with Alan Smothers to SIRIUS XM Radio. He has announced at tracks all over the Southeast, starting at Millbridge Speedway. He's also announced at East Lincoln Speedway, Concord Speedway, Tri-County Speedway, Caraway Speedway, and Charlotte Motor Speedway.

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