The Final Word – Phoenix kind of reminded me of Las Vegas…and Atlanta. How about you?

by Ron Thornton On Mon, Mar. 12, 2018

AVONDALE, AZ - MARCH 11: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John's Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series TicketGuardian 500 at ISM Raceway on March 11, 2018 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

Round round get around
I get around
Get around round round I get around

It sure sounds cool when the Beach Boys sing it. It sure was kind of boring when we watched the drivers do the same at Phoenix.

Get around round round I get around
Ahh ooo ooo
Get around round round I get around
Ahh ooo ooo

The song ends like that every time. Same for NASCAR lately. Kevin Harvick won his third straight, maybe it was even unencumbered but we will have to wait on that. At least he was not the only car featured. Kyle Busch was strong all day and finished second. Chase Elliott was not, yet arrived later on to matter when it mattered to finish third. Not yet a win, but the result sends him back in the right direction. Denny Hamlin was a factor and, to a much lesser degree, so was pole sitter Martin Truex, Jr. as they completed our Top Five.

Excitement? No, not much. However, Chris Buescher was having a bad day, lost a right front, and forced a caution late in the second segment that at least shook up the running order some. Hey, you got to take it where you can get it. 37 cars were entered, and it is becoming more and more obvious that, strictly for entertainment value, we could even reduce that by a half dozen and not miss a beat. The only surprise in the Top 30 was Ross Chastain with a season best 27th for Jay Robinson’s team. On the outside we had Michael McDowell and Paul Menard, but I do not think anyone was surprised they were joined by D.J. Kennington, Timmy Hill, Gray Gaulding, Jeffrey Earnhardt, and Corey LaJoie.

Well, what have we got next? California. Beautiful Fontana. The track were excitement goes to die. Usually. Still, arriving on the west coast should come as good news for six-time winner Jimmie Johnson. Do you know who else has won there? Kyle Busch has three trophies, and probably thinks that it would be nice to claim a win after two straight runner-up finishes. Kasey Kahne, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Larson, and Kurt Busch also have a victory there. As does Kevin Harvick. At least he has not won there since 2011. Over the past ten at Fontana he has just one win…was 2nd two out of the last three…and seven Top Tens.

What goes around comes around. Tell me, could we see a four-peat this Sunday?

Maybe he is getting bugged driving up and down the same old strip
Wants to find a new place where the kids are hip

Then again, maybe not. He seems to like winning. A lot.

** The opinions expressed on this site are not necessarily those of the publisher. All comments other than website related problems need to be directed to the author. (c) **

Leave a comment

Free Shipping on Orders Over $25 at

Copyright © All rights reserved. - Partner of USA TODAY Sports Digital Properties.