The 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup is moving from the Desert Southwest to South Florida for Ford Championship Weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The season’s final race is here – Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 – with defending series champion Kyle Busch, Carl Edwards, Jimmie Johnson and Joey Logano still in the hunt for the title. Busch entered this year’s post-season as the Number-1 seed and is bidding to become the first driver with back-to-back Cup Series championships since Johnson put five in a row together from 2006 through 2010. Busch is the only one of the four top seeds still in title contention. Brad Keselowski, Denny Hamlin and 2014 champion Kevin Harvick have all been eliminated … Chase participants have won the season finale in Miami in nine of the twelve years it’s been run as part of NASCAR’s “post-season” format. The non-title contenders to win the Homestead finale during that stretch are Greg Biffle in 2004 and 2006, and Hamlin in 2013.
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The 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup moves from Texas to Arizona, with the final race in the Round of Eight coming up Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway. The eight-driver field will be trimmed to four following the Can-Am 500. Chase participants have won this race in ten of the twelve years it’s been run as part of NASCAR’s “post-season” format. The only non-Chase competitors to win the fall race at P-I-R during that stretch are Kyle Busch in 2005 and Kasey Kahne in 2011.
► Seven of the eight drivers remaining in the semifinal round of the Chase have won a Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway: Kurt and Kyle Busch, Carl Edwards, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson and Matt Kenseth. Joey Logano’s best finish there is third on two occasions, most recently in this race last year … Dating back to November 2012, Harvick has won six of the last eight races contested at P-I-R – including this year’s first stop on March 13th … So far this fall, all eight post-season races have been won by drivers on the original Chase Grid. The best finish by a non-Chase competitor is Brian Scott’s runner-up effort at Talladega Superspeedway sixteen days ago, when he finished second to Logano.
The 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup has rolled out of Martinsville, Va., for the twelve hundred-mile trek to Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth – site of Sunday’s Triple-A Texas 500. It’s the second race of the three-week Round of Eight, during which the field of eight remaining title contenders will be trimmed to four. Chase participants have won this race in ten of the eleven years it’s been run as part of NASCAR’s “post-season” format. Tony Stewart, in 2006, is the only non-Chase competitor to claim victory in the fall race at T-M-S.
Next stop Martinsville Speedway for Sunday’s Goody’s Fast Relief 500 as the semifinal round of the post-season Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup begins. The eight remaining title contenders are traveling along a path that will ultimately lead to a championship for one with 1,076 “Miles-2-Miami” left before Ford Championship Weekend in November. This will be the sixth and final short-track race of the year and the only Chase race to be run on an oval less than one mile in length. Joe Gibbs Racing has dominated the 2016 short-track schedule with wins in four of the five races run thus far. Carl Edwards has victories at Richmond International Raceway and Bristol. Denny Hamlin won last month in Richmond and Kyle Busch was victorious in this year’s first visit to Martinsville on April 3rd. All four of J-G-R’s Cup Series competitors, including Matt Kenseth, have advanced to the Chase’s Round of Eight … Busch is bidding to become the first driver to sweep both Martinsville races in a single season since Hamlin doubled up in 2010.
On the track, it’s on to Talladega Superspeedway, as the second half of the post-season Chase kicks off with Sunday’s Hellmann’s 400. The twelve remaining title contenders are traveling along a path that will ultimately lead to a championship for one with 1,576.08 “Miles-2-Miami” left before Ford Championship Weekend in November … and elimination for four others after Sunday’s race. Recent wins by Chevrolet drivers Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick have moved them into the next round. Joey Logano and Austin Dillon are presently tied for the final transfer spot into the Round of Eight that opens October 30th at Martinsville Speedway.
Talladega Superspeedway announced Tuesday that Hellmann’s mayonnaise has been named title sponsor of Sunday’s Sprint Cup Series race. The Hellman’s 500 will kick off the second half of the 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Hellmann’s is a brand of New Jersey-based Unilever – one of the world’s leading suppliers of food, home- and personal-care products, and refreshments. Hellman’s has been involved in a variety of NASCAR sponsorships since 2004 … This coming weekend will see a pair of elimination races at Talladega as the post-season rolls on. In the Sprint Cup Series, four drivers will be trimmed from title contention after Sunday’s race … The inaugural Truck Series Chase will see its first cuts of the post-season as two drivers will be dropped from title contention after Saturday’s fred’s 250 Powered by Coca-Cola.
