Halfway to the Chase, the top 12 may be locked
We're halfway to the Chase for the Championship. There should be a nickname, a logo, a T-shirt, something. Until then, we have a prospective playoff field with 13 races left until that 12-driver playoff unit is finalized at Richmond on Sept. 12.
That might have been a lot more before the intergalactic economy tanked, before top-level Sprint Cup teams either stocked themselves with the best of the available commodities or were forced to hunker down and wait for the financial storm to pass.
But here's an interesting bit of debris for the whirlwind: when asked by the
"Tony Stewart, nice guy; got to hang out with him in his motor home for awhile at the Phoenix race," she said. "I'm a fool to not be inquisitive. 'What's it like? What's the schedule like? What are the races like? Is the car tough to drive?' The same general questions I'd ask, to be honest, whether I had a decision to make in six, eight months or not. And then Dale (Earnhardt Jr.), I'd talk to him, but I'd ask Tony."
An engine lease program and snuggly relationship with Hendrick Motorsports engines, combined with obvious driver acumen and Stewart's ability to lure quality personnel has made his team an instant factor. And unlike many other organizations, he has room to grow.
If Patrick were able to bring a sponsor with her, she could perhaps not only solidify her ride but Newman's, as well.