There is hot, and there is hot. Hot could be winning the opening race of the Chase, securing a berth in the next round, and allowing two races to tinker and prepare for Charlotte. However, after a spin on just the second lap in Chicago, the result was as much a credit to the performance of crew chief Dave Rogers as it was to the driver, Denny Hamlin.
Chicago. The opening race of the Chase. Sixteen drivers would continue the quest, one very likely locking his way into the next round, some setting themselves up with fine starts while others...not so much.
While not surprising that conversation still swirled around A.J. Allmendinger and his failed drug test, here is what else was surprising and not surprising from the 20th running of the Lenox Industrial Tools 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.