When you think of wild card tracks in the Chase, Talladega and Martinsville come to mind. Over the last year, a new track has proven it belongs on that list and that is Kansas Speedway. A reconfiguring has turned this once flat track into a high banked thriller. The corners are trickier, the straightaways are faster, and the victory is that much harder to get. Kansas has turned itself into one of the most unpredictable races in the Chase. A survival game will be played on Sunday to see who can survive and advance in the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
The Hollywood Casino 400 will go green on Sunday, October 6, 2013 at 2:16 PM ET. 267 laps and 400.5 miles make up the distance in which Chasers will have to run in order to keep their championship hopes alive. Sunday afternoon’s weather looks great with mostly sunny skies and a high temperature of 60 F. You can catch the race on ESPN or MRN.
Last October it was Matt Kenseth taking home the trophy in the first race on the new Kansas surface. Kenseth avoided being torn up all day to make history. Since then, Kenseth won the second race on the surface back in April when he held off a hard charge from Kasey Kahne. Could Kenseth go three for three on Sunday? It as a very viable possibility that would only enhance his championship case.
Despite the ‘Monster Mile’ making an appearance in the Chase last weekend, the standings held together pretty well. A top 10 day for Kenseth kept him his points lead while a commanding victory by Jimmie Johnson inched him closer to the top spot. Johnson jumped over Kyle Busch and he will look to do the same to Kenseth this weekend. Kevin Harvick and Jeff Gordon still loom behind the runaway trio, but a good performance on Sunday will be vital for their championship run.
With the top three in the standings being so close, a wild Kansas race could blow the Chase wide open. Taking a peek at the track of history of the top two in points may not make that a plausible prediction. Getting through this weekend will be crucial for any Chaser, and especially for the top three who can’t afford to fall behind. Storylines galore will be out on Sunday so a quiet race in our nation’s heartland is unlikely to occur.
Next Race: Bank of America 500 at the Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina