It’s Time For All Of Hendrick Motorsports To Rally Behind Junior
With five races to go before the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoff field is set, Hendrick Motorsports drivers Jimmie Johnson and Kasey Kahne have already secured playoff berths. A third Hendrick driver, Chase Elliott, is in position to make the playoffs based on points despite having not gone to Victory Lane in 2017. The only Hendrick driver not in position to reach the playoffs? Dale Earnhardt Jr., who has struggled mightily in this his final Cup season. Earnhardt, of course, is NASCAR’s 14-time most popular driver, so it would be a crying shame for him to miss the playoffs and not be afforded one more opportunity to compete for the Cup championship that has thus far eluded him. This is why Hendrick Motorsports needs to pull out all the stops over the next five races to get Junior to Victory Lane – and into the playoffs by default. If this means reallocating resources from the other Hendrick drivers, so be it. The organization’s No. 1 priority, beginning this weekend at Watkins Glen, has to be giving Earnhardt the absolute fastest car and pit crew that Hendrick has to offer. NASCAR desperately needs Earnhardt in this year’s playoffs, and it’s up to Hendrick Motorsports to leave no stone unturned in the effort to make it happen.
The Great Pocono Weather Was A Welcome Sight
If there’s any track on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule that’s notorious for being impacted by rain, it’s Pocono Raceway. But, thankfully, Sunday’s race at the Tricky Triangle was a sun-splashed affair that was unimpeded by wet weather. The dearth of precipitation this time around was an especially good thing since the green flag once again didn’t wave until after 3 p.m. ET, leaving NASCAR very little room to get the full race distance completed if there had been any kind of rain delay.