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NASCAR Top-10 Power Rankings: Richmond

Note: The quotes in this article are fictional.

1. Ryan Blaney: Blaney started on the pole at Richmond and finished seventh.

“That’s two straight poles for me,” Blaney said, “and my third this season. I’m collecting Busch Light Pole Awards faster than I can get rid of them in yard sales.”

2. Chase Elliott: Elliott started strong at Richmond but experienced handling issues in the final stage that kept him out of the top 10. He finished 14th and is tied with Ryan Blaney atop the points standings.

“The No. 9 Chevy was just good,” Elliott said, “but not great. What my car needed was a shot of adrenaline, much like ‘A Shoc’ performance energy drink would provide for a person, or Brad Keselowski’s mechanic would provide for his engine.”

3. Martin Truex Jr.: Truex led 80 laps and won Stage 2 at Richmond on his way to a fourth-place finish, posting his first top-five of the season.

“Just when you think you’ve heard it all in NASCAR,” Truex said, “the term ‘pit stop choreography’ became a thing at Richmond. Let’s be honest, footwork is an important part of all aspects of racing. For example, I’d like to take my right foot and work it towards the behind of my crew chief James Small, who screwed up our pit strategy at Richmond.”

4. William Byron: Byron led 122 laps at Richmond but couldn’t hold off the fresh tires of Denny Hamlin’s No. 11 Toyota down the stretch. Byron held on for third and is fourth in the points standings.

“If you’re on old tires at Richmond,” Byron said, “you’re a ‘sitting duck.’ If you can’t handle your alcohol and pass out in the bleachers without sunblock, you’re also a sitting duck. And you’ll likely leave with a sunburn and one less eyebrow.

“I had the Liberty University paint scheme on my No. 24 Chevy. When that’s on your car and you’re leading, everybody’s watching, including Jerry Falwell, Jr.”

5. Ross Chastain: Chastain, last week’s winner at COTA, recorded a 19th at Richmond, one lap down to the leaders.

“It just wasn’t my day,” Chastain said. “I’m frustrated. But my day wasn’t altogether ‘fruitless,’ because, just as was the case a week ago at COTA, I smashed a watermelon. But this time, it was out of frustration.”

6. Alex Bowman: Bowman came home eighth in the Toyota Owners 400 for his fourth top 10 of the year.

“Congratulations to Denny Hamlin for winning the race,” Bowman said. “He had a slow start to the season, but Denny kept working hard knowing wins would come his way. You could say he ‘got what was coming to him,’ which is something Denny is dying to say about me.”

7. Joey Logano: Logano finished 17th at Richmond, one lap down.

“We’re off to Martinsville for a Saturday night race and the renowned half-mile track,” Logano said. “I always look forward to racing there, especially when I’m not looking behind me for Matt Kenseth.”

8. Denny Hamlin: Hamlin passed William Byron with five laps remaining and held off Kevin Harvick to win the Toyota Owners 400 Richmond. It was Hamlin’s first win of the year as well as his first top 10 of the year.

“You could say I got the ‘monkey’ off my back,” Hamlin said. “Unfortunately, that monkey was on the back of another larger monkey, which is still on my back. And has paid rent through mid-November.”

9. Chase Briscoe: Briscoe finished 11th at Richmond.

“As expected,” Briscoe said, “tire management was a big factor in the race. It’s one thing to ‘nurse’ your tires; it’s another thing to ‘doctor’ your tires, which is something you’d expect Brad Keselowski’s team to do.”

10. Kevin Harvick: Harvick surged late and chased eventual race winner Denny Hamlin to the line at Richmond. Harvick settled for the runner-up spot, his best finish of the year.

“I was hoping to get close enough to Hamlin to ‘take a swipe’ at him,” Harvick said. “Does that mean I was going to wreck him? Maybe, but really what I hoped to gain by saying ‘take a swipe’ was a sweet sponsorship deal with a credit card company.”

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


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