By Jared Turner
Two of the hardest impacted victims of Talladega’s multiple “Big Ones” on Sunday were playoff drivers Jamie McMurray and Ricky Stenhouse Jr., who were involved in separate accidents that almost certainly will prove equally costly to each driver’s championship hopes. McMurray heads to Kansas ranked last among the 12 remaining playoff drivers, and in all probability will need to win to advance to the Round of 8. Stenhouse, meanwhile, is 11th and seven points ahead of McMurray but likewise will probably need a win to move on. Considering that Talladega represented a much better opportunity than Kansas for both of those drivers to go to Victory Lane, McMurray and Stenhouse will likely need to wait at least another season to capture their first championship, respectively, in NASCAR’s premier series.