Driver Stocks: Championship Contenders after Talladega

Photo- Getty Images

The wild card race of the Chase is over, now we go back to a few mile and a half tracks including Charlotte and Kansas. Let’s take a quick look at the drivers who look to have the upper hand this weekend at Charlotte.

1) Jimmie Johnson- Charlotte is an up and down track for Johnson, but if anyone can get to victory lane, it would be him. My feeling on Johnson’s Chase is even if he can’t come out of this next race showing he can win, he is close to done. Before you freak, I’m not saying count Johnson out. I’m just saying, in order to win this championship, you are going to have to win. The No.48 team has been lacking in wins for the last half of the season, and it could come back to bite them. Johnson has done great in the Chase, but I believe that winners will be the one sitting at the banquet table in Las Vegas.

2) Brad Keselowski- Lacking some consistency, Keselowski is making up for it all with wins. In the Chase, he is currently two for four. Those are pretty good odds. Will he be able to pull off the same thing Tony Stewart did last year? Well, that’s doubtful because that would be hard to do again. But hey, who loves proving people wrong more than Brad Keselowski. With just a little more consistency, wins, and no mistakes Keselowski could pull away from Johnson.

3) Matt Kenseth- Roller coasters and the Chase for Kenseth go together right now. The Ford’s have all been lacking for the last several weeks. One of those drivers has found a spark and its starting to prove you shouldn’t count him yet. Kenseth won the last race and didn’t just show up and win Talladega; he led a good part of the race and beat lady luck three times. He has a lot of work to do to climb to the top of the standings, but dominating the rest of the season will get it done.

So who exactly is out of the championship? In my honest opinion, I don’t want to count anybody out. Even though Talladega has past, it only takes one or two races for the points to be majorly affected. This could bring many of the Chase drivers who are around the middle of the standings up. It has also been noted that any of the twelve drivers can win this, and this is said because these drivers at any time could go on a winning streak. Take a look at where I think the drivers stand.

Still in it to win It- A four horse race and it is anybodies game is someone else slips up

Brad Keselowski

Jimmie Johnson

Denny Hamlin

Kasey Kahne

Drivers who need to win it to stay in it- These drivers need to pull something out of the car to beat the top tier drivers.

Clint Bowyer

Jeff Gordon

Martin Truex Jr.

Tony Stewart

Pray for another Talladega Crash- One driver needs to put some wins together, and a slight miracle to continue on.

Greg Biffle

Take it to the garage- These driver’s have almost no chance (or none in Dale Earnhardt Jr’s case) left

Kevin Harvick

Matt Kenseth

Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Please note: This is not the current Cup standings; this is the order in which I believe this drivers have left of a chance at the championship.

By Caleb Slouha

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