This Saturday night at Richmond will not feature the mad dash to the finish in the race to the Chase like we’ve seen over the last few years because the field is basically set.
Two spots are open in the 12-driver field with five drivers eligible, but it would take some serious craziness to happen for the two that are in, Greg Biffle and Clint Bowyer, to miss out.
All Biffle has to do is finish 42nd or better while Bowyer has to finish 28th or better. No driver in the short race to the Chase history has overcome such a deficit coming to the final race to make it.
For whatever it’s worth, just because they are still mathematically alive, Ryan Newman is 117 points out, Jamie McMurray 128 points out and Mark Martin is 147 points out.
This week’s race gives the Chase drivers one last chance to gain bonus points for the 10-race Chase for the Championship. Every driver in the Chase will be set at 5,000 points and will have 10 bonus points added on for each of their wins during the first 26 races of the season.
Currently, Jimmie Johsnon and Denny Hamlin would be given 50 bonus points for their five wins on the season followed by Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch with three wins each.
Look for the Joe Gibbs teammates, Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch, to take Richmond, followed by the Hendrick and Childress drivers.