Chase Bubble Watch: Playoff picture analysis ahead of Phoenix – Nascar
There’s one to go for the Round of 8 in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, and it’s desperation time for a few drivers after Sunday’s rain-shortened AAA Texas 500 from Texas Motor Speedway. Sixteen drivers came into this year’s Chase with high hopes for a championship, but we’re one week away from cutting the field to the Championship 4 at Phoenix International Raceway.
One driver who won’t have to worry about his place in the Championship 4 is Carl Edwards, who came on strong late and won for the fourth time at Texas. Edwards bounced back from last week’s 36th-place finish at Martinsville Speedway and joins Jimmie Johnson to occupy two of the four spots for the finale in two weeks at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Who’s hot: Joey Logano dominated the first half of the race at Texas en route to leading 178 laps and finishing second. Logano, who won at Talladega, has four straight top-10 finishes in the Chase and is narrowly above the cutline heading to Phoenix. The bad news is Logano’s history at Phoenix isn’t as strong as other Chase contenders.
Who’s not: Kurt Busch heads to Phoenix in last place among the Round of 8 drivers after a 20th-place finish at Texas where he was one lap down. While Busch has enjoyed four straight top-10 finishes at Phoenix, he hasn’t won there since 2005. He’ll probably need to win there this time in order to advance to the Championship 4.
Four in, four out: Here’s a look at the Chase bubble, with four drivers being eliminated after the penultimate race of the season, Nov. 13 at Phoenix International Raceway (2:30 p.m. ET, NBC, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).