Note: The quotes in this article are fictional.
1. Kyle Larson: Larson finished third at Indy’s road course after contact on the last restart shuffled him out of contention for the win.
“If not for a late debris caution,” Larson said, “I would have won the race going away. That would have been my sixth win of the year. Even so, with five wins, I’m still like the Charlie Sheen of NASCAR, because there’s winning and speed.”
2. Chase Elliott: Elliott led 14 laps and finished fourth at Indy’s road course.
“Before the track went haywire,” Elliott said, “it looked like it would be a battle between me and Kyle Larson. Kyle still beat me, which he’s done often. He really has my number. Every week, it seems he’s passing me for the lead. He keeps reminding me that the most applicable word that rhymes with ‘teammate’ is ‘checkmate.'”
3. Denny Hamlin: Hamlin led with a lap remaining at Indy’s road course, but was bumped out of the lead and spun out by Chase Briscoe. Hamlin finished 23rd and confronted Briscoe after the race.
“I wasn’t looking for a fight,” Hamlin said, just an explanation. And Chase’s explanation left me looking for a fight. Briscoe can say he didn’t know a penalty was coming; I don’t buy it. Briscoe’s concept of the rules is just as faulty as his concept of honesty.
“I’m still winless. And I’ll be at a disadvantage when the playoffs start. But I could very well make history by becoming the first Cup champion to not win a single race. It would be quite an accomplishment. Trust me, it will be an ‘L’ of an accomplishment.”
4. Martin Truex Jr.: Truex salvaged a 15th-place finish despite an early tire rub and a spin suffered when Truex ran over debris knocked loose from another car that ran over Indy’s faulty curbing.
“I don’t know who was responsible for the curb issues at Indianapolis,” Truex said. “But they should be ‘curb-stomped.’
5. Alex Bowman: Bowman finished 17th in the Verizon 200.
“That was a wild race,” Bowman said. “Maybe the most exciting part for the fans trackside was seeing the track demolish the front ends of nine cars on Lap 77 when the curbing came up. So, that race had ‘Curb A-peel.'”
6. Kevin Harvick: Harvick finished 14th in the Verizon 200.
“What a stunning win for AJ Allmendinger,” Harvick said. “I may not be Allmendinger, but I feel like we could have something in common—we both could be playoff ineligible.”
7. Kyle Busch: Busch finished 20th in a wild, crash-filled race on Indianapolis’ road course.
“Drivers had mixed opinions about Indy’s road course,” Busch said. “I think those mixed opinions just became unanimous. Ask any driver now, and to a man, I think they would all choose 160 painstakingly monotonous laps in the Brickyard 400 over 95 incredibly exciting and eventful laps in the Verizon 200.”
8. William Byron: Byron was snagged in a big crash caused by faulty curbing. He finished 33rd.
“Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb waved the green flag to start the race,” Byron said. “Maybe he should have waved the red flag instead, and passed his own infrastructure bill to address outdated curbing at IMS.”
9. Joey Logano: Logano’s day ended on Lap 77 when the curbing came undone and caused nine cars to wreck. Logano was one of the unlucky and finished 34th.
“The curb just demolished the front end of my car,” Logano said. “In addition to several parts of my car, all hell broke loose as well. I really thought I could have won the race. But what’s the opposite of ‘kissing the bricks?’ ‘Kissing the curb.'”
10. AJ Allmendinger: Allmendinger survived the attrition of a crash-filled Verizon 200 at the Brickyard and took the lead when Chase Briscoe took out Denny Hamlin.
“I’d like to thank my team and my sponsors,” Allmendinger said. “We’ve had our difficulties this season, but much like the curbing at Indy—you just can’t keep us down.”