NASCAR Panel: Off week

Published 4:47 pm Friday, July 22, 2011

Do you like what the Chase wild card brings to the table?

Ken Mays: I like it. It brings in a team that has been consistent with their program and gives them a chance to revive whats left of the year.

Jason Cannon: No. If you’re going to take the best 12 drivers into the playoffs, then you need to take the Top 12 drivers in the points system.

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Mark Trest: I do like it. In the past, the 11th and 12th qualifiers havent made much noise once in the Chase anyway, so the new formula adding the two teams by virtue of victories versus just points, gives those teams who may not have been as consistent, but did win some races, a chance to still win it all.

What would validate Kyle Busch’s career more: hitting his personal goal of 200 total NASCAR wins or getting a Cup title?

Ken Mays: I really think he is more about winning races than winning the points. Just look at his driving compared to Jimmy Johnson that hasn’t done so well at winning and is second in the standings. Kyle takes chances that most drivers wouldn’t.

Jason Cannon: If he can pile up a bunch of wins in Cup, then it won’t matter. I’m not all that impressed with his 100 wins. Only 22 of those came from Cup races. It’s a lot like Albert Puljos playing in the minor leagues just to hit a bunch of home runs. He’s a great driver but look at the level of competition in truck and Nationwide series.

Mark Trest: A driver like Busch wants it all. The title and the wins, and he wont quit pursuing that dream until he achieves it. I dont blame him. To me, if he keeps winning, the titles will eventually come as well.

Will both of the Stewart-Haas cars make the Chase?

Ken Mays: I don’t think so. I believe that they are going in the right direction but a little laste in the season.

Jason Cannon: Unless Stewart wins one of the next few races I think he’ll miss the cut.

Mark Trest: They both appear to be regaining the early season momentum they carried, so versus a comment I made a couple weeks back, I think Stewart, as well as Newman, will be players in the Chase. They have picked the best time to get hot again.

With the Chase cutoff date fast approaching, who is in more trouble: Dale Junior or Clint Bowyer?

Ken Mays: I think Dale is the most trouble. It just seems to me that he struggles more and more every year. I have nothing but respect for him but in reality he is just not cutting the mustard.

Jason Cannon: Dale Junior. He’s either hot or cold. Right now he’s ice cold and sinking in the points like a stone.

Mark Trest: Once again, Dale Jr. appears to be in a downward spiral. I’m not sure what the deal is now, but his luck sure has turned sour.

What is the key to the 48 Team’s success even when they’re not winning races?

Ken Mays: I am going to repeat what I have said over the past couple of years. Jimmie Johnson’s team goal is to be the Cup winner. His team prepares all year long for the chase. He races for the Cup Win and it must be working.

Jason Cannon: There’s a chemistry on that team like nothing I’ve ever seen before. When one part of it is down, it seems like another part comes up to take its place.

Mark Trest: C-O-N-S-I-S-T-E-N-C-Y. Prime example. Kyle Busch won last week at Kentucky, and backed it up with a 36th place finish at New Hampshire. The other points leaders have experienced the same fates. But, Johnsons bad days arent nearly as devastating; therefore, his consistency in higher finishes keeps him in a higher points position. Need further proof? See who the champion is the past five seasons.