Thursday, September 4, 2008

Rusty Reckons: Richmond

Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!!!! ARR-EYE-ARR. Hanna might coming, but who cares, cause so is Richmond, Rusty's favorite track to enjoy from the stands. Don't get much better than Richmond under the lights. RIR's a short track with quite a history. With the current D-Oval configuration, Richmond is a fast little 3/4 mile speedway.

There are kind of two ways to have success at Richmond. You can take the high road by getting into a good rhythm and allowing momentum and repetition to carry you and your car into victory lane. Or you can take the low road, we'll call it the Shrub route, and just drive aggressively and wreck people to win. After watching the Shrub's nasty aggressive driving style wreck my boy, June-bug, in May, Rusty prefers the rhythm method (*snicker*).

Richmond is also the last race before the chase. This is it! This is the last chance the guys just on the outside like Regan, Kahne and Vickers have to make it into NASCAR's playoff system. The first 5 guys in the standings have clinched (Busch, Edwards, Johnson, Earnhardt, & Burton). After that, it's an increasingly complicated math equation to figure out who's in and who's out. Seems like every year, the scenarios get more complicated making the racing better and better. Rusty's betting a few Budweiser's, this year won't be any different.

Now, to the fantasy line-up. Jimmie Johnson's hot. I know I sound like a broken record, but as my momma used to say, if it ain't broke, don't fix it. Folks, Jimmie & Chad ain't broke, so pick'em. Simple as that!

B List is another easy pick, at least for me. With 3 wins, 7 top 5's, and an average finish of just 11.5 in the capital of the Confederacy, Junior's made Richmond his best track. He's already clinched (meaning points mean little to nothing). With only 1 win this year, he'd love to get another to help add to his bonus points when they reset for New Hampshire and the start of the Chase. I think he'll get aggressive and be in contention for the victory at the end of the night.

On the C side, I like Vickers. At 15 in the points, barring an act of God to prevent Regan or Kahne from starting, he's not going to be able to qualify for the Chase . . . which means, he ain't got nothing to lose. He's not great in Richmond, having finished better than 24th only once, his first race in '04, but who cares. Last week, I picked his teammate on my C list, and Allmendinger had a surprising 14th place finish. Lightning strikes twice right?

So, grab you a few beers . . . put a college game on the flashback button and enjoy some good old short track racing Saturday night

A List
- J Johnson (48)
B List
- D Earnhardt Jr. (88)
C List
- B Vickers (83)

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