Brad Keselowski has sealed up the number one spot in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship Chase race with his win at Richmond last weekend.
Now the question on the minds of many NASCAR fans is if anyone can catch him? There are plenty of drivers that should not be counted out such as Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Jeff Gordon.
The new Chase format eliminates drivers if they don't perform well. The win and you're in format continues but Keselowski says that even though he has the number one seed going in that anything can happen. According to the driver certain tracks in the last ten races can be considered wild card races.
“You see a lot of wrecks at Kansas and Talladega, that makes it really tough to control the outcome,” he said. “You go to Charlotte and win in that bracket and get to the next round, that will be a huge momentum swing for a team.”
Wild Card Tracks
Keselowski is right! There are some wild card tracks in the final ten races of the chase. Perhaps the number one wild card to consider is any race weekend at Talladega Superspeedway. While the track may offer up some of the best racing in the chase there's a good chance a driver could be collected in the "Big One" at any time.
The good news for Keselowski is that he has a pretty nice record at the famed track in central Alabama. He's chalked up a win there and several good finishes. The flip side of the coin is that he has also had his fair share of the Talladega Wild Card!
During the spring race Keselowski wrecked after passing Danica Patrick. Shortly afterwards he caused a massive pileup while trying to gain six laps back. Keselowski says that there's a couple of drivers to watch heading into the final races including the ones he considers to be wild cards.
“I think my teammate Joey (Logano) and Jeff Gordon will be the toughest,” he said. “I really think Joey and Jeff are the two biggest threats."
The Chase Made Easy
If you're still scratching your heard about how the Chase will work then worry no more! There are ten races in the Chase. There are three elimination rounds. Each of the three rounds is made up of three races each. Then the final race is for the Championship. After each elimination round four drivers are cut from the Chase. A win by a driver in a round automatically advances him into the next round.
This is how eliminations work. Remember 3-4, 3-4, 3-4, and Champion! The 16-driver field will be cut to 12 drivers after the third race or first elimination round. Then after three more races four more drivers will be cut from the chase leaving eight drivers. Then after three more races four more drivers are eliminated leaving four drivers. Those four drivers head to the last race at Homestead fighting for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship!