Post Pocono Power Ranking

Post Pocono Power Ranking for the NASCAR Cup Series as they get ready for racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday.
LONG POND, PENNSYLVANIA – JUNE 28: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Busch Head for the Mountains Ford, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR Cup Series Pocono 350 at Pocono Raceway on June 28, 2020, in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Post Pocono Power Ranking for the NASCAR Cup Series as they get ready for racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday.

Last weekend’s Pocono doubleheader was supposed to be the first of its kind. Unfortunately, due to the coronavirus pandemic, it wasn’t the first time this season that two races were run in the same week. However, with NASCAR Cup Series races run on Saturday and Sunday, it was the first time in NASCAR history that two races for points were held at the same track on consecutive days. With the races shorter than usual at 325 and 350 miles respectively, fuel strategy reigned supreme, allowing Kevin Harvick and Denny Hamlin to get another victory to add to their already impressive seasons. 

1. Kevin Harvick

LR: 1

Pocono 325 Result: 1st

Pocono 350 Result: 2nd

With two more great races at Pocono, Harvick further stretched out his lead at the top of the standings, and he now has a cushion of over 50 points. He picked up his third victory of the season in the first race of the weekend, and nearly pulled off the sweep on Sunday, but he was edged out by Denny Hamlin for the win. Harvick’s 12 top-ten finishes are the most in the sport, and he’s behind only Hamlin with his three wins and eight top-five

finishes. 

2. Denny Hamlin

LR: 2

Pocono 325 Result: 2nd

Pocono 350 Result: 1st

Picking up his fourth win of the year on Sunday, Hamlin put himself alone on top of the series’ win chart in this season. After an up-and-down start to the year, he also picked up his third and fourth consecutive top-five finishes during the doubleheader, keeping his hot streak going. Hamlin’s win, coupled with some poor races from other drivers, is what is allowing him to hop into the top-five for the first time since the second Darlington race. 

3. Brad Keselowski

LR: 4

Pocono 325 Result: 9th

Pocono 350 Result: 11th

Keselowski is somewhat quietly putting together a great first 15 races of the season. Two wins, five top-fives, ten top-tens. His consistency is also tremendous so far, as he has no finishes worse than 19th-place since the Daytona 500. Keselowski’s average finish of 9.7 is behind only, well, the two drivers ahead of him on this list. At the moment, Keselowski is putting himself firmly in the championship conversation. 

4. Chase Elliott

LR: 3

Pocono 325 Result: 25th

Pocono 350 Result: 4th

It was one good race, one bad race for Elliott at the Tricky Triangle. He has three top-five finishes in his past five races, and his place in the standings is staying constant for a couple of weeks now. Elliott’s one win is still a bit underwhelming, considering he could and likely should have at least three at this point, but he’s still in a great position to make a deep run. 

5. Martin Truex Jr. 

LR: 8

Pocono 325 Result: 6th

Pocono 350 Result: 10th

Truex had himself a solid weekend at Pocono, picking up a pair of top-ten finishes and running pretty well throughout the doubleheader. It’s still a bit shocking that Truex has finished in the top-five just twice all season, though. His team has had a bit of a down year by JGR standards, but Denny Hamlin’s four wins and Kyle Busch’s seven top-fives make his season look a bit overshadowed. 

6. Ryan Blaney 

LR: 6

Pocono 325 Result: 12th

Pocono 350 Result: 22nd

After four straight top-five finishes between Atlanta and Talladega, Pocono was a bit of a tough weekend for Blaney, as he missed out on top-tens in both contests. He was able to lead 21 laps in the second race, but fell off the lead lap and ended up finishing outside of the top-20. It has still been all or nothing for Blaney this year, with all seven of his top-ten finishes resulting in finishing fourth or better. 

7. Joey Logano

LR: 5

Pocono 325 Result: 36th

Pocono 350 Result: 24th

Logano was one of the biggest losers from the doubleheader. He entered the weekend trailing only Kevin Harvick in the series point standings, and by the end of the weekend, he fell four spots to sixth. Logano was able to win the first stage, but took damage in an accident and finished six laps down. Then, he just had an overall poor race on Sunday. It was a tough weekend, and it’s turned into a cold stretch for Logano, with four straight finishes outside the top-ten and just one top-five since his early-season win at Phoenix. 

8. Aric Almirola

LR: 12

Pocono 325 Result: 3rd

Pocono 350 Result: 5th

With four straight top-five finishes, Aric Almirola is one of NASCAR’s hottest drivers right now. He picked up a stage win and a third-place finish on Saturday and then grabbed fifth on Sunday to continue what’s been one of the best stretches of his career. Almirola also picked up three spots in the standings this weekend, moving from 12th up to ninth, and led 65 laps after leading just 25 in the first 13 races. All of a sudden, he’s looking like the 2018 version of himself again.

9. Kyle Busch

LR: 7

Pocono 325 Result: 5th

Pocono 350 Result: 38th

As the season continues to roll on, so does Kyle Busch’s inability to find victory lane. It’s a new headline for each week that Busch isn’t able to win. Now fifteen races in, the regular season is past its halfway point, and after DNFing in Sunday’s race, is outside of the top ten in the standings. Among the current top 16 drivers, Busch’s nine lead lap finishes are more than only Erik Jones.

10. Alex Bowman

LR: 8

Pocono 325 Result: 27th

Pocono 350 Result: 9th

Bowman’s ninth-place finish in Sunday’s race is his third top-ten in five races. His season is beginning to turn back in the right direction after a cold stretch following a scalding start. His lone win, at Auto Club, isn’t looking like it will be repeated. As the season continues to develop, however, Bowman can at least hold his place in the standings and hopefully put together a long run of consistency.

11. Clint Bowyer

LR: 14

Pocono 325 Result: 7th

Pocono 350 Result: 8th

With two consecutive top-ten finishes at Pocono, Bowyer was able to resurrect what had been a four-race cold stretch following his second-place result at Bristol. Despite the solid results, however, Bowyer was unable to make up the one spot necessary to put himself in the top-12, otherwise known as the first group in the random qualifying draw. Bowyer is doing a much better job this year of keeping himself out of trouble, though, finishing all races except one.

12. Kurt Busch

LR: 10

Pocono 325 Result: 18th

Pocono 350 Result: 13th

After five consecutive top-five finishes between the first Charlotte race and Martinsville, Busch has fallen on a bit of a cold spell, finishing 13th or worse in three of his last four races. He ran great after starting up front in the Sunday Pocono race but fell off as the race developed. One piece of consolation from an otherwise insignificant weekend is that Busch hopped his brother Kyle in the standings. A little piece of bragging rights. 

13. William Byron

LR: 15

Pocono 325 Result: 14th

Pocono 350 Result: 7th

Byron had himself a solid weekend at Pocono, and due to the poor performance of other fringe playoff drivers, gave himself a nice little extra cushion in the process. He currently sits 15th, 45 points to the good, and in a much better situation than he was coming into the weekend. Byron is still without a top-five on the season, though, and his 17.1 average finish is a bit concerning. Byron isn’t a rookie anymore.

14. Jimmie Johnson

LR: 13

Pocono 325 Result: 21st

Pocono 350 Result: 16th

With finishes of 21st and 16th this weekend, Johnson gave up some ground ahead of Clint Bowyer and Matt DiBenedetto, the three drivers currently jostling for the all-important 12th spot. Until qualifying returns, one of Johnson’s main focuses is holding on to that spot, but his biggest focus is picking up a win in his final season. Indianapolis could have been one of his best chances, but now out because of being diagnosed with COVID 19, that win will have to wait.

15. Matt DiBenedetto

LR: 17

Pocono 325 Finish: 13th

Pocono 350 Finish: 6th

DiBenedetto grabbed his fourth top-ten finish of the season with a solid effort in the second race of the weekend and had a pretty good doubleheader overall. He gave himself a little extra insurance in terms of the playoff bubble, now 57 points to the good. His numbers may not be flashy at this point, but DiBenedetto has finished all fifteen races. He’s run the 8th-most laps of anyone, and that consistency is what is keeping him inside the top-16. 

16. Tyler Reddick

LR: 11

Pocono 325 Finish: 30th

Pocono 350 Finish: 35th

Pocono doubleheader weekend went about as poorly as possible for Tyler Reddick. Reddick came into the weekend inside the playoff cut line and came out of it 26 points out. Not ideal, especially for a guy who truly is an underdog, and came into the season as a serious sleeper as a playoff candidate. It’s not anywhere close to impossible to make up 26 points in 11 races, but he certainly made it a lot more difficult for himself. 

17. Erik Jones

LR: 20

Pocono 325 Finish: 38th

Pocono 350 Finish: 3rd

It was difficult to place Jones after a weekend of finishing third to last, and then third. Jones is just barely on the right side of the cut line, due to a wreck that was essentially out of his control and his strong performance on Sunday. Four of Jones’ last six races are finishes of 20th or worse, but the other two are top-five finishes. Inconsistent, yet oddly, it hasn’t hurt him much yet. 

18. John Hunter Nemechek 

LR: 16

Pocono 325 Result: 24th

Pocono 350 Result: 19th

Nemechek’s season continues to be a pleasant surprise for Front Row Motorsports and NASCAR as a whole. He hasn’t finished worse than 25th since the second Darlington race and has finished in the top-20 eight times already this season. His performance at Pocono wasn’t great by any means, but he continues to complete every race. Nemechek has run 99.7% of all possible laps this year, one of the best percentages in the series. 

19. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

LR: 18

Pocono 325 Result: 17th

Pocono 350 Result: 15th

Stenhouse grabbed himself a couple more solid top-20 finishes at Pocono, and his performance in a JTG Daugherty car, especially compared to teammate Ryan Preece, has been impressive, with Stenhouse sitting 19th in the standings. His statistics are odd. He has more top-fives than Martin Truex, Alex Bowman, Clint Bowyer, and Jimmie Johnson, but his six lead lap finishes are less than Michael McDowell, Ryan Newman (in 12 races), and Cole Custer, who has just one top-ten finish. 

20. Austin Dillon

LR: 21

Pocono 325 Result: 19th

Pocono 350 Result: 14th

While he didn’t finish inside the top-ten in either race, Pocono will likely be considered a success for Dillon. He made pretty good progress towards the playoff cut line and moved up a spot from 18th to 17th. Dillon is just 14 points behind 16th place Erik Jones, and the battle for the last couple of spots is shaping up to be an interesting one over the next eleven races. 

BEST OF THE REST

21. Christopher Bell (LR: 24)

22. Bubba Wallace (LR: 19)

23. Chris Buescher (LR: 22)

24. Michael McDowell (LR: 25)

25. Ryan Newman (LR: 23)

26. Matt Kenseth (LR: 29)

27. Cole Custer (LR: 27)

28. Ryan Preece (LR: 26)

29. Corey LaJoie (LR: 28)

30. Ty Dillon (LR: 30)

Come on...we know you have something to say.....

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.