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Friday, April 4, 2008

Wide open weekend at Texas

Texas Motor Speedway is a rarity in modern-day NASCAR, in that there are no clear favorites to win at the track. In the 14 races held so far at the super-fast track, only one driver, Jeff Burton, has taken the checkered flag more than once. He won the inaugural race in 1997, and didn't get back to Victory Lane until last spring.

If history is any lesson, Roush Racing has won several races at the track, so look for his drivers Matt Kenseth, Carl Edwards and possibly Greg Biffle to be up front this Sunday. They're having strong seasons, and should continue that success at Texas. Another team to watch is Richard Childress Racing. Jeff Burton is leading the points and up front almost every week, and his teammates Kevin Harvick and Clint Bowyer and also having good seasons, and momentum can be a huge indicator of success from week to week in NASCAR.

Whatever happens, it's sure to be a wild ride.

BAM racing, which recently switched to Toyota, withdrew their No. 49 car from the entry list this week. The team, already mired deep in the point standings, announced they will miss two races while they make the adjustments involved in the switch. "Switching manufacturers was a taller order than we initially realized," team co-owner Tony Morgenthau said.
While the switch may be beneficial to this struggling team in the long run, the rest of their 2008 season is going to be very difficult. The team will be well outside the top 35 in points and not have a guaranteed spot, so they will have to qualify for every race. This team has struggled since forming in 2001, and has never achieved any real success in the sport. I won't declare the team dead, but barring major improvements in equipment, the team will likely remain a backmarker for the year, and possibly into the future.


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