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NASCAR

It is Time for Jimmie Johnson to Take Over the NASCAR Chase

Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Last week Jimmie Johnson was getting it done at New Hampshire Motor Speedway but it wasn’t enough as Matt Kenseth won the Second NASCAR Chase race; Kenseth’s second Chase race win. It will be impossible for Jimmie Johnson to win the Championship when Matt Kenseth wins all the races. No problem, Jimmie Johnson and NASCAR returns to Dover International Speedway for the AAA 400.

Dover International Speedway is a high banked, one mile short track. There is 24 degrees of banking in the corners which is more than Las Vegas where the Truck Series will be Saturday. There is also 9 degrees of banking in the straight-aways. This track is fast because of the banking and drivers can get into serious trouble if they lose it in the corners. It is also common for drivers to lose it on the front stretch. When that happens there can be big pile ups similar to the Superspeedways.

To say Jimmie Johnson is good at Dover is an understatement. He has a driver rating of a commanding 199.6. Remember driver ratings at or near 120 are about as good as a driver can realistically achieve. His next closest competition is his competition, Matt Kenseth at 107.3.

When one look at average finishes, Johnson leaves his competition in the dust. He has an average finish of 9.0. Only Carl Edwards has a better finish of a statistically equal 8.6. Those numbers make Kenseth’s average finish of 13.6, which is eighth best of the drivers in the Chase, look bad.

I’m really looking forward to Dover. It is one of my favorite tracks. We were close there last time, lead a bunch of laps and were in position there toward the end for a win.”  Johnson added, “Unfortunately, we got penalized on that final restart and weren’t able to pull it off. I think we’ve clarified things a little bit with the new restart rule and are headed in the right direction. This Lowe’s team has had a consistent start to the Chase (for the NASCAR Sprint Cup) and I expect more of the same this weekend in Dover.

Jimmie Johnson is currently third in the standings eighteen points behind Matt Kenseth. He is hoping to continue his great Chase run but this time beat Matt Kenseth to gain some points.

If you cannot get to Dover International Speedway the race will be broadcast on ESPN starting at 1 PM ET Sunday, September 29th, 2013. The race is 400 laps or miles.

Brian Berg Jr. is a NASCAR writer for RantSports.com.

Follow him on Twitter @brian_jr1 during the race and throughout the week for more NASCAR news and commentary, or on Facebook, Pinterest, and Google.

Top 13 Driver Rating at Dover
Jimmie Johnson…………….. 119.6
Matt Kenseth…………………. 107.3
Kurt Busch……………………. 105.6
Carl Edwards…………………. 102.9
Greg Biffle…………………….. 101.4
Mark Martin…………………….. 97.3
Kurt Busch……………………… 93.6
Jeff Gordon…………………….. 92.7
Clint Bowyer……………………. 91.1
Martin Truex Jr……………….. 89.9
Ryan Newman…………………. 88.4
Jeff Burton……………………… 86.4
Brad Keselowski………………. 85.3
Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2013 races (17 total) among active drivers at Dover Motor Speedway.