I've found the reaction to Chris Buescher's Pocono win intriguing. 

Many of the same folks who are praising the win by an underdog are also decrying the fact that a driver who has only two other finishes better than 20th, could be in the Chase.

Why? They say they have no shot at the title; they'll be out in the first round. But, isn't this what this format is all about, encouraging winning?

Chris Buescher is running a full season for Front Row Motorsports. They have attempted to qualify for every race. If they make the top 30, they will have met all of NASCAR's criterion for making the Chase.  So, what's the problem?

Over the next few weeks, while they try to get into the top 30 and, maybe, stay there, Front Row will get more attention than they have in this season-to-date combined.

If they make the Chase, they will get millions of dollars worth of attention. That's invaluable to a team that is trying to stay competitive in this sport.

So what if they go out after the first round?  It's progress

And, what if they don't? What's that worth?