Note: The quotes in this article are fictional.
1. Joey Logano: Logano finished 18th at Homestead.
“I’m headed to Martinsville as the only driver to have already clinched a spot in the championship round,” Logano said. “So, when I check the gauges in my car and they all say ‘no pressure,’ it won’t be a problem.”
2. Ross Chastain: Chastain came home second in the Dixie Vodka 400 at Homestead.
“I’m second in the playoff standings,” Chastain said, “14 points to the good. It would take a virtual disaster for me not to make the playoffs, so I feel good about my prospects because I often am that disaster.”
3. Denny Hamlin: Hamlin finished seventh at Homestead and will vie for one of the three remaining championship round playoff spots at Martinsville.
“We’ll be in my home state of Virginia,” Hamlin said. “So, I’m hoping to make my place of birth my place of berth.”
4. Chase Elliott: Elliott finished 14th at Homestead and sits third in the playoff standings.
“The deeper we get into the playoffs,” Elliott said, “the greater the pressure to win. So, at Martinsville, the tension will be different than one of those cheap hot dogs, because you can cut the tension with a knife.”
5. William Byron: Byron started on the pole at Homestead and finished 12th in the Dixie Vodka 400.
“I’m five points above the elimination line,” Byron said. “If NASCAR had not rescinded those penalty points for wrecking Denny Hamlin, I wouldn’t be in this position. So, I’m not sure if I should thank NASCAR for their consistency, or their lack of it.”
6. Ryan Blaney: Blaney finished 17th at Homestead.
“I spun leaving the pits on the access road,” Blaney said. “It was totally my fault. I accidentally downshifted when I meant to upshift. It couldn’t have come at a worse time. So, very bad timing. Now, very good ‘timing’ would be me holding a grandfather clock after winning at Martinsville next week.”
7. Christopher Bell: Bell finished 11th at Homestead.
“I’ll need to win at Martinsville to advance to the championship round,” Bell said. “I pulled a rabbit out of the hat at Charlotte’s ROVAL to advance to the Round Of 8. I’ll need to pull another rabbit out of another place if I’m going to advance again.”
8. Kevin Harvick: Harvick finished eighth at Homestead, posting his 16th top 10 of the season.
“If you think non-playoff drivers have nothing to gain by winning a race,” Harvick said, “then you’re partly right because we’ll ‘stop at nothing’ to win.”
9. Kyle Larson: Larson dominated at Homestead, sweeping the stages and pulling away for an easy win, his third of the season.
“I felt confident with Valvoline on my car,” Larson said. “Valvoline makes a great lubricant, and trust me, I’d much rather be ‘greased’ by Valvoline than ‘greased’ by Bubba Wallace.”
10. Martin Truex Jr.: Truex led 28 laps and posted a sixth in the Dixie Vodka 400.
“Kyle Larson hit my rear bumper on pit road,” Truex said. “I knew it was an accident, so I kept my head. I remained calm, cool, and collected. That’s unlike Bubba Wallace, who wasn’t calm, wasn’t cool, and whose fine was collected by NASCAR.”