No room for error as NASCAR heads to Texas

NASCAR heads back to Texas Motor Speedway this weekend. (Getty Images)
NASCAR heads back to Texas Motor Speedway this weekend. (Getty Images)

As the NASCAR Sprint Cup series head Texas Motor Speedway for Sunday’s AAA Texas 500, Jimmie Johnson finds himself in a familiar spot; on top of the points. Behind him there are 11 other drivers who will no doubt not wish him much good luck this weekend.

With only three races left in the season, the opportunity to recover from a bad race is a tall order, so any mistakes will be magnified. Realistically the Chase field has been narrowed to the top four or five, but should any of the top three have a disaster this weekend the Chase could be up for grabs. Here’s a rundown of the top 12 in points heading to Texas along with some non-Chasers who could spoil the party.

Jimmie Johnson has only one win here but has four top ten’s including two second place finishes in the last five races. One of those runner-up finishes came in the spring. But in 2009 Johnson was involved in a crash on lap 3 that sent him to the garage and a 38th place finish. If Johnson and crew chief Chad Knaus are on their game this weekend however, and there’s no reason they won’t be, and if he can avoid trouble the 48 Chevy will be hard to beat Sunday.

“I expect us to be really strong this weekend at Texas,” Johnson said.  “I love that race track.  We were very good there in the spring.  Our 1.5-mile stuff has been really fast.  I’m thinking we are going to be really strong.” MORE>>>

Greg Engle
About Greg Engle 7421 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 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.