Today's Edition Local Missouri National World Opinion Obits Sports GoMidMo Events Classifieds Newsletters Contests Special Sections Jobs
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
story.lead_photo.caption Chase Elliott leads Joey Logano during last Sunday afternoon's NASCAR Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan. Photo by Associated Press / News Tribune.

Sunday's Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway left me wondering what more NASCAR needs to do to make the majority of the fan base happy.

The fact is that was one of the best races there's been at Kansas Speedway.

The beginning of each green-flag run was chaotic. The leader couldn't escape from the field for a 10-second lead and had to keep an eye on the rearview mirror, and there was constant jockeying for position.

Then toward the end of runs, there was enough fall-off that allowed drivers to make passes against those who didn't have the best handling car after a certain number of laps.

At the end, Kevin Harvick wasn't able to complete a pass on Joey Logano in the final 40-plus laps despite being able to get within a car length numerous times.

It frustrated some while it entertained others.

The advantage of track position is so great at some tracks it's impossible at times to even move up from about 10th place to the top five during a green-flag run, even if that driver had shown the ability to lead earlier in the race.

Clean air is king and it's difficult to pass sometimes, and it makes certain races boring to watch. That was not the case Sunday.

While it seemed like getting off pit road ahead of Harvick essentially won the race for Logano because he had the benefit of clean air, Logano simply out-raced Harvick during that final run to the checkered flag.

Logano's car was handling great and he ran clean laps while Harvick wasn't able to string together enough perfect laps to make the pass.

Other drivers had no problems taking the lead throughout the race.

And even though there wasn't any side-by-side racing or lead changes between Logano and Harvick, it was still an entertaining battle.

For several laps, NBC showed the in-car view of the No. 4 car as Harvick tried to inch closer to the No. 22.

It allowed viewers to hear when Harvick was in and out of the throttle and get a sense of how the car was handling through each corner.

Harvick was fast on the straightaways, but wasn't crisp enough in the turns to get alongside Logano and lost.

That doesn't make it a bad race.

III

The Riley Racing Challenge added a two-time winner this week. Sara Smith of Jefferson City posted the highest local score for the second time in four weeks with 874 points. It was also the highest local total since the Sept. 12 Richmond race. There weren't a bunch of surprises to lower fantasy racing scores at Kansas Speedway, except Kurt Busch having a rare engine failure. Smith earned 125 bonus points for picking an impressive five finishing positions correctly. It was close among Tom Rackers, Greg Jackson and I this week. Tom came in at 784 points, Greg scored 797 points and I surpassed 800 for the first time since Richmond with 809 points. Just two more races until championship weekend at Phoenix. Expect Brad Keselowski and Chase Elliott to accumulate as many points as possible with them on the bubble to advance. Alex Bowman, Martin Truex Jr. and Kurt Busch need to try about anything for a win.

COMMENTS - It looks like you're using Internet Explorer, which isn't compatible with our commenting system. You can join the discussion by using another browser, like Firefox or Google Chrome.
It looks like you're using Microsoft Edge. Our commenting system is more compatible with Firefox and Google Chrome.
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT