Thursday, June 14, 2012

5 Questions Before Michigan

The 2011 Pure Michigan 400 was the last race on the old surface. Kyle Busch was
victorious, but will the new surface effect the racing and handling?
Photo credit: Holly Machuga/Skirts and Scuffs
After spending last weekend at Pocono Raceway, these are the questions that are on my mind as we look towards Michigan this weekend.

How will the new surface affect the racing at Michigan?

Michigan International Speedway (otherwise known as MIS) is known for long green flag runs and somewhat uneventful racing just as Pocono Raceway is. After the Pocono 400 this past weekend, all of that changed. The race had something new around every turn and it kept the fans on their toes. Hopefully it will be the same for Michigan.
Will Michigan see a repeat winner? 

Greg Biffle, Kurt Busch, Carl Edwards, Jeff Gordon, Denny Hamlin, Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, and Mark Martin all have multiple wins at Michigan. Looking to add their name to the list of multiple winners at Michigan, Kasey Kahne and Tony Stewart each have one win and already have wins this season to top it off. 

Will Dale Earnhardt Jr. finally get a win after leading 36 laps at Pocono Raceway?

Dale Earnhardt Jr. had to settle with a disappointing 8th place finish at Pocono after again being in contention throughout the race. Heading into Michigan he may have the momentum going to earn his first victory in 143 races. His last win came at that very track on Father's Day in June 2008, making it one close to his heart and that of his fans because of the loss of Dale Earnhardt Sr. in 2001.

In addition to that special win, Jr. has  four top-fives, eight top-tens, and two pole awards at Michigan. With the trend of repeat winners at MIS, seeing the No. 88 team in victory lane is quite a possibility this weekend.

Can Kurt Busch bounce back after his suspension?

After being on probation and having an altercation with a media member at Dover two weeks ago, Kurt Busch was suspended from racing at Pocono this past weekend. Phoenix Racing team owner James Finch made the decision to put Busch back in the car after a “come to Jesus” talk on Tuesday. (For more on this story, read LJ Cloud's story.) At Michigan, Busch has two wins, three top-fives, eight top-tens, and two poles. His record indicates the possibility of claiming his first win for the season.

Can Greg Biffle get his points lead back?

After a rough race for the No. 16 team at Pocono, Greg Biffle lost his points lead to Roush Fenway Racing teammate Matt Kenseth, as Dale Earnhardt Jr. crept ahead, bouncing Biffle back to third. Biffle has two wins, seven top-fives, ten top-tens, and one pole in eighteen races at Michigan. Only 16 points out of the lead, a win would help Biffle get back up front and secure the points lead. 


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