Talladega delivers divine destruction

Kevin Harvick, driver of the #29 Budweiser Chevrolet, spins out after an incident with the field in the final lap of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Good Sam Roadside Assistance 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on October 7, 2012 in Talladega, Alabama. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Any visit to Talladega Superspeedway makes drivers and teams nervous. After all the 2.66 mile speedway is notorious for the legendary ‘big one’ the multi-car crash that makes predicting a finishing order nearly impossible.  The ‘big one’ is the main reason the second Talladega, the fourth race in NASCAR’s Chase, is known as the wild card race.

Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at Talladega was easily one of the best of the season with three and four wide racing, no dominant driver and a nervous air nearly the entire race. Several cars came close to crashing but were able to hold on forcing fans and the rest of the field to catch their collective breath. The ‘big one’ did happen but not until the final turn on the final lap. A melee ignited by Tony Stewart that swept up 24 cars, the largest crash in Chase history, and left the frontstretch littered with debris. Matt Kenseth was able to rocket ahead of the carnage for his second win of the season.

With the smoke settled and the finishing order was finally somewhat sorted out, the 2012 Chase field really didn’t change all that much; Brad Keselowski still leads, with Jimmie Johnson and Denny Hamlin close behind. MORE>>>

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