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Premium Member
@wdwfan4ver , that was some interesting background history in your recent posts. I think NASCAR should hire you for the position of archive manager. (I don't know if there is such a job there, but I think they should probably create it for you! :happy:) Thanks for sharing all the above--fascinating reading here, first thing this morning.


Well-Known Member
Since I mentioned Ernie Elliott engines, I might as well as mention about Bill Elliott. I thought Kevin Harvick deserved to be ranked higher than Bill Elliott. My argument is Bill had better equipment than Kevin did, but Kevin was the better overall driver. Bill Elliott was one of the weaker short track drivers that became a cup champion and was not the best road course driver. Kevin really doesn't have a weakness although he never won at Pocono yet.

While Bill made the big mistake of being an owner/driver from 1995 to 2000, I don't think it would affect his ranking much. I think would've been interesting with him with Yates since Bill had outstanding capabilities on horsepower power tracks such as Michigan and Pocono. I don't think would do much to change Bill's Short track reputation.

Kevin was overachieving with RCR before leaving them after 2013. Bill Elliott in the 1980s had the best engines and explains why Bill won so many Michigan races in the 1980s and was great at Pocono. Bill as a driver was very good at Darlington, Rockingham and Dover in his prime for tracks under 1.5 miles. Bill was legendary at Daytona and Talladega before NASCAR put restricter plates parts on the cars in 1988. What Bill did at Darlington and Rockingham as a driver was a big deal because those tracks were more on driver than engines and equipment.

The only thing with Dover with Bill was he was much better on Asphalt there than he was on concrete. Dover was changed from Asphalt to concrete after the fall 1994 race. The other thing is Dover was much tougher track than it was for the last 20 years because it was 500 mile through Spring of 1997 and it was challenge for race cars to last that long because it tricky track and it was not easy on equipment

The 9 car in the 1980s had great equipment and had the best engines in the mid and late 80s. Bill's short track abilities was one of the reasons he only won one championship in the cup series. Darrell Waltrip only won 3 races in 1985 compare to Bill's 11, but won the championship. What happened was Short tracks took up 8 out of 28 cup races and Darrell is known as one of the greatest short track drivers of all time. The only reason Bill had a championship is due to Rusty being a flawed great driver himself and Bill won one out of his 2 career cup short track races.

Kevin is a solid short track driver. There are better short track drivers in Kevin's era, but he's able to hold own unlike Bill Elliott or Bobby Labonte as an example. 6 short track wins by Kevin isn't bad in Kevin's era because the cup series from 1997 to at least 2020 has only 6 short track dates a year on the cup schedule.

I'm going into Rusty Wallace a little bit. I don't think Rusty is being underrated and I don't think he was overrated. What happened to Rusty in 1988 was Rusty had bad finishes at his strengths as a driver and Bill won the championship by 24 points. Bill in 1988 had his best year as a short track driver with his worst finish being 12th with 4 top 10 finishes including a win. Rusty was a master short track driver in his era like Dale Earnhardt sr was, but he was an early crash at the 2nd Richmond race in 1988 with him finishing 35th and Bill finished 7th.

Rusty was known as a great Pocono driver, but he found trouble finishing 24th and Bill won the Pocono race. Pocono was one of Bill's best tracks. Rusty after Richmond's 35th place finish was on fire, but it was too late despite having 7 straight top 5s with 4 cup wins.

I called Rusty flawed because he was a so-so 1.5 mile racer with 4 career 1.5 mile track wins in cup, decent Darlington driver with no cup wins there, and a bad restricter plate record and explains how a 55 cup winner only has 1 career cup title.


Well-Known Member
I'm getting out of the ranking for a short time for some NASCAR news.

NASCAR announced their 2019 schedule for the cup series and there is no changes in the order except for the dates due to Easter being on a different date.

AstraZeneca announced they are the primary sponsor for the 3 car at Texas this coming weekend, and will be an associate sponsor for rest of the season.


Well-Known Member
I did find out out that 4 people at Fox including Brad Keselowski ranked Dale Sr. 8th and explains his ranking being 5th. 8th is way too low for Earnhardt. Brad basically said it is due to RCR chasing championship and never break down type of a team and called Earnhardt a very aggressive drive on a Conservative race team. Brad also mentioned Dale won more championships than you expected due to amount of wins. Wins don't tell the whole story on the driver like the amount of crew chiefs Dale won his first cup championship.

What Brad said is true about RCR, you have to look at competition, and how the points system was run. The 1975 to 2003 points system I grew up with depended a lot on durability on equipment and not getting bad finishes. As far as Dale's wins goes, Dale actually raced less races in his prime per season than the current generation of NASCAR drivers including Jimmie Johnson.

When Dale was a rookie in cup, there was 31 races that year, but NASCAR started to cut races down starting in 1982 with there being only 30 cup races. The cup series was down to 28 races in 1985 before adding Watkin's Glen in 1986. The cup drivers from 1986 to 1992 only raced 29 points races per season. The expansion the cup schedule really started with New Hampshire in 1993 and Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 1994. When tracks like Texas Motor Speedway got added on the cup schedule, Dale was not at his peak. What I'm getting at Star drivers of the 1980s and early 1990s was going to have more wins in that time period if their were 36 cup races each season.

I'm guessing Brad had Cale Yarborough, and Darrell Waltrip ahead of Earnhardt besides Jeff Gordon, David Pearson. Jimmie Johnson, and Richard Petty. I know Brad had Bobby Allison ranked ahead of Dale Sr. There are flaws with Bobby Allison, Cale and Darrell that prevents them to be ahead of most people's ranking ahead of Earnhardt.

Bobby Allison is won 84 cup races according NASCAR, but only has one cup title. Bobby's history of not getting a long with his owners is why how won with so many different owners, but I think it affected Bobby for championships. I said Bobby didn't get along with owners is Bobby Won for over 10 owners in NASCAR from 1966 to 1988 and that is way too many for a driver that is so talent like Bobby Allison.

Cale Yarborough won 83 races, but he usually isn't ranked higher for multiple facts. While Cale raced full time 6 times in his career. having 3 championships prevented from being ranked in the top 5 besides never winning the Coca cola 600. Dale in his era won all the majors besides being a 7 time champ. I have a lot of respect for Cale's reason for not being full time after the 1980 season because he wanted to spend more time with his kids. Cale even said that on television in the past.

Darrell Waltrip was a great short track driver, great at Charlotte at time aerodynamics didn't play role at all, very good road course driver and really didn't had much of a weakness in his prime.

Darrell's ranking is his Competition in the late 1970s to around 1983 or 1984. From 1981 to 1983, Darrell basically had Bobby Allison, a passed his prime Richard Petty, Terry Labonte as a conservative driver. and Bobby Allison as title threats. Bill Elliott was not a full time cup driver before 1983. Ricky Rudd was not entering his prime before 1983. To top it off Harry Gant didn't had the team to be a championship threat before 1984.

Earnhardt was not a title threat, but more on that later on why. Darrell basically face a small field of title threats. It was smaller than Dale faced from 1986 to 1994. It was not Darrell's fault.

David Pearson, and Richard Petty were not at their peak in the late 1970s as drivers. Buddy Baker was past his peak as a driver around 1980. Benny Parsons became a part time driver after 1981. Cale stopped being a full time driver after 1980 to spend more time with his kids. Neil Bonnett was in his prime, but he was part time up to 1983.

After Dale Sr. won a cup title in his 2nd full year in cup, people expected him to be a title contender again before 1986. People expected that because of how Dale won in 1980 cup championship. Dale's Crew chief starting the 1980 left the team after the World 600 despite Dale being the points leader and people expected Dale not to win that championship as a result since the replacement crew chief didn't turn 20 years old yet with Dale only being in his 2nd full cup year as a driver. Dale won the championship despite that crew chief change.

What happened to Dale was out of his control. Dale won the title in 1980, but his team owner Rod Osterlund was having money problems outside of NASCAR. What happened was Rod's money was in real estate, but the housing market was having problems in the 1970s to the early 1980s. Rod had to sell his team and sold it to a slimeball named Jim Stacy. Jim Stacy got back into NASCAR after he left it originally. Dale lefter Jim Stacy 4 races after the sale during the 1981 season due to him not trusting Jim and Jim wanting to give Dale 4 teammates. What Jim wanted was a 5 race team operation. Dale know about Stacy's past due to Neil bonnett and the fact Stacy was sued by Harry Hyde and Ferrel Harris in 1978 or 1979.

Earnhardt proved right of not trusting him since Stacy sponsored 7 cars in 1982 including Stacy's own 2 drivers. Jim was offering a lot of money for sponsorship in 1982 with it being 1 million dollars, but the 5 teams received any money from Jim Stacy due to Stacy's checks were bouncing.

Dale finished the 1981 season with Richard Childress. Richard at the time couldn't afford Dale for 1982 because the equipment wasn't there or the money. Dale though wanted to work for Richard in the future as a driver if the timing was right since the two already were friends before 1981. Dale went to Bud Moore, but Bud Moore didn't have the equipment to handle Dale's driving style at all due to all the equipment failures before going to RCR. Bud Moore had engine problems with Benny Parsons in 1981 despite Benny not being known for being rough on equipment and that meant it was not a good match from the beginning. Ricky Rudd was the better suited driver for Bud Moore.

Darrell got lucky that Osterlund didn't sell his race team before the 1981 season because Junior Johnson actually considered Dale as Cale Yarbrough's replacement. The reason it didn't happen was Junior Johnson known Rod had Dale Sr. under contract.


Well-Known Member
I thought Bobby Labonte was overrated. While Bobby Labonte is known to be a class act like his brother, his talent is much lower. While Bobby Labonte had two top five points finishes including his 2000 cup championship, there is stuff that needs to be examine. His a top 50 driver, but not 33. I thought drivers like Carl Edwards was better than Bobby Labonte. I saw Bobby's prime and Bobby was at his best at oval trucks 1.5 mile and bigger. Bobby only won 1 short track race in cup, 2 wins on 1 mile tracks and 1 win at Darlington. 17 of Bobby's 21 career cup wins came at tracks that were 1.5 mile or larger. Bobby never was known for his road racing abilities either.

Bobby's short track skills on the cup level are telling when he couldn't beat Rusty Wallace at Martinsville in 2004. Rusty at the time was on the decline as a driver. Bobby finishing 2nd to Joe Nemechek at Richmond in 2003 was another sign.

Bobby Labonte really was a top 6 to top 10 driver in his prime. How Bobby finished 2nd in points in 1999 and be champion in 2000 was due to circumstances. People claimed the 1995 to early 2000s be very loaded in talent on the cup level, but there is truth that needed to be told. When 1995 season started, the cup series had a lot drivers that were born in the 1940s and 1950s. Jeff Gordon, Bobby Labonte, Jeff Burton really took advantage of this. The catch is Jeff Burton and Jeff Gordon did a better job of taking advantage of it during the 1995 to 2000 time period. Jeff Gordon in his prime was going to be an outstanding driver no matter the circumstances.

I brought up Jeff Burton being better from the 1995 to 2000 era than Bobby was. When Jeff Burton went to Roush in 1996, he started 4 straight cup seasons finishing in the top 5 from 1997 to 2000. Jeff was a weak qualifier, he had more variety on wins. Out of Jeff's 21 cup wars, Jeff had 8 1 mile track wins, 2 darlington wins, 1 plate win, 3 short track wins, and 7 1.5 mile tracks wins. The problem with Jeff Burton was giving away wins such as 3 straight Darlington races from 1997 Southern 500 to 1998 Southern 500.

As far as Dale Jarrett goes, he was an ageless baby boomer before 2001 or 2002. Dale's Jarrett problem before 1995 was not being in the right ride. I can say that about Bobby Hamilton sr. also.

The depth of the field was affected by the deaths of Davy Allison and Alan Kulwicki. Ernie Irvan was never the same driver after he come back from his near death crash at Michigan in 1994 although he was a top 10 driver for Yates in 1996 and 1997. Those 3 events in the cup series affected in terms of driver moves including Bobby Labonte himself. Bobby Labonte got into Dale Jarrett's 18 car in 1995.

Rusty Wallace, Dale sr., Ricky Rudd, Bill Elliott and Terry Labonte were baby boomer drivers that were not in their prime in 1999 and 2000 despite finishing races in the top 10. I'm going more into those baby boomer drivers. Mark Martin was a baby boomer, but I think his prime ended after 1999 although his 2009 was great. Mark's 2000 to 2008 were mostly very good, not great.

While Rusty Wallace and Dale Earnhardt Sr. were competitive drivers, they were not at their peak in 1999 and 2000. Earnhardt was never quite the same driver after his 1996 Talladega crush in the 2nd race despite Dale finished 2nd in points in 2000. Dale's teammate at RCR from 1997 to 2001 was Mike skinner, but he was born in 1957.

When that Talladega crush happened in 1996, Dale was 45 at the time. Rusty's 2000 season was an outline for him in terms of wins because Rusty only had 1 win person from 1997 to 1999 and again in 2001. Rusty in 1996 turned 40 years old.

Ricky Rudd was not quite in his prime in 2000 and 2001. I think Yates equipment masked a decline on him. My reasoning is Rudd was the 2nd owner/driver of the 1990s and had a rep of making some teams better than they were such as Bud Moore, and Kenny Bernstein. When Rudd joined Yates in 2000, he was already 43 years old. Rudd in 1999 had a bad owner/driver season due to a combination of things including a single car team. Being a single car team in 1999 was not the way to go and did hurt Rudd. Rudd had signs of decline as an owner/driver in 1997, 1998 and 1999.

I don't know for sure if Bill Elliott was still in his prime in 1999 and 2000 due to him being a driver/owner and the fact he got a broken hip from the first 1996 Talladega race. Bill was already 40 years old when that broken hip happened. Bill's results with Ray Evernham showed, Bill still had something left in the tank, but not in his prime since Bill won 4 times in 3 years. Bill in 2003 also almost won at Kansas, but Newman's fuel mileage win prevented that. Bill cut a tire late in the 2003 homestead race and Bobby got his final cup win.

Bobby's own older brother Terry was on the decline as a driver. While Terry won the cup championship in 1996, Terry got worse each season left in the 20th century including only having 7 top 10s in 1999 despite racing for Hendrick Motorsports. Jeff Gordon in 1999 and 2000 wasn't as good as he was from 1995 to 1998 for a very good reason.

Ray Evernham left Hendrick Motorsports during the 1999 to start his own race team and Jeff Gordon needed time to jell with his new crew chief during the 2000 season.

During Bobby's final top 5 in points season in 2000, Dale Jr. and Matt Kenseth were only rookie drivers and were not in their prime yet.

I had Carl Edwards over Bobby Labonte because Carl finished 2nd in points 2 times, but was more well rounded as a driver of the two. Carl sucked at plate racing. While Carl sucked at Martinsville, Carl won 6 times at Bristol and Richmond combined. The truth is Carl would've won a championship in 2011 if there was no chase. Carl's 2011 season was similar to Matt Kensth's 2003 season. Carl 3 times combined at 2 1 mile tracks, 1 road course win, 2 pocono wins and 1 Darlington win besides having 1.5 mile track wins and 2 mile track wins.


Well-Known Member
Tim Richmond was very debatable to me to be in this list. Top driver lists are not supposed be about potential. There was no treatment for aids at the time he got it. When Tim was with Hendrick, he was showing more variety as a driver than he was before. That is what putting him on or off the list tough. Before Hendrick, Tim won 2 times at Riverside, 2 times at Pocono, and once at North Wilkesboro.

I don't know if Lee Petty belongs to be 10th. Lee had the most wins of the 1st generation of NASCAR drivers, but he was not the best of that bunch. Herb Thomas was the best. While Fox acted like Herb raced 10 years, but it was only 8. Herb raced in cup for a combined 3 races in 1957 and 1962. The problem was Herb Thomas had a career altering injury late in the 1956 season by some shady stuff in NASCAR based on what I read and was not the same physically.

Herb Thomas was hurt at a race track in Shelby, North Carolina called Cleveland County Fair Grounds.

This what what happened based on what I read:

Buck Baker's team owner Carl Kiekhaefer told NASCAR to add Cleveland County Fair Grounds to the cup schedule after it was made out and that track was owned by Carl Kiekhaefer. It was added at the last minute and it was the 4th to last race of the 1956 season. Carl was not happy that his ex driver Herb Thomas was leading in points over Buck Baker and Carl owned multiple race teams.

Carl gave Speedy Thompson the order to take out Herb Thomas as a way for Buck Baker to win the cup championship in NASCAR and Speedy Thompson did what he was told to do.

The injuries Herb Thomas had from that team order wreck was a concussion, and partially paralyzed for several years.

Before Herb's injuries, Herb had 3 Southern 500 wins. Herb had 48 wins and Lee Petty only had 26 cup wins. Herb had 2 championships and Lee only had 1. The other thing is not a lot of cup drivers drivers were after champions and that was very true in the years Lee Petty won his in 1958 and 1959.


Well-Known Member
I think Terry Labonte is a bit hard to rank despite being 26th according to Fox. Terry was the youngest cup champion in the Modern era before Jeff Gordon came along and most years between championships. I think his driving style actually hurt how talented he really was. Terry was a very good road racer in NASCAR standards in his era. Terry even won races in sports cars in his class back in the 1980s. Terry was very good short track driver, very good at 1 mile tracks, very good at Darlington, very good at Daytona and Talladega in his prime, and very capable at 1.5 mile tracks.

Terry was NASCAR's most extreme point race. Terry took advantage of NASCAR's points at the the time. NASCAR's points system from 1975 to 2003 was one that you don't need to win a lot of races as a way to win a championship because all you need to do is finish in the top 5 or the top 10. Terry looked at championships more than individual race trophies under the impression I have of him despite having 22 wins. I know for a fact that Terry had the equipment to more than 2 races in 1996 at Hendrick Motorsports.

There are two examples of Terry Labonte being an Extreme points racer.

The first example is the well known 1996 cup championship between Terry and his teammate Jeff Gordon. Terry had only 2 cup wins in 1996 compare to Jeff's 10. Terry had 21 top 5's that year out of 31 races. Jeff Gordon had the same amount of top 5's and top 10's in 1996, but Jeff had worse finishes than Terry in the races they didn't finish in the top 10. How Terry won it was by taking advantage of Jeff's misfortune at the fall 1996 Charlotte by winning the race. Terry was only 1 point away from tying Jeff after the Charlotte. Jeff had an off race at Rockingham and Terry finished 3rd. Terry got top 5's in the final 2 races after Rockingham.

The 2nd example with Terry was in 1982. Terry was in 1st place in points up after the 19th race of the 1982 season. If Terry didn't have 5 engine failures in the 1982 season, Terry would've won the cup championship without a win despite Darrell Waltrip have 12 wins and Bobby Allison having 8 wins that season. I'm sure NASCAR would have changed the points system if Terry won the cup championship in 1982 if he had no wins compare to two driver that won 20 of 30 cup races that season combined.


Well-Known Member
There is some news.

Daniel Suarez is going to race with a an avulsion fracture in his left thumb at Bristol with him wearing a brace in the car.

There is some Monster Energy Sponsor news. The contract is extended through 2019, but other news with Monster Engery. NASCAR claims it is highly unlikely that Monster Energy will sponsoring the cup series after the 2019 season. NASCAR is is working on a new sponsorship model for 2020 that would involve the tracks and television partners according to Steve Phelps, NASCAR Chief Operating Officer.


Well-Known Member
While I think Matt Kenseth is slightly underrated on the list, I think Mark Martin needs to be break down first. I am saying that because Matt and Mark had a Roush connection.

While Mark lost 5 championships, how he lost them needs to be examined first. I bringing this up do Mark Martin only got 2nd place in in points in 1994 because of because of Ernie Irvan's near fatal practice crash at Michigan on August 19th. Ernie Irvan had to miss rest of the 1994 season almost all the 1995 season due to what happened. Ernie Irvan suffered critical brain and lung injuries from the crash he cut a tire. Ernie Irvan was only given a 10 percent chance to live on August 19th, but he somehow survived.

Ernie Irvan was only 27 points away from Dale Earnhardt Sr. in 1994 cup championship when that near fatal practice happened after 20 races, and Mark was 4th in points 329 points down. Race Fans didn't have a chance to see an exciting points battle between than 6 time cup champion Dale Earnhardt vs the fastest driver of 1994 Ernie Irvan. Ernie was the fastest driver that year because he led the 2nd most laps all season despite only racing in 20 out 31 cup races and already had 13 top 5's. Rusty led 2,142 laps, but he did that in 31 races compare to Ernie's 1,781 laps led in just 20 races.

I don't know if Ernie could've won the championship instead Dale having his 7 cup championship, but Mark was very unlikely to finish 2nd in points no matter who won that championship if Ernie didn't have that crash.

Mark was not going not going to catch Ernie Irvan unless the 28 was really fading down the stretch if Ernie didn't win the championship over Dale. Dale's 1994 season was way better than Mark Martin's was with Dale having 20 top 5's compare to Mark's 15 top 5's and Dale had 5 more top 10's. Mark had no place in the points at all to be 2nd that reason outside circumstances outside of Mark's control like what happened to Ernie Irvan.

I'm going to address the other 4 points battles. Mark Martin and the 6 team actually did a bad job of capitalizing on Dale Earnhardt in 1990 although people on a racing website pointed to Mark Martin's 46 point penalty at Richmond as the 2nd race of the year. Mark lost by 20 points in 1990.

Mark got the points lead from race 10 that year at Coca Cola 600 through the end of race 27 at Rockingham, but Mark's team did leave points on the table. The truth is that team shouldn't have done that considering Earnhardt in 1990 won 3 out 4 restrictor plate races and could've won the Daytona 500 if it wasn't for a cut tire. Dale in 1990 was still at his peak at Darlington, short tracks, and Atlanta. That means a very tough driver to beat at a championship. Dale lucked into a Michigan win that year with Dale having 9 cup wins in 1990.

Dale had a rough stretch from 1990 Coca cola 600 through the 1st 1990 Pocono race. Dale had 3 races of 30th or worse in that stretch and he finished 13th at Pocono. Dale also finished 25th at the fall Charlotte race race. Mark finishing 14th at the Pocono race that Dale finished 13 is an issue considering Mark's career record at Pocono. Mark needed to be his usually his top 5 or top 10 self at Pocono in that Pocono race. That was not as a problem as Mark finished 14th the fall Charlotte race in 1990 at time when Dale finished 25th.

The 1998 Points battle between Mark Mark and Jeff Gordon was not a true points battle. Mark had the 2nd best team that year with the 24 team had one of the best modern era seasons even. Mark's 1998 season would been good enough to win a good amount of championships.

The 2002 points battle between Tony Stewart and Mark Martin. Mark's only win was a fluke. Jimmie had the car to win, but made a pit road mistake by sliding through the pits and lost 10 positions around 60 laps to go. Stewart beaten Mark for the Champion by 38 points. How that happened was Mark Martin had a fluke crash at Talladega. Mark Martin claimed that something had broke in his steering on the pace laps while starting 2nd and got into Jimmie Johnson.

The 5th time Mark finished 2nd in points in 2009 was caused by NASCAR's chase system at the time. According to Racing-reference's website, Jeff Gordon would've finished 2nd in points if there was no chase system in 2009. The only reasons Jeff only had 1 win that season according memory was bad restarts and I believe some bad pit calls.

Mark's problem as a driver to me was he was not aggressive at all and combine it with the engines Roush had before Roush -Yates engines was formed. The truth is Roush in the 1990s was more well rounded than it was than the late part of the 2000s. Roush had the equipment to win at all short tracks, Restrictor plates, Darlington, Rockingham, Phoenix, Dover, road Courses, New Hampshire, Pocono, 1.5 mile tracks, and 2 mile tracks back in the 1990s before the equipment took a dump in 2001 despite them not having the best engines.

I think Mark as driver could ranked one of two steps down due not having a cup championship considering the capabilities of Matt Kenseth.


Well-Known Member
I think Matt Kenseth was better than Mark and should be ranked as such.

I think Matt's problem was not leaving Roush sooner. Matt proved to be more well rounded at Joe Gibbs Racing than at Roush. Roush struggled at Martinsville for years despite them winning at the track for Mark Martin, Jeff Burton and Kurt Busch. Matt was more talented than Carl Edwards. The other problem with Matt was the fact Matt had a career high for wins in his 14th full time cup season, speaks something was wrong with Roush.

Carl couldn't do all 3 short tracks and Matt was able to do. I'm point Matt did much better at Martinsville at Joe Gibbs racing than Carl did at JGR. Matt almost won at Martinsville with JGR. Carl was the better Road Racer, but Matt was the better plate racer.

Matt was able to win a championship unlike Mark and I think stands for something. Mark in his prime had better equipment at Roush than Matt did at parts of his prime at Roush. I think Roush didn't show all of Matt's talent as driver. Case in point is Matt won three time at New Hampshire for Gibbs, but didn't win there for Roush. The odd thing is Roush had drivers that won there such as Greg Biffle. I wonder if Information was shared.

Roush took a nosedive after Matt left the Organization for Roush and the speaks a lot about Matt. NASCAR took away one of Matt's great tracks in Rockingham and I think hurt his career totals some. Matt already won 2 times in eight starts and was on his way better better at that track than Mark Martin.

Matt at JGR was capable of winning at all short tracks, 1 mile tracks, Darlington, 1.5 mile tracks, 2 mile tracks, and somehow figured not to be as bad at road racing. Matt learned from Kyle Busch and Denny how do better at New Hampshire, Martinsville, and road racing. Those three tracks are not as much on equipment as the driver. The only catch is the organization needs to be focused all types of tracks. If the JGR version of Matt existed sooner, Matt would've been much higher.

The JGR version of Matt Kenseth was a driver that was capable of winning 60 to 70 career cup racers if that version of Matt existed much earlier in his cup career. The JGR version of Matt did start to appear in 2011 and 2012 at Roush by Matt was determined to be better at qualifying as a driver and he did that. Matt only won 4 out of his 20 poles before he turned 39 years old.

Before 2011, Matt was a better version of Jeff Burton. Matt was a bad qualifier like Jeff Burton was, but was able to close the deal to win a race better.

What happened to Matt Kenseth at JGR was what happened to Kevin at Stewart-Haas. The talent always there, but the equipment held them back.

Matt was weaker than Mark at Pocono and Road Courses. Matt was better at plate racing than Mark was and Matt had 2 Daytona 500 wins. Matt and Mark to me were equals at 1.5 mile track and 2 mile tracks. Matt was as good as Mark at short tracks or maybe a little better. Matt was better at New Hampshire than Mark was.

I think Mark had advantage over Matt at Roush from an equipment standpoint. Roush still had well rounded equipment through 2005 or 2006. After Mark left after 2006, they seemed to be focused on stuff like 1.5 mile tracks, 2 mile tracks, and 1 mile tracks.


Well-Known Member
NASCAR made announcements today.

Chase Elliott got penalized a 2nd time this year. This time it is for a window brace violation. His Crew chief Alan Gustafson is suspended for 2 races and will be fined $50,000. The 9 team also got a 20 driver point penalty and a 20 owner point penalty.

NASCAR made their all-Star race announcements. The all-star race areo package has, a six-inch-high spoiler with two 12-inch ears, a restrictor plate and the 2014 style splitter. The restrictor plate rules are based on the 2017 Xfinity Indianapolis Motor Speedway race package. That package for the Xfinity series was a good package for the track, but I don't know about Charlotte. Charlotte was designed much different than Indianapolis Motor Speedway is.

4 drivers will be able to get into the all-star race from the Monster open with 3 drivers winning stages and the 4th getting the fan vote. Monster Open has 3 stages. The first will be 20 laps, the 2nd will be 20 laps and the final stage will be 10 laps.

There will be 4 stages for the All-star race. The first stage will be 30 laps, 2nd stage 20 laps, 3rd stage 20 laps, and final stage 10 laps. No yellow flap laps with count under the final stage. NASCAR Overtime will be in play for all stages. NASCAR announced there will be no mandatory pit strategy.


Well-Known Member
I do have some thoughts on a couple current drivers on the top 50 list I didn't mention yet.

Logano is a bit early to be on the list considering Jim Paschal isn't on it. The problem with Logano to me is he only had only 2 wins in his first 4 seasons and the first win was a fluke. The best way to put it is if Bobby Labonte or Ryan Newman was able stay out a little bit longer, he would've won the race instead of Joey since he won a rain shorten race that most drivers already pitted by the time rain came. 18 cup wins at this point is very iffy to make on the top 50.

Martin Truex is very questionable where he is ranked. While Truex has a win, his resume in cup is a big concern. Truex before going the 78 car only had 2 cup wins. I thought Truex or his team at MWR gave away at least 2 races. MWR was a good not great organization before they started to give team orders to Clint Bowyer to cause a caution at the 2013 Richmond race as way for Truex to make the chase. I think Truex didn't completely take advantage of his equipment although he did win a road course there. The problem with Truex besides what he did before Furniture Row Racing is the type of tracks he won over there. Truex is a good road racer, but he only has 3 oval wins less than 1.5 miles. I think Truex at this point is very similar to Bobby Labonte.

I didn't mention Kurt Busch yet. I think Kurt isn't overly underrated or overrated. Kurt was not going to be a champion without the chase, but 29 cup wins is nothing to sneeze at. I do think his personality did affect his career and him leaving Roush for Penske was a downgrade at the time. At the time Kurt was fired from Penske, he built up Penske as a better organization than it was at the time Kurt came there in 2006. Penske was behind and I don't think Ryan Newman was never as good as his early years gave the impression he was. Kurt was responsible for building up Brad's team by saying stuff on the radio that him and brad were racing junk basically.

I thought Kurt overachieved in 2013 with the 78 car. Kurt's problem that year was his pit crew. That pit crew of his lost space on pit road and I think he could've had 2 or 3 wins that year if it wasn't for them. The 78 team in 2013 was not the team they were with Truex. Furniture Row Racing was building up their team starting Regan Smith and Kurt Busch did take them to the next step. Truex actually got a wonderful ride that Kurt built up, but Kurt didn't get the JGR support that Truex got in 2016 or 2017. All Kurt had was RCR support in 2013 and we all know RCR had drivers that were better than the equipment. Truex is similar to Bobby Labonte except Truex won 2 times on Road course and Bobby has a plate win and short track win.

Brad Keselowski deserves where he is in ranking. While some people compare Brad to Earnhardt from a driving style, I don't see it. While brad can be aggressive, Brad is can win more ways than Earnhardt could. Brad and Paul Wolfe are won races by fuel mileage. The 2 team likes to out think its competition. Brad to me is the best plate driver currently in NASCAR. Brad does not any majors, but I think he has more pure talent than Truex. There are better Short track drivers, but Brad is a good short track driver.


Premium Member
Chase Elliott got penalized a 2nd time this year. This time it is for a window brace violation. His Crew chief Alan Gustafson is suspended for 2 races and will be fined $50,000.

What in heaven's name is a window brace violation? Most of the inspection standards are over my head to begin with, as I'm not a mechanic. But I'm baffled by how a window brace, of all things, could affect the outcome of his driving?

King Raccoon 77

I have never been in a bar in Milwaukee !
Premium Member
Original Poster
What in heaven's name is a window brace violation? Most of the inspection standards are over my head to begin with, as I'm not a mechanic. But I'm baffled by how a window brace, of all things, could affect the outcome of his driving?
If the window flexes more than allowed then it could create an aero advantage.


Well-Known Member
What in heaven's name is a window brace violation? Most of the inspection standards are over my head to begin with, as I'm not a mechanic. But I'm baffled by how a window brace, of all things, could affect the outcome of his driving?
A Window Brace Violation is when window brackets all around the car aren't sturdy and secure.

When window brackets all around the car aren't sturdy and secure, it gives the car an areodynamic advantage over other cars on the race track.


Premium Member
If the window flexes more than allowed then it could create an aero advantage.
A Window Brace Violation is when window brackets all around the car aren't sturdy and secure.

When window brackets all around the car aren't sturdy and secure, it gives the car an areodynamic advantage over other cars on the race track.

Thank you both. Odd, that I never heard of this before, as I'm sure it's not the first time something like this has come up. Well, it sounds like the officials are right on top of things!


Well-Known Member
I didn't address Denny Hamlin yet. It is very hard to bring Denny any higher for multiple reasons. Denny isn't strong mentally as a cup driver based on how handle his champion title hopes in 2011 and by the amount of speeding penalties he's been getting. I think he's his own worse enemy in cup based on how many times he beat himself. The odd thing is I didn't remember Denny getting a lot of speeding penalties early in his cup career. While Denny has 31 cup wins, I think he could've got more if he didn't speed on pit road.

The 2nd problem is Denny has a history of injuries and it makes you wonder if it affects him at time.

Denny as a driver is one of the best short track drivers in cup in his generation. Denny can win at all three short tracks and is better at that than Jimmie Johnson. Denny can win on every single type of a track in cup.

Kyle Busch is hard to rank. I think he's the most talented driver in cup currently, but his accomplishments outside of the cup series needs to be excluded for his ranking. No cup driver tried running for two championships in a year before Harvick was forced to in 2001. The only truck series and Xfinity series stuff that needs to be looked at with Kyle is the stuff before 2005.

I'll be mentioning Dale Jr. with his ranking Fox gave him on a future post.


Well-Known Member
Dale Jr is a difficult person to rank as driver. 26 cup wins is enough to on a top 50 NASCAR cup driver list. There are three problems with him for ranking.

The first one is fans tend to overrate him as a cup driver, but the haters underrate just as bad. They act like Dale Jr. was handed things by a silver platter in terms of his racing career, but that was false according to his cousins and Dale Jr. himself. The truth is Dale's dad actually didn't work on his son's race cars in the late model ranks at all. Dale Jr. had to work on his own cars like Bobby Allison did to his son Davey Allison. Dale jr. actually got a 2 year automotive degree before he first showed up in the Busch series as a driver.

The 2nd problem is Dale Jr. had a lot concussions and multiple injuries in his NASCAR Career. What I know is Dale had his first NASCAR concussion from the 1998 Busch series race and he couldn't watch in person to see his dad win his only Daytona 500 as a result. He suffered at least 6 concussions after that including one at Auto Club in 2002. Dale suffered a shoulder injury from a 1999 Milwaukee Mile crash and suffered burns from his 2004 sports car crash. I'm guessing he also got a concussion from the sports car crash since he claimed he saw his dad pull him out of the sports car. All those concussions and injuries I think affected his racing ability along the way. Dale Jr. raced at a sport car race in 2004 because he wanted to improve his road racing skills. The truth is his road racing skills were not good and even his dad acknowledged it before his death. Dale Jr. got a Road Racing win in the Busch series, but it was cause by transmission problems on the final 2 laps of the race by the driver that was leading on a restart.

The 3rd problem is he has a lot more chapters in his full time cup career from 2000 to 2017 than most drivers having in their 18 years racing in cup and that makes it tough to rank. The problem first started when his dad died at the 2001 Daytona 500 and it added at least a couple chapters than wouldn't happen otherwise. The fact is His dad was able to control the media pressure for his son to a point and DEI was affected by Dale Sr.'s death. It is very possible, we might've seen more out of Dale Jr. if his dad didn't die from the 2001 Daytona 500 crash because Chapters 3 and 4 in Dale Jr's cup career wouldn't have happened.

I'm going to address the chapters of Dale Jr on this post before summing up him on the track on the next post from me.

Dale Jr's first chapter of cup career was the beginning of his cup career aka 2000 through 2001. This is where he was a rookie in cup and deal his dad's death in his 2nd year in cup. Dale jr. showed promise at the time including 2001 and had a chance to win at Texas a 2nd time and almost win at Atlanta in the fall with him leading over 100 laps the 2 races.

Dale's 2nd chapter year is the peak DEI years aka 2002 to 2004. Dale was affected by a concussion in 2002, but still led over a 1,000 laps. Dale led a thousand laps each season from 2002 to 2004. There is a person that I seen posted in different websites that is very good at analyzing drivers by important stats revisited Dale Jr.'s career and thought he underrated Dale Jr at DEI by what Dale did in 2003 and thought what he did in 2004 was underrated also. Some people including myself thought the sports car crash in 2004 with burns on body did something to him as a driver. He was more 2nd tier driver after 2004 season. Dale from 2002 from 2004 actually should've won more than a combined 11 races in that time period. Dale had races he was good enough win races on short tracks and actually could've won a Phoenix race in 2003. The truth is Dale in 2002 to 2003 was a driver that only won one non restrictor plate, but Dale was way better than his wins suggested. There were teams his team did let him down like at Phoenix in 2002.

Dale's 3rd Chapter was the decline of DEI from 2005 to 2007. While Dale might have lost something from his burns in 2004 from the road racing accident, His step mom made the mistake of switching crews on her Step son. Dei also lost its advantage at plate racing in 2005. There also was problem hind the scenes that I think hurt his career that his step mom was responsible for. There had been people that left DEI due to Theresa Earnhardt. Dale Jr. even tried to buy his step mom's share of the company due to the decline he was seeing, but she was starting to due stuff out of spite that even continued through 2016 with Kerry Earnhardt. What happened is a when a famous celebrity dies, things show up if the celebrity had kids from previous marriages like Dale Sr. did.

It's a well known fact after Dale Sr.'s death that Theresa Earnhardt very rarely showed at the race track at all after her husband's death and people around NASCAR was speculating that Theresa really care about her husband's legacy and to make money off it. What she did to Kerry Earnhardt, Dale Sr's oldest son is farther proof of that. Theresa basically sued Kerry for using his birthright name on his own furniture business because she felt that her late husband was the only Earnhardt and would sue anyone uses Earnhardt as part of a business outside of her. Dale could've won a couple more races than he did in the 2005 to 2007, but issues at DEI were showing up on the track.

Dale's 4th chapter in his career was the trying and Struggles at Hendrick aka 2008 to 2010. Dale underachieved in his first year at DEI, but he suffered burned out in 2009 and 2010. Dale in 2009 was making uncommon pit road mistakes due to lack of focus. What happening to Dale was the pressure of being the son of a NASCAR legend caught up to him and he had too many off the track things doing. What Dale Jr. did get was a father figure in Rick Hendrick after Dale Jr's dad died.

Dale's 5th chapter was the comeback aka 2011 to 2015. Those years were his best since 2004, but he did not the per speed for leading laps like he did earlier in his career. I think it was caused by his injuries and concussions. Dale had 4 straight years of 20 or more top 10s in a season from 2012 to 2015. He also was starting to get better at road racing.

The final Chapter of his racing career was the decline and we all known that caused by back luck in 2016 before the concussions. Dale Jr.'s concussions in 2016 affected him on the track in 2017.

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