The Texas Motor Speedway dons a quad-oval, 1.5-mile track similar to the Charlotte and Atlanta Motor Speedways. Since its inaugural race in 1997, the current twelve in the Chase have dominated the track; Carl Edwards owns the record for most wins with three, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, and Matt Kenseth share the record for most top 5s with 7, Mark Martin has notched the most top 10's at 11, and Denny Hamlin has the best average finish of any driver at the track.
This weekend, the Texas Motor Speedway will host another NASCAR three-race weekend. As the Sprint Cup Chase nears a close, there will no doubt be some exciting racing for Texas NASCAR fans. Let's turn the spotlight on three drivers that look like hopeful candidates that might finally beat Jimmie Johnson for the Cup.
Tony Stewart stunned Johnson at Martinsville Speedway by snatching away the win behind the wheel of his No. 14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet; Stewart took the lead on the final restart and remained on the point for the final three laps of the 500-lap/263-mile race. The victory was Stewart's third in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup and vaulted him into second place in the standings, eight points behind leader Carl Edwards. Stewart won for the 42nd time in his career. "He'd better be worried," Stewart said of Edwards after the race, "that's all I can say. He's not going to have an easy three weeks."
Carl Edwards has remained a steady championship contender throughout the first six weeks of the Chase, leading in points for the past five weeks. Edwards has an average finish of 5.6 thus far in the Chase, but is without a win. His 11th-place finish at Talladega was the worst of his Chase, but was like a win considering the fate of other Chase contenders. Edwards cannot simply cruise to his first Sprint Cup Series championship, as Stewart trails him by only 8 points. Edwards finished 18th there earlier in the year with two top10 finishes in 2010. Edwards' chances for winning the Sprint Cup Series should increase if he can make significant gains this weekend. The Roush Fenway Racing driver has three wins at Texas, one win at Phoenix and two wins at Homestead.
This year, Wisconsin native Matt Kenseth has three wins, including one in the Chase at Charlotte. Again using a consistent approach to the season, Kenseth has an average finish of 11.4, second only to Edwards' 10.0. Much like his Roush Fenway Racing teammate, Kenseth will also need to have a solid showing here in Texas, as he has slipped to 5th place in the Chase. Also like Edwards, Kenseth has a pretty good track record at Texas, Phoenix and Homestead. Kenseth is a proven champion and has the experience of Jimmy Fennig calling the shots atop the pit box. This year's title battle could come down to a battle among Roush Fenway teammates and their performance in Texas will be crucial to these drivers.
NO LIMITS GARAGE PARTY
New for the 2011 series- The LiftMaster Garage will be transformed into the NO LIMITS Garage Party filled with spectacular performers including:
• 100 X 100 Rodeo Arena with Bull Riding
• Live Music from "LC Rocks"
• Mechanical Bulls
• Live Longhorns for photo ops
• WinStar World Casino Gaming Tent
• Pig Races
• Pit Stop Challenge
• The Great American Sweethearts
• Gun Fighters and Saloon Girls
• Free Giveaways
This exclusive party is open to all 2011 Season and November Weekend 4-Pack customers! Current Season and Weekend 4-Pack customers should have received their tickets to the garage party with the rest of their tickets.