You have to hand it to Kyle Busch. The man can flat wheel a car. His victory at Watkins Glen gives him three career NASCAR Sprint Cup victories on road courses. You know, it wouldn’t surprise me if someday he doesn’t surpass Jeff Gordon for all-time victories on the tracks of right and left turns. He’s just that good. He had a small army of challengers on his back, and he held him all off.
Kudos to Brad Keselowski for repressing the temptation to turn Busch. When Keselowski said he didn’t need any more drama, did anyone find Martin Truex’s reaction a bit interesting? I did. You get the feeling there’s still a few drivers who haven’t forgotten some of “Bad” Brad’s habits. If nothing else, it’s like the old days of Earnhardt chasing you down. It wasn’t that this kind of driver would always punt you to get ahead, it was the idea you knew he would do if the spirit moved him. That alone is enough to get some drivers off kilter.
So Austin Dillon get to pilot the ’14′ car this Sunday. Judging from the reactions around the World Wide Web, I had no idea Regan Smith had so many fans! I bet he didn’t either. Per my last post, Dillon wouldn’t have been my choice, but it’s a choice that’s not hard to understand. There’s the tie in with Bass Pro Shops from a sponsorship point of view, let’s face it, Dillon has demonstrated some promise in his limited NASCAR career. Let’s be honest, a lot of this resentment comes from Dillon being the grandson of Richard Childress. A lot of fans would rather see an underdog succeed than royalty. Convincing folks he’s advanced on his own merit will be one of Dillon’s chief challenges. Here’s one thing for sure: he’ll get his chance, and if he isn’t up to it, he won’t last long.
Word has it Michael Waltrip Racing is ready to announce that Brian Vickers will get a full time Cup ride come 2014. He’s earned it. Vickers has made the most of his limited chances, and it’s time for the “driver by committee” approach to cease in the ’55′ car. Is anybody else wondering if this really is the end for Mark Martin? Heck, he could enter his own ride now if he wants to keep going on a limited schedule. It’s not hard to imagine Michael Waltrip will still field his own entry for the restrictor plate tracks.
Back to Watkins Glen- others may still agree, but it’s time to at least put one more date for a road course on the schedule. It doesn’t matter whether or not they add a track like Road America, or maybe even add a second date for Watkins Glen, these days, some of the best racing is happening on road courses.
I can understand Kasey Kahne’s anger at the Glen, but still I have to admit that if I’m Matt Kenseth, I’m not exactly quaking with fear…the race for the Chase plot thickens. I stand by my prediction that Brad Keselowski makes the Chase. I also wouldn’t be shocked if Jeff Gordon doesn’t. A wild card with four wins? That may just be the case for Kenseth as a scuffles a bit. You can’t count out Kurt Busch or Ryan Newman either….good to hear Smoke is home. Racing is not the same without Tony Stewart’s colorful presence. The whispers seem to be getting louder than Stewart may sit out the rest of the year. It’s hard to imagine.