The 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup rolls on from North Carolina to the Midwest for Sunday afternoon’s Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway. It’s the second race in the Round of Twelve, which opened this past weekend with Jimmie Johnson’s victory at Charlotte Motor Speedway that guaranteed the Hendrick Motorsports driver a spot in the eight-man semifinal round that opens October 30th at Martinsville Speedway … Chase drivers have won the fall race at Kansas Speedway eight straight years and nine of the twelve years the post-season format has been in place. The three non-title contenders who have won there are Joe Nemechek in 2004, Tony Stewart in 2006 and Greg Biffle in 2007 … Among full-time Sprint Cup Series drivers, Johnson – the Number-8 seed – tops Kansas Speedway’s win list with three victories, most recently in May 2015 … Three different manufacturers have won the last three Cup Series races at Kansas: Toyota (Kyle Busch), Ford (Joey Logano) and Chevrolet (Johnson).
The 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup rolls on from Delaware to North Carolina for Saturday night’s Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. It’s the opening race in the Round of Twelve, with the remaining drivers on The Chase Grid hoping to avoid elimination when the field is further reduced to eight in three weeks. All twelve drivers have had their championship points reset to three thousand, and any one of the twelve that wins a race in the next three weeks will automatically advance to the Round of Eight that opens October 30th at Martinsville Speedway … Chase drivers have won the fall race at Charlotte in ten of the twelve years the post-season title format has been in place. The only two non-chase drivers to win during that stretch are Jamie McMurray in 2010 and Brad Keselowski in 2013 … Kyle Busch, the top seed in this year’s Chase, has never won a points-paying Cup Series race in Charlotte. He’s been to Victory Lane there a combined fourteen times in the X-FINITY and Camping World Truck Series … Of the drivers still in contention for the 2016 Sprint Cup championship, Jimmie Johnson has the most wins at C-M-S: seven … Martin Truex Junior will roll into Charlotte with a full head of steam, having won two of the three post-season races so far. And, oh by the way … earlier this season, he won the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway after leading all but eight of the four hundred laps run … Truex entered this year’s Chase as the Number-6 seed but ended the first round Number-1.
There’ll be high drama in this weekend’s Sprint Cup/X-FINITY Series doubleheader at Dover International Speedway with four Cup Series drivers facing elimination in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. With wins at Chicagoland Speedway and New Hampshire, respectively, Martin Truex Junior and Kevin Harvick are moving on. But at the bottom of the post-season standings, four drivers are looking to get their title hopes back on track in Delaware’s capital city: Jamie McMurray, Austin Dillon, Tony Stewart and Chris Buescher. None of those four have cracked the top ten in either of the first two post-season races … In the X-FINITY Series, Elliott Sadler’s victory at Kentucky Speedway moved him into the next round. But after finishing only twenty-eighth in the opening race of the inaugural Chase, top-seeded Erik Jones finds himself ninth in the twelve-man title field with just two weeks left before four drivers are eliminated from championship contention.
The 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup rolls on from New England to the Mid-Atlantic region for Sunday’s Citizen Soldier 400 at Dover International Speedway. It’s the final race in the opening round. Four of the sixteen competitors on The Chase Grid will be dropped from title contention before the series heads to Charlotte for the October 8th Bank of America 500. Drivers currently occupying positions thirteen through sixteen are Jamie McMurray, Austin Dillon, three-time champion Tony Stewart and rookie Chris Buescher. Kyle Larson holds the final provisional spot to transfer into the Round of Twelve, five points clear of the cutoff … Stewart is the only one of those five drivers with a win on “The Monster Mile.” In fact, he has three victories there, winning in 2013 and sweeping both races in 2000. Larson finished second (to Matt Kenseth) in this year’s first stop at Dover back on May 15th. Buescher was eighteenth, McMurray twenty-first and Dillon placed thirty-third … Martin Truex Junior of Furniture Row Racing and Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick have locked themselves into the twelve-man field for the next round with victories in the two opening races of this year’s post-season Chase.
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