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Hot 20 – After the Week We’ve Had, We Could Use a Little Good News From Michigan

The news of late has been enough to make a clown cry. In fact, we just lost one of our most treasured entertainers, by his own hand. We have the tragedy involving Kevin Ward Jr. and Tony Stewart still on our minds. We have Martin Truex Jr.’s girlfriend facing health challenges.

This has not been the best of weeks. You turn on your televison or check out Youtube and it does not get much better. Police lobbing tear gas at news crews in Missouri. One nation protecting its people with missiles while the other side protects its missiles with people. A tyrant threatening a neighboring country because he can. People streaming into another like it is “no pay and stay day” at Disneyland because some think that allowing them to do so is the right thing to do.

I even sought escape in reality shows, with no luck. “America” just tossed out the best dancer on “So You Think You Can Dance” and I cannot begin to describe the talent tossed aside for crap on “America’s Got Talent.” It is enough to make Lewis Black go nuclear. Good Lord, we sure could use some positive diversions from all this damn reality.

Just maybe Michigan will provide it for us. Might four time winner Greg Biffle lay claim to another and a Chase berth? Jack Roush’s organization could use a little good news today, an organization that will see a major sponsor and its best driver both fly away next season. Maybe Matt Kenseth could lock his way in with a third Michigan victory, even though a berth by points alone seems likely. Then again, one of those Hendrick boys might claim this thing again. Even Kasey Kahne has won there before. At least it would make some folks happier.

Good news is that there will not be a single Cup driver in the Nationwide race. The bad news is that only 37 cars are entered to compete in the Ohio event. Only 28 trucks will run in the Camping World race at Michigan on Saturday. Kyle Busch will be competing, for you can never have enough races involving Kyle Busch.

Maybe he just loves to race. Like Tony. Tony has won at Michigan before, but he will not be racing there on Sunday. With that, we’ve come full circle.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. has returned to where he was, a decade ago. In these standings, where we bump up the victor’s bonus from 3 to 25 points, he leads. In the official standings, he leads. Twice before at Michigan, at the end, he has led. Maybe a win by Junior, or Jeff, or Brad, or Jimmie, Joey, Matt, Carl or Kevin might help put a big ole smile back on this face. I sure hope so. It has been one hell of a week.

1 –   Dale Earnhardt, Jr. – 839 Points – 3 Wins
2 –   Jeff Gordon – 812 – 2
3 –   Brad Keselowski – 762 – 3
4 –   Jimmie Johnson – 716 – 3
5 –   Joey Logano – 715 – 2
6 –   Matt Kenseth – 703 – 0
7 –   Carl Edwards – 702 – 2
8 –   Kevin Harvick – 689 – 2
9 –   Ryan Newman – 645 – 0
10 –   Kyle Busch – 637 – 1
11 –   Kyle Larson – 635 – 0
12 –   Clint Bowyer – 634 – 0
13 –   Greg Biffle – 626 – 0
14 –   Kasey Kahne – 622 – 0
15 –   Austin Dillon – 616 – 0
16 –   Marcos Ambrose – 584 – 0
17 –   Denny Hamlin – 574 – 1
18 –   Paul Menard – 574 – 0
19 –   Brian Vickers – 573 – 0
20 –   Jamie McMurray – 566 – 0


The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of

Ron Thornton
Ron Thornton
A former radio and television broadcaster, newspaper columnist, Little League baseball coach, Ron Thornton has been following NASCAR on this site since 2004. While his focus may have changed over recent years, he continues to make periodic appearances only when he has something to say. That makes him a rather unique journalist.


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