Thursday, November 8, 2012

5 Questions Before Phoenix


The Sprint Cup season is coming down to the wire. With one race to go until Homestead the competition is getting down right heated, yet respectful. Last week Brad Keselowski could have wrecked race winner and standings leader Jimmie Johnson, but opted to go with a second place finish instead. But given the chance again, would he make the same decision? I will be pondering that and more as I venture into this week's edition of 5 Questions.

Will Jimmie Johnson retain the lead going into Homestead?
The brainiac/skill team of Knaus and Johnson are at it again. Yes, we’ve seen this show before.Take care of the equipment, don’t make mistakes, capitalize on all the extra points options like leading the most laps, etc. Somehow it still is amazing to watch it unfold seemingly so easily, but the competition is not going to go quietly. Can Jimmie Johnson hold onto the lead another week?  

Will Kyle Busch finally get a win in a 2012 Chase race?
Kyle Busch is not racing for a championship, but don’t tell him that. Kyle has been knocking at the door with a third place finish last week and a second place finish the week before. He has momentum on his side at Phoenix with four top-fives in the past five races. Could he bring home the win this week?

Will Brad Keselowki and Paul Wolfe make another risky call or play it safe?
The late race call for two tires instead of four may have cost Keselowski the race at Texas. If he had better grip would he have gotten better restarts? It always seems like this team looks for creative ways to gain track advantage which is usually a good thing, but you don’t want to be too risky when a championship is in the balance. Will this team continue to work this strategy or play it safe?

Does Denny Hamlin have any fight left in him?
Denny Hamlin is a flat track master. The championship is out of reach, and he hasn’t cracked the top 10 since Charlotte four weeks ago, but can he be the spoiler for both Jimmie Johnson and Brad Keselowki? A bet you Coach Gibbs is sure hoping so.

Will this race showcase Hendrick Motorsports or Roush Fenway Racing drivers?
Hendrick Motorsports leads the Sprint Cup Series in wins at Phoenix with nine, followed by Roush Fenway Racing with six. Matt Kenseth has two Chase race victories so far, but there is a lot at stake for the Hendrick team.

Stay tuned for the answers to these questions. Enjoy the race!

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