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NASCAR

NASCAR Nationwide Series Is At its Most Competitive

Randy Sartin-US PRESSWIRE

The NASCAR Nationwide Series is getting closer to the end of the season but it currently has its most competitive field in 2012.

With about eight races to go in the 2012 NASCAR season, the race for the Nationwide championship is currently separated by just one point between its top two competitors. Elliott Sadler and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. have made it to the top of the series.

In the last few races Stenhouse has moved up within the point standings to close the gap between him and Sadler. Stenhouse closed the gap by moving from within the top five in the point standings to moving right behind the leader in second in a matter of races.

As the reigning Nationwide Series champion, Stenhouse has posted four wins, with his recent win at Atlanta. Stenhouse’s wins in 2012 surpass his total from his championship year. In 2012 he has also posted 15 top-five and 19 top ten finishes.

The current points leader Sadler, set the mark high in the series when he posted his four wins in the early part of the season. Sadler has also posted 11 top-five and 18 top-ten finishes this season. Sadler’s last win occurred at Iowa.

When it comes to starting up front Stenhouse has captured more poles than Sadler. In 2012 Stenhouse captured four poles meanwhile Sadler captured three. Stenhouse has also averaged a 6.0 starting spot against Sadler’s 7.0 average. When it comes down to a better finish Sadler averages a 7.4 finish over Stenhouse, 7.6.

Heading into the race weekend at Chicagoland Speedway, Sadler goes in as the July race winner.

Stenhouse and Sadler have been close in the 2012 season but they can’t forget about the competition. Austin Dillon is 30 points behind Sadler and 29 from Stenhouse. Dillon once held second place in the points. Right behind Dillon is Sam Hornish Jr., 50 points behind the leader, and in eight races things can change.

Follow Christy Valdez on Twitter @Knowursports and on Facebook at On The Sidelines With Christy

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