NASCAR

Will Joe Gibbs Racing come out swinging at Richmond?

Geoffrey Miller's Five Things to Watch at Richmond
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<p> Five storylines to follow as the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit heads to Richmond International Raceway for the Toyota Owners 400.</p>

1. Beaten down Joe Gibbs Racing should come out swinging
Matt Kenseth suffered perhaps the most crushing penalty NASCAR has ever assessed that isn't a driver suspension. Kyle Busch has a strong memory of team mistakes killing his chance to qualify for last year's Chase for the Sprint Cup. And Denny Hamlin, the best Richmond International Raceway driver by advanced statistical measure in the last five-plus seasons, won't even get to suit up for Saturday night's race.

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Fantasy NASCAR Picks for the Toyota Owners 400 in Richmond

Geoffrey Miller predicts the best fantasy drivers in Richmond so you don't have to.
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<p> Geoffrey Miller ranks each driver on the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit for this weekend's Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Raceway.</p>

NASCAR Numbers Game: 6 Amazing Stats for Richmond International Raceway

David Smith crunches the numbers for the Toyota Owners 400
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<p> David Smith crunches the numbers and finds the key NASCAR stats for the Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Raceway.</p>

Every year the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series hits a stretch of the season in which it is premature to judge the championship hunt, but cogent enough to pinpoint problems with underperforming drivers and teams. It’s an odd stretch, for sure. Through eight races we have seen some unexpected strong performances from non-household names, while also getting much of the same from the usual title-contending suspects, some of which you will read about below. It’s been a crazy, competitive year that has provided plenty of statistical fodder.

Is Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Racing's Missing Piece?

Through the Gears: Four things we learned at Kansas Speedway.
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<p> Reaction from NASCAR's weekend at Kansas Speedway.</p>

Two years ago, J.D. Gibbs came within a front bumper of stealing Carl Edwards away from Roush Fenway Racing. Then Ford’s hot young star, Edwards would have bumped Joey Logano out of the No. 20 ride to the tune of a reported $10 million.

Turns out, that could be the best money Gibbs ever saved.

NASCAR Teams Head to Kansas, Honor Boston

Geoffrey Miller's Five Things to Watch at Kansas Speedway
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<p> Five storylines to follow as the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit heads to Kansas Speedway for the STP 400.</p>

1. NASCAR honors victims, heroes of Boston Marathon explosions
Just as it did after the large-scale attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, NASCAR will serve in the role of honoring those affected by Monday's horrific events at the Boston Marathon. Beyond the expected emotional pageantry of Sunday's pre-race ceremonies at Kansas Speedway, two Sprint Cup teams with unique ties to Boston and its annual road race have even made plans to recognize and support the victims and heroes in various ways.

NASCAR Numbers Game: 7 Amazing Stats for Kansas Speedway

David Smith crunches the numbers for the STP 400
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<p> David Smith crunches the numbers and finds the key NASCAR stats for the STP 400 at Kansas Speedway.</p>

Kansas Speedway was the site for . On a newly paved surface with an unfamiliar tire compound, the race offered drama (Jimmie Johnson crashing), comedy (Danica Patrick attempting to wreck Landon Cassill, but wrecking herself instead) and action (Matt Kenseth stormed to the front late in the race – there is more on this below – to scoop up the surprise win).

Penske Racing Awaits Penalties from NASCAR

Through the Gears: Four things we learned at Texas Motor Speedway.
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<p> Reaction from NASCAR's weekend at Texas Motor Speedway.</p>

It’s hard to believe that last year Kyle Busch went a whole season and won just once in NASCAR’s top three series: Sprint Cup, Nationwide, and Camping World Trucks. Why? Two months into 2013, he’s on pace to win 28 times across the board, lead over 2,000 laps in Cup and shatter any Nationwide Series record he hasn’t already.

NASCAR's Top 12 Most Dominant Streaks

NASCAR's greatest runs of success at it's most daunting racetracks
<p> From Richard Petty to Dale Earnhardt to Jimmie Johnson, Athlon Sports contributor Vito Pugliese ranks NASCAR's greatest runs of success at it's most daunting racetracks.</p>

Jimmie Johnson’s eighth career win at Martinsville last Sunday highlighted his dominance at that particular track. Johnson has won seven of the last 14 visits to the track and in 23 starts has an average finish of 5.3. While he still has a way to go to match Richard Petty’s mark of 15 wins at the paperclip, it did bring to mind some past performances at other tracks by NASCAR stars who were able to hit on some unmistakable magic. Let's take a look at the top 12 most dominant streaks in NASCAR:

NRA sponsorship of NASCAR race in Texas creating buzz

Geoffrey Miller's Five Things to Watch at Texas Motor Speedway
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<p> Five storylines to follow as the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit heads to Texas Motor Speedway for the NRA 500.</p>

1. NASCAR finding Texas race sponsor to be questionable fit
When Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage announced the naming rights to Saturday night's race, eyebrows were raised in circles far wider than those just in the NASCAR garage. That'll happen when you allow a political group on one side of this country's hottest political debate to stake it's name to an event broadcast on national TV.

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