From a NASCAR Fan’s View
Well, it’s time for the Cup Teams to hit the Nashville SuperSpeedway again and there are a lot of things about the race this weekend that should make it interesting. But there are also l a few things that are unknown as they enter into the race in the evening and transition into the night.
From this fan’s view, one of the big questions on my mind is, what happened to the Hendrick teams. It seems they have sort of lost their edge but, maybe it only seems that way. If my memory serves me, it seems they went through the same thing last season. They started off relatively strong and then faded for a while and then kinda coasted back into contention but never as strong as they were in the early part of the season. That’s not to say they were running last at all. It just seemed they lost whatever edge they had about the same time last season.
Of course, there have been what many would call, “challenges,” this season. I’m not so sure I’m one of those that would call them “challenges” at all. It all started when Chase Elliott broke his leg in a snowboarding accident. He was out for eight weeks. Then there were the penalties for altered parts and even those didn’t change the results much at all for them. They were still showing up pretty much as the ones to beat every weekend, particularly with William Byron leading the way. Well… that is until a few weeks ago when the Toyotas began to show a lot more strength from most of the Toyota Teams.
Now, before I talk about the Toyotas, I still have much to say about the Chevys and, in particular, the Hendrick Chevys.
There’s been a lot of talk about Kyle Larson and his up and down part of the season. I admit, it has been a bit of roller coaster ride for him and his team in recent weeks. I mean, he has had his problems but he has shown up almost every weekend with a strong car. Sometimes even with a car not so great and then a winner by the end of the race.
Although I’m sure I don’t need to remind you, he very well could have had more than two wins – not counting the dominating performance in the All Star race – and he was running up front when he was involved in several accidents that put him finishing much further back in the field in those races. Some of those had to do with things caused by Ross Chastain, today’s pole sitter. Honestly, from my view, Kyle could have had several more wins and possibly been leading in the points right now. Then there was Alex Bowman and his injured back, William Byron and his points loss and other minor things that have added up to where they all stand now.
Ross Chastain won the pole for this race and it is possible he has set the stage for his first win this season. TrackHouse has proved to be another of the stronger Chevy team organizations and it is possible they could finish at or near the front at Nashville SuperSpeedway. Both Chastain and Suarez had strong runs in the qualifying until Suarez lost control and backed into the wall and has to move to a backup car. That may not be a bad thing for him and the results won’t be known until after the race.
From this fan’s view, it is very possible this could be another Toyota night. Martin Truex Jr. seems to be showing the most strength of the JGR Toyotas lately but Bubba Wallace is right there with him. With there being the transition from early evening to nighttime, it is hard to say what the outcome will be at the end when the final checkered flag falls.
That just leaves a little time to mention the Fords. Of the Fords there are two that stand out in my mind for tonight. Those two would be Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick. I guess I should include Ryan Blaney in with them but I’m just not sure where he is in the hunt. So far, the Fords have been struggling but they have been gaining ground in recent weeks. Of these three, and I’m not saying there are no other Fords that could win tonight, I think if a Ford does win it could be Kevin Harvick. He has been showing the most consistent improvement over the season so far. I know he may not win and I know a Ford may not lead the way at the end but, I think this might be his night. Well… that is unless one of those Chevys or Toyotas dominates the night…
Hey, this is Russ and that’s my view… See ya next time…
All views expressed are strictly the opinion of the writer
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Rusty Norman, Nascarfansview.com and Justafansview.com
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