Race to the Chase is heating up.
For Jamie McMurray and his team they are peaking at just the right time in their charge for the Chase. McMurray is in 13th just 100 points behind Clint Bowyer in 12th with two races two go to the Chase cut off.
McMurray insists that at least for him he hasn’t been paying attention to the numbers. He leaves the worrying up to his crew chief, Kevin Manion.
"[Manion] certainly is worried about it," McMurray said. "I remember the stress that goes along with that, and I'm really fortunate this year that we were able to win those two big races, because if we don't make the Chase, it's not going to be devastating."
McMurray laid back attitude toward the Chase comes after winning the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 400. He knows 42 other drivers would love to have one just one of those races this season let alone both. The question is will his strategy of “not paying attention” work? It won’t be easy but McMurray could make the Chase he would have to finish in top five in both races and effectively lead the most laps.
The flip side is Bowyer would have to fail to finish in both races, which is very unlikely. The last time he finished 30th or worse in back to back races was last season at Darlington and Charlotte.
Effectively the final Chase spot is Bowyer’s to lose; but we shouldn’t count out McMurray till the checkered flag at Richmond.
Could it be Busch vs. Busch at Atlanta Motor Speedway?
The field this weekend could get a bushwhacking as both Kurt and Kyle Busch look to make it two in a row this weekend.
Ku. Busch won the spring race at AMS and will be looking for the season sweep on Sunday night.
Busch has three wins at AMS including two of the last three races. His average finish is 18.7 but he has seven top 10’s and three top fives. A good solid finish will clinch Busch spot in the Chase but a win will give him 10 more bonus points.
His clinching scenarios look like this: 9th or better with no laps led, 10th or better with at least one lap led or 11th or better, most laps led.
His younger brother Ky. Busch is looking to make it five wins in a row in NASCAR top touring series and two wins in a row in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series.
Busch has an average finish of 18.3 at AMS and one win. Busch has only two top 10’s and two top five finishes.
His clinching scenarios are a bit more favorable as he sits third in the points in comparison with his brother who is 10th. Busch really needs to just start the race on Sunday or finish better than 40th if he doesn’t lead one lap.
At the track…
If you are heading to AMS this weekend and looking for some good hotel deals check out the Best Western in College Park they have rates as low as $69. Also, Red Roof Inn in Keenesaw has a rate for $57.
To find more hotels that are working with AMS check out www.atlantamotorspeedway.com/fans/hotels and be sure to mention you are attending events at AMS this weekend.
According to NASCAR.com and the track here is what you can bring:
• Coolers made of any material are allowed, as long as they are 14 inches or smaller on all sides. No glass is allowed.
• Bags: Backpacks, scanner bags, camera bags, etc.
• Allow extra times if you are carrying a cooler or bag, as all bags are subject to search.
• Tailgating items: A grill, food, chairs and games.
The Emory Healthcare 500 from Atlanta Motor Speedway at 7:30 p.m. ET Sunday on ESPN.