Look, we're all wrong sometimes. In my case, "sometimes" actually means "a lot."
Just a few weeks ago, prior to the Daytona 500, all of us had at least a few misconceptions about the 2011 NASCAR season. Some of us were more wrong than others.
Below is a list of incorrect statements. Count up how many of these you said – or thought – before the season started, and see how you stack up using the key below:
• "Trevor Bayne? Nice kid, but he has no shot to win a Sprint Cup race this year."
• "Kyle Busch will always come across as a jerk during his interviews."
• "Just because Carl Edwards finished last season with two straight wins doesn't mean he'll have a fast start this year."
• "It doesn't matter what crew chief you stick with Dale Earnhardt Jr., it's not going to help anything."
• "Jeff Gordon just doesn't know how to win races anymore. He's washed up."
• "Richard Childress only signed Paul Menard for the sponsorship money. Menard won't do anything at RCR!"
• "Boy, that new 'Pick a series' points system is really going to put the spotlight on the Nationwide-only drivers."
• "Denny Hamlin is going to pick up right where he left off in the Chase."
• "There's no way ESPN will re-sign Rusty Wallace."
• "It's cool that Brad Keselowski is on Twitter, but he probably won't share his opinion very much since all the drivers are scared of getting fined."
• "The re-designed nose on the front of the Cup cars is going to have a HUGE impact on the racing."
• "Joey Logano is going to make the Chase."
• "Having only one race at Fontana won't do anything to help attendance there."
• "Sure, there wasn't much controversy at Daytona, Phoenix and Las Vegas – but I'll bet you 'Have at it, boys' is going to show itself at Bristol!"
• "Man, those Gibbs motors look STRONG this season!"
• "The two-car hookups at Daytona are going to make for a terrible race."
• "I highly doubt Jimmie Johnson will ever start tweeting."
• "I highly doubt Jeff Gordon will ever start tweeting."
• "What!? Brad Keselowski has a brother who races??"
• "Write this down: Kevin Harvick will go winless this year."
You made 1-5 of the above statements: You are the NASCAR Nostradamus. Quit your job immediately and move to Las Vegas.
You made 6-10 of the above statements: Nobody's perfect, but it's clear you follow the Sprint Cup Series closely, and your knowledge has paid off. (Psst...can you help me with my fantasy picks?)
You made 11-15 of the above statements: Uh, have you been hanging out with Charlie Sheen recently?
You made 16-20 of the above statements: Congratulations! You are now officially qualified to be a NASCAR "expert." See you at the track!