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Nascar at Lowe’s Speedway in Charlotte, NC proved once again that it ain’t over ’til it’s over. Jeff Burton came away with the victory and Kasey Kane finished a relatively close second. This was a race that went right down to the wire and was decided once again by strategy in the pits and the way the C.O.T. responds to clean air with the harder tires that need more downforce. It was a really good race and there weren’t any real controversial situations to contend with.
My last Friday, before-the-race pick for the win, Jeff Gordon, made a good showing even after bouncing off of the wall a couple of times near the beginning of the race and getting a lap down. It looked like he may pull off the win with about a hundred or so miles left to go. He finished eighth, (not a bad finish considering how hard he hit the wall the second time and for all of the problems that put him through.)
The top four “race for the chase” standings were slightly shaken up again for the second week in a row. Carl Edwards had some mysterious ignition problems along with just some bad luck. He dropped back in points for “The Chase” for the second week, but this time hurt his chances a bit more. He now sits in fourth place with five races to go. Now, I’m not sayin’ he’s out of it but he can’t afford any more bad finishes.
Kasey Kane improved his position by moving to only 86 points behind David Ragan for that coveted thirteenth place in the standings for those that missed “the chase”. (It still strikes me as funny that we talk abut the race for thirteenth place. Its amazing the value a “little” extra money can put on finishing so far out of first place.)
It was good to see Jeff Burton win but I can’t say it was totally unexpected. In fact, I did mention him in the ones I thought would be contenders for the checkered flag, I just didn’t pick him to win. (Oh well, I guess that means I finished thirteenth this week.)
Now, it’s “Just A Fans’ View” opinion time. There are a lot things I like about the C.O.T but there is one thing that really disappoints me. When it comes to the 1-1/2 mile tracks in particular, I’ve noticed that once a car gets out in front in the clean air that car seems to be able to pull away from the pack. I haven’t gone back and checked this next point out totally yet, but it also seems that the best finishes with the C.O.T. are ones that have had a caution near the end of the race. I think that is unfortunate, but, don’t get me wrong, I like the C.O.T. and I do remember the days when the race winners sometimes finished many laps ahead of the competitors behind them. What we have now is much better especially when the person we want to win is running out front.
Well, that’s the way I see it for now. Next is Martinsville … that should prove to be interesting. Tune in Friday for the next edition of “Just A Fan’s View” …
See ya next time…