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Sunday, June 17, 2012

Rain throws another monkeywrench in Cup teams' plans at Michigan

BROOKLYN, Mich. -- This weekend keeps getting a monkeywrench thrown at it at Michigan International Speedway.

First, the repave meant superfast speeds and an extra test day.

Then, the left side tires got changed at the last minute after there were issues with blistering on Thursday and Friday, so teams are now going to race on a tire they only got 75 minutes of practice on.

Now, it is raining, so we're going to have a very green track once things get started this afternoon. This could make things very interesting.

What does this all equate to? A lot of unknowns.

One team that has benefited from some of the changes is the Penske squad, as Brad Keselowski and A.J. Allmendinger were not very strong on the old tire but now will be possible contenders as the new tire has improve their performance.

I'll add another dark horse pick for today: Mark Martin. He has won a ton of races here at Michigan, and he knows his way around this track better than anyone here. He won the first Cup race I attended at MIS 15 years ago, and it would be very cool to see him win again.

On the flip side, I'm sorry to say that Dale Earnhardt Jr. fans will not likely see their driver win today. He hasn't taken well to the new tire and isn't nearly as strong this week as he has been most weeks recently.

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