By admin | November 10, 2011
By Richard Allen
During the past off season NASCAR changed the points system that had been used in the Sprint Cup Series for almost 40 years. With smaller numbers of points being awarded for each position the natural result of the move would be to create what gave the appearance of a closer battle for the title than in previous years as the season drew to a close.
Well, that is happening. Carl Edwards leads Tony Stewart by just three points with two races remaining on the schedule. Of course, those who have followed NASCAR for more than just a brief moment will understand that there have been close title battles before. But since most of the sanctioning body’s rule changes are geared for fans the sport doesn’t yet even have, it appears to be a tight Chase for the Championship to those who might just catch the highlights on SportsCenter.
That said, it appears as though the fabricated battle will have to take a back seat in this weekend’s race in Phoenix. Being that the new fans NASCAR has worked so hard to cultivate over the past few years are more consumed with individual personalities than the sport itself, the real interest surrounding this race will be on Kyle Busch and his plight.
NASCAR benched the often controversial younger Busch for last weekend’s Nationwide and Sprint Cup races after he intentionally wrecked Ron Hornaday in a Camping World Truck Series event.
This week, rumors have swirled all around the driver, his Joe Gibbs Racing team and primary sponsor M&Ms. On Thursday, persistent stories indicated that Busch may be parked by his team/sponsor for the rest of the season. Or, other reports had it that Busch would indeed drive in the season’s remaining races but with long time JGR supporter Interstate Batteries on the car rather than the candy maker.
It appears as though the latter of those two possibilities is coming to fruition.
As the next to last event approaches, NASCAR has gotten its wish. “The closest points battle in history” is taking shape over these final races. However, it seems as though Kyle Busch and his drama are going to upstage the intended proceedings.
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