How the field stacks up after Talladega – NBC Los Angeles

NASCAR Power Rankings: How the field stacks up after Talladega Originally appeared NBC Sports Chicago

The GEICO 500 at Talladega on Sunday provided another distinctive twist on a track known for its unforgettable moments.

Eric Jones had the checkered flag on the horizon before going up to snag Kyle Larson from the outside. The drivers touched down, which allowed third-placed Ross Chastain to slip off to claim his second win of the season. Several drivers crashed into the final road instantly, including Bubba Wallace, Kurt Busch and Cory Lagoy.

After the Talladega chaos, the Trophy Series heads to Dover Motor Speedway next week for a race at the Monster Mile. Each race continues to create uncertainty with all-new, next-generation cars, which have never raced on the steep concrete oval of Dover.

Who is the driver to beat in 10 weeks? Here are our power rankings with 16 races remaining for the regular season:

1. William Byron

Last week: 2

After winning the Atlanta (drafting track) earlier this year, Byron was expected to compete in Talladega. He did just that, winning a stage and driving 38 laps before hitting a wall on the last lap to finish 15th – 8th in a row for 20th. Byron and Chastain are the only drivers with multiple wins this season.

2. Ryan Blaney

Last week: 1

Blaney drops one point in the power ratings after finishing 11th, an uncharacteristic result on one of his best tracks. He didn’t score any interim points, but made 23 laps ahead. Still looking for his first win of the year, Blaney remains second in the points standings heading to Dover, where he finished 12th last year.

3. Chase Elliot

Last week: 4

Another week, another top 10 leaderboard. Elliott finished seventh in Talladega with 14 points. He has seven places in the top ten and nine places in the top fifteen in 10 races this year. Elliott has been a model of consistency, although he is still chasing his first win of the year. He has eight positions in the top five in 11 Dover starts, so this might be the place to do it.

4. Ross Chastain

Last week: 6

The watermelon man took advantage of the frenetic final on the spot to steal his second win in five weeks, both of which came on the last lap. He now has a top-six out of the top-five finalists in 2022, double the total he made in his entire career prior to this year. It has truly been a great season for a 29-year-old watermelon grower of eight generations.

Chastain’s victory celebration is a fitting tribute to his roots:

5. Alex Bowman

Last week: 5

I’ve been saying this for weeks: This is the best version of Bowman we’ve ever seen. After finishing ninth in Talladega, he placed #48 in the top 15 in eight consecutive races – the longest streak of his career. Bowman’s finish rate of 11.1 ranked him second among all drivers, behind only Elliott (10.5). Oh, and Bowman is the defending champion of the race at Dover.

6. Kyle Larson

Last week: 7

Don’t look now, but the reigning hero is starting to find his groove. Larson has made the top five in three of four races, including fourth at Talladega. He will leave Alabama frustrated because he didn’t win after driving 42 laps, even though he did jump to seventh in the points standings.

7. Joey Logano

Last week: 3

Lugano won the Talladega three times, crashing early after completing 89 of 188 laps. This wasn’t entirely his fault, but such was the nature of the beast in Talladega. Lugano dropped three places to sixth in the standings and is now in a 39-race streak without a win dating back to last year. He’s unsuccessful with 15 top-10 games in the 25 start of Dover’s career.

8. Kyle Bush

Last week: 8

Last week’s winner almost stole another one, as he headed out of the top ten to finish third on the last lap. Bosch is fourth in the rankings with a seven-top ten finish and an average finish of 11.2 this year. Amidst rumors Contract disputes with Joe Gibbs RacingThe two-time champion will hold a solid position in the top five in Talladega.

9. Martin Truex Jr.

Last week: the first four out

I’ve had Truex no rank for most of the season. This may be a mistake, but it has yet to “amaze” me through 10 races. It’s been consistent, sure, with five in the top 10 and 7 in the top 15. It wasn’t the dominant Truex we’re used to seeing, Truex who won 28 races from 2016 to 2021. With fifth place in Talladega, he’s eighth in the standings.

10. Austin Dillon

Last week: the first four out

If it wasn’t for the engine failure last week, Dillon could have scored three times in a row. He finished second in Talladega, and has been well into his fifth top 10 this season. Normally in the playoff bubble, Dillon will likely find himself in a similar position this year if he doesn’t win the race. It’s just three points above the current qualifying streak with 16 races remaining.

The first four out: Kevin Harvick, Chase Briscoe, Christopher Bell, Tyler Riddick

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