Race Blog

2013 was a page-turning, eyebrow-raising, history making, and sometimes sleep-inducing season. The highly hyped Gen-6 cars took to the track as NASCAR's solution to the gripes about the lack of manufacturer autonomy and inability for the Cars of Tomorrow to race well. NASCAR still needs to tweak the car and some other elements of the competition rules to make the racing action better, but the cars received less than a tenth of the criticism of their predecessors.

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Posted by Doug Turnbull

Chase suspense over, Kenseth and Johnson worth heralding: The suspense for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series finale is about as great as my chances of driving in the race. Jimmie Johnson and Matt Kenseth had been bump drafting each other in the Chase, swapping points leads and maintaining narrow margins through the first eight races. But a poor day at Phoenix for Kenseth's No. 20 team - a mixture of Kenseth's worst handling car all season and a botched pit stop or two - relegated the 2003 Cup champ to a 23rd-place finish, the team's worst finish in a couple of months. This Arizona demise was similar to Denny Hamlin's title-hurting run there in 2010.

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Posted by Doug Turnbull

Jimmie Johnson dominated Sunday's AAA 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, leading a blistering 255 of 334 laps, en route to his 6th win of the season. No one else had a chance. Other contenders Kyle Busch and Matt Kenseth each sped on pit road on green flag stops, ending their chances to get close to the No. 48. Kenseth's penalty was early enough for him to finish 4th and break his tie with Johnson atop the standings - he trails be seven points. Busch's miscue on the final green flag stop took him from the top 5 to 13th at race's end. That was even more disappointing, considering Busch hit the wall early in the race and drove from almost 30th to the top 5, only to lose half of those spots again. The points are close between Kenseth and Johnson, but the race was not.

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Posted by Doug Turnbull