Matt Kenseth and Kyle Busch hold the top two positions in the Sprint Cup Series standings, the same spots they finished in NASCAR's first Chase for the Sprint Cup race. Following his sixth victory of the year, Kenseth has an eight-point edge over his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate.
Busch is just three points ahead of third-place Jimmie Johnson, who finished fifth in the rain-delayed Geico 400. A third-place run by Kevin Harvick moved him to fourth overall, while Carl Edwards, the regular season points leader, rounds out the top five after his up-and-down night earned an 11th-place finish.
Positions six through 10 are occupied by Kurt Busch (finished fourth), Jeff Gordon (sixth), Ryan Newman (10th), Clint Bowyer (ninth) and Kasey Kahne (12th).
The championship hopes of Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Joey Logano took a significant hit Sunday when each suffered a motor failure. Earnhardt's blown engine resulted in substantial fire underneath his car and he finished 35th. Logano, who led the opening 32 laps, placed 37th.
Consequently, Logano and Earnhardt sit in the bottom two positions of the Chase standings. Logano is ranked 12th, 52 points out of the lead. Earnhardt is 13th, 53 points in arrears of Kenseth.
"It's going to be really hard to win a championship this far behind," Earnhardt said. "We have some pretty tough competition in the Chase. The average finish is going to be inside the top 10 to win the championship. So you can do the numbers, you can do the math."
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Standings
|13||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||2010||-53||0|
|17||Martin Truex Jr.||717||-1346||1|
|19||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||680||-1383||0|
|20||Juan Pablo Montoya||668||-1395||0|