Nascar Racing

Cup Teams Take On Kansas Speedway   

From a NASCAR Fan’s View

There are questions on many people’s minds for the race at Kansas speedway today. Some of them have to do with how the racing in this 2024 NASCAR Cup season has been going and some of them have to do with last year’s Spring race. The question is, will this be another battle to the very end between Kyle Larson and Denny Hamlin and will the result be the same as last weekend at Dover and similar to last Spring at Kansas?

There are differences this weekend. For one, Christopher Bell is starting on the pole and Ross Chastain starts on the front row with him. Both were very fast in qualifying and both are hungry to win. Bell is looking to turn several bad weekends around and hopefully with a win and Chastain is looking for his first win in this 2024 Cup season.

Add to that the way Noah Gragson has been running this season and him starting third next to Kyle Larson on the second row could lead to his first win running for Stweart Haas Racing and things already get more interesting.

Another noticeable difference is the speed the Toyotas have shown with their new body style this season and how strong they have been almost every weekend when it comes down to the final laps. Truth be told, when it comes to finishes this season, much of it has been between the Hendrick Chevys and the Joe Gibbs Toyotas. Yeah, Hendrick teams have had the advantage but the JGR teams have been right there pressing them for the wins.

Sure, I know Daniel Suarez took a win earlier this season and that William Byron and Denny Hamlin have three wins each. Even though Kyle Larson is the points leader, has six stage wins and a lot of laps led, he only has one win with all the positive statistics he has accumulated so far.

Pole winner, Christopher Bell also has one win even though his statistics don’t quite measure up to Larson’s for the season, at least not yet. In the points standings, he sits in seventeenth. Most of that can be because he has had a rough several weeks as far as finishes go. That probably would be, in this fan’s opinion, the biggest reason he would like to take advantage of his pole position start with a win. (And we all know for the most part, qualifying has very little to do with how the race might go.

Noah Gragson has had an interesting and surprising start to his SHR #10 team. Although this is his first year in the #10 car, he and his crew chief, Drew Blickensderfer, appear to have hit the ground running. No, he hasn’t had a win yet this year but many believe one may be in the not-so-distant future. He has been consistently showing up with a fast race car whether or not he has good finishes. This fan thinks a win at Kansas Speedway today is a possibility although I don’t want to make a definite commitment to that at the moment.

Although I could, I don’t want to make a long list of drivers that could win today at Kansas Speedway. If I did, the list would probably take up about two thirds of the cars running today. I will mention a few obvious choices though. Chase Elliott, Tyler Reddick, Bubba Wallace, Kyle Bush and Ty Gibbs. All of these drivers have shown up with speed whether or not they qualified well because some did and some didn’t. There are several others that could make this list but I just don’t want to go there.

As far as this race being similar or a repeat of last Spring at Kansas or even last weekend at Dover, I guess it is a very real possibility. This season, Larson and Hamlin have led very close to the same number of laps. Hamlin has won more races and Larson has more stage points and leads in the points so far. There are other factors to consider when it comes down to the actual race and its possibilities for these two but, when it comes down to the final laps a lot may depend on where they are and which of them might be leading.

One thing to consider though, and I admit it may have nothing to do with anything. I practice, Kyle Larson was the fastest in single lap, ten lap and fifteen lap times. Whether or not it will make any difference on the last lap I can’t say. What I will say is if he is leading when it comes down to the last few laps, well… you know what that could mean.

Hey, this is Russ and that’s my view… See ya next time…
All views expressed are strictly the opinion of the writer
© May 5, 2024 – all rights reserved
Rusty Norman, and
All audio productions by and Pod Cast Norm Productions
All music TwoBuckThemes from Mike Stewart unless otherwise stated

By Rusty Norman

Amateur writer, NASCAR Fan, musician and former local Stock Car racer.

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