So it comes down to this. The last race of this lengthy NASCAR season. Following 35 points spending races, the last 4 drivers that will race to the championship Sunday happen to be decided.
Since the removal format to pick a winner was introduced two years ago the champion has also won the race. Odds are then the winner of the race Sunday will also wear the Cup crown. Others could triumph, but three of those previous five race winners dating back to Tony Stewart at 2011, also have won the name, so don’t be surprised if the motorist celebrating a race triumph in victory lane Sunday, is also celebrating his championship.
Here’s how it shakes out one of the four finalists for Sunday’s 36th race of this year for your gambling or fantasy racing leagues. Driver Ratings are compiled from 2005-2016 races (23 total) among active drivers at Phoenix. The Driver Rating is a number based on a formula developed by NASCAR which combines”loop info” components such as average running posture, average rate under green, number of workouts, and other stats. There’s a maximum of 150 points that a driver can make for each race. The chances are current as of Wednesday.
1. Carl Edwards (7-1). Edwards has two wins here along with the highest driver rating one of the 4, 109.4. The only driver among the Championship 4 with multiple wins at Homestead, Edwards still has memories of losing the race, and the name, to Tony Stewart in 2011. Section of the Joe Gibbs Racing team, Edwards will be looking for redemption Sunday, and he may just get it.
2. Jimmie Johnson (7-2). Homestead is one of the few tracks in NASCAR that Johnson hasn’t won at. He works well here and has the 2nd greatest driver evaluation of the 4, 96.7. Johnson will be looking to make history Sunday with a seventh title. If he brings his”A” game and may prevent a few of the miscues that the group has endured this season occasionally, Johnson could pull it off.
3. Kyle Busch (5-1). Busch is looking to defend his name, earned with a win at Homestead this past year. He has the third highest driver rating, 95.5. But he hardly made the Championship 4, and has struggled sometimes. However, with one last race and an opportunity to bring another name, and Joe Gibbs Racing behind himBusch could be in position to add another win, and yet another name.
4. Joey Logano (7-1). Logano is perhaps the underdog among the Championship 4. He has never won at Homestead, has the lowest driver evaluation among the area, 83.5. However, Logano finished fourth last year and headed the 2nd most laps in the race,” 72. Logano was surprising at times this year and he could certainly be a surprise Sunday by winning his first Cup title.
OTHERS: There will be a total of 36 other motorists seeking to win Sunday. Chief among them, Matt Kenseth (12-1). Kenseth has the second greatest driver rating one of the area, 108.4, and acquired here in 2007. Coming off a disappointing finish at Phoenix a week, Kenseth will be seeking to make a powerful statement. Kevin Harvick (6-1) was also disappointed last week since he failed to make the cut for the first time since the elimination format started. He won the race, and the name in 2014, has the fifth greatest driver evaluation, 104.3, and could add another win for his Homestead resume Sunday.
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway will be run on Sunday, November 20. Live coverage is going to be on NBC starting at 2:00 p.m. ET using all the green flag coming only after 2:30 p.m. ET.
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