|07/01/21||Excellence on Display|
|06/18/21||Not So Starry-eyed|
|06/09/21||Bringing the Energy|
|06/01/21||It Doesn’t Come Easy|
|05/27/21||The Learning Curve|
Easy Does It…Or Not
This driving race cars at the highest level isn't easy. Just in case you were having doubts.
Three drivers went to Bristol having posted top-10 finishes in each of the season's first seven races. As good as Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano and Martin Truex, Jr. have looked this year, you felt like, at least one of them would have a decent shot at Morgan Shepherd's 1990 of 11 straight top-10s to open the season.
All three streaks ended at the Tennessee half-mile. And, that's just top-10s we're talking about. But, the variety of tracks, and the quality of the competition simply makes long positive streaks difficult.
Winning is another matter. On the same night their streaks ended, so did one for one of the sport's most talented drivers; Matt Kenseth. In his last 51 races, he's posted 19 top-5s and 30 top-10s. Both numbers among the best in the sport. But, no wins.
Little things matter. A bobble in the pits, an ill-timed caution, or just simply being in the wrong place at the wrong time. They all contribute to final results.
In baseball, nobody in the last 70 years had been able to get just 4 hits in every 10 at bats. In Sprint Cup only the best of the best finish in the top-10 two of every three races. Why? In both cases the answer is the same: it's tough.