By admin | November 1, 2011
By Richard Allen
After Sundayâ€™s race in Martinsville a former NASCAR Sprint Cup champion and one perennial contender were essentially eliminated from contention for the title. And these two virtual eliminations impacted the same family as brothers Kurt and Kyle Busch are now so far back that there is little chance of making up the necessary ground.
At the end of the Tums Fast Relief 500, Kurt Busch fell to 8th place in the standings. He is 58 points behind leader Carl Edwards and with the maximum points payout for one race being 48, Busch is over one full race behind with only three to go.
A day filled with the elder Buschâ€™s typical tirades about an ill handling racecar combined with a couple of spins led to a 14th place finish, which was not enough to keep pace with those who were already ahead of him in the standings. That made the task of winning this yearâ€™s Chase virtually impossible for the first ever playoff winner in NASCAR history.
Kyle Busch seemed poised to make a move forward in the standings as the younger of the two brothers led more laps than any other driver during the day and was running near the front as the race ran toward its conclusion. However, a late race collision with fellow contender Matt Kenseth left Busch buried deep in the pack.
The Toyota driver ended up 27th, which has left him in 7th place overall in the standings. He is 57 points behind Edwards, and like his brother, in need of some sort of unlikely miracle to get back into contention.
These brothers entered the race needing to make a move up the standings but instead took steps backwards. Not only would one of the two have to win at least two of the three remaining races to get back to the front, but they would need catastrophe to strike everyone in front of them. In other words, they are realistically both now building toward next year.
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