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Hot 20 at Bristol, where everyone will wind up hot at one time or another

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I get it. Some folks watch NASCAR for the wrecks. They probably do not watch often, maybe taking in the action from Daytona or Talladega, where one bad move causes a whole lot of bad tidings. I love those tracks, too, but I love watching people doing exciting things that I simply cannot. Even if I got sponsored by Depends, it probably would be a good idea if I just let the opportunity pass me by. Now, if I there is any race I watch due to the prospect of mayhem, that would be Bristol.

You have all these nice shiny race cars, all 40 of them, placed on an oval just over a half-mile in distance, and let them have at it for 500 laps. Sometimes, you just have to use the fender horn to make your way, and most times that will leave a mark. It also is likely to tick off the driver just moved out of the way, and then the fun really begins.

Hot 20? Hell, more like a hot forty by the time Sunday’s action is completed.

1. KYLE BUSCH – 2 WINS – 259 PTS
One driver who could have stopped Kyle’s winning streak is currently 78-years old.

2. JIMMIE JOHNSON – 2 WINS – 253 PTS
A true magician. Now you see Austin, now you don’t.

3. KEVIN HARVICK – 1 WIN – 252 PTS
Raced at Texas and saw a pair of holes-in-one at Augusta…and that is just what he did last weekend.

4. DENNY HAMLIN – 1 WIN – 201 PTS
Points? Who needs stinkin’ points after Daytona’s victory?

5. BRAD KESELOWSKI – 1 WIN – 201 PTS
Some folks he’ll always remember never had money or fame. They were simply great people.

6. CARL EDWARDS – 241 PTS
Screw lugnuts. He is switching to velcro.

7. JOEY LOGANO – 234 PTS
Just imagine how he would be doing with just a bit of consistency.

8. DALE EARNHARDT JR. – 211 PTS
After driver introductions joins some guy named Peyton in the back of a truck circling the track.

9. KURT BUSCH – 208 PTS
Ex-girlfriend was not a trained assassin. She says so. Taking no chances, Kurt should just agree.

10. AUSTIN DILLON – 198 PTS
Texas is the Lone Star State, but Austin was anything but alone when things went sideways.

11. MARTIN TRUEX JR. – 187 PTS
Best little race car in Texas…on fresh rubber.

12. MATT KENSETH – 171 PTS
For all his hard luck, still treading water and comes to Sunday’s race as the defending champion.

13. JAMIE MCMURRAY – 171 PTS
Not exactly thrilling the crowds, but if one can quietly hold down a Chase place, that works.

14. CHASE ELLIOTT – 168 PTS
The kid is hungry, as even fifth is not good enough.

15. A.J. ALLMENDINGER – 166 PTS
You can not go wrong with BUSH Beans. Actually, I think I have.

16. KASEY KAHNE – 161 PTS
Sponsor is a big supporter of garage bands. These days I prefer a nice quiet book. I’m getting old.

17. RICKY STENHOUSE, JR. – 153 PTS
After six attempts, has the best average finish (11.2) among active Bristol drivers. Hey, look it up.

18. KYLE LARSON – 152 PTS
Failing inspection last week costs Kyle and Brad practice time at Bristol. Bad boys, bad boys…

19. RYAN NEWMAN – 150 PTS
Since 2002, has just a pair of Top Fives at Bristol, but the last time was just one year ago.

20. RYAN BLANEY – 144 PTS
Last weekend he kept picking up bad vibrations. That gave him bad excitations.

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Ron Thornton
A former radio and television broadcaster, newspaper columnist, Little League baseball coach, Ron Thornton has been following NASCAR on this site for 13 seasons. The fact he is referred to as a Senior Writer has little to do with his ability or length of service, but more about just how old he has become. It is anticipated that before the end of this campaign, he will be promoted to Ancient Scribe.

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