By the way, NASCAR still has a championship to decide

MARTINSVILLE, VA - OCTOBER 26: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Outback Steakhouse Chevrolet, drives through the pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500 at Martinsville Speedway on October 26, 2014 in Martinsville, Virginia. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
MARTINSVILLE, VA - OCTOBER 26: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Outback Steakhouse Chevrolet, drives through the pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500 at Martinsville Speedway on October 26, 2014 in Martinsville, Virginia. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
MARTINSVILLE, VA – OCTOBER 26: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Outback Steakhouse Chevrolet, drives through the pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 at Martinsville Speedway on October 26, 2014 in Martinsville, Virginia. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

MARTINSVILLE Va. – Amidst all the chaos of the win by Dale Earnhardt Jr. Sunday at Martinsville Speedway, the fact that there is a championship still to be decided seems to have gotten lost. In just two more races, four of eight drivers will be eliminated and only four will race for the title at Homestead. Sunday, Jeff Gordon (second) and Ryan Newman (third) are in pretty good shape. So seems Joey Logano (fifth) and Matt Kenseth (sixth).

In trouble, but not in dire straits, is Denny Hamlin.  Hamlin led 68 laps Sunday only to finish 8th.

“We can still do it,” Hamlin said.  “Now we know at least two guys are going to make it on points, but we still have to be solid and still have to do everything we can to show we can be part of the final four.  Today was a good race for that, just didn’t finish as well as we needed.”

Hamlin added that it helped that a driver not in the Chase won Sunday. MORE>>>

About Greg Engle 7420 Articles
Greg is a published award winning sportswriter who spent 23 years combined active and active reserve military service, much of that in and around the Special Operations community. Greg is the author of "The Nuts and Bolts of NASCAR: The Definitive Viewers' Guide to Big-Time Stock Car Auto Racing" and has been published in major publications across the country including the Los Angeles Times, the Cleveland Plain Dealer and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was also a contributor to Chicken Soup for the NASCAR Soul, published in 2010, and the Christmas edition in 2016. He wrote as the NASCAR, Formula 1, Auto Reviews and National Veterans Affairs Examiner for Examiner.com and has appeared on Fox News. He holds a BS degree in communications, a Masters degree in psychology and is currently a PhD candidate majoring in psychology. He is currently the weekend Motorsports Editor for Autoweek.