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Mon, 18 Jul 2011 12:15 PM EDT

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
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Sunday, July 17 – 1:00 p.m. EDT
New Hampshire Motor Speedway – Loudon, NH

The 19th race of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series takes place this Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, NH. It has hosted NASCAR racing annually since the early 1990s, as well as an IndyCar weekend and the oldest motorcycle race in North America, the Loudon Classic. Nicknamed “The Magic Mile,” the speedway is often converted into a 1.6-mile (2.6 km) road course, which includes much of the oval. Odds.

The Chase for the Cup Standings

The top 12 (# – see below) drivers that are eligible to win the NASCAR Sprint series “Chase for the Cup” are as follows (with points behind first place).

Top 10 Points Standings

1. Kyle Busch -
2. Carl Edwards -4
3. Kevin Harvick -10
4. Kurt Busch -18
5. Jimmie Johnson -19
6. Matt Kenseth -22
7. Jeff Gordon -71
8. Dale Earnhardt Jr. -76
9. Ryan Newman -86
10. Denny Hamlin -95
Wild Card Spots

11. Tony Stewart 527 Points
12. Clint Bowyer 514 Points

# – NOTE: Prior to 2011 the Top 12 drivers that qualified for the “Chase for the Cup” was based only on points. HOWEVER, NASCAR changed the qualifying format starting with 2011. The 11th and 12th spots, the “wild cards,” will be filled by the two drivers with the most victories ranked 11th-20th in the points standings. If there are no drivers ranked 11th through 20th with victories, the “wild-card” spots will be filled based on points. If there are multiple drivers tied in number of victories, points will be used as the tie-breaker. Scores.

Drivers to Watch

Kyle Busch (5/2) – The “Rowdy” Busch brother is the hottest thing in the Sprint Series after taking the points lead with his third win this season last week in Kentucky (he also won in the Camping World Truck Series event). This will be his 13th Sprint Series run at Loudon, a place he has done exceptionally well at, winning once and finishing in the top-11 eight total times. He has also done very well here in the Nationwide Series, winning twice and finishing in the top-5 three other times in his five career races.

Carl Edwards (3/1) – Edwards has never won in his 13 career races at Loudon, and has finished in the top-10 just twice. Overall, this is the 16th-best track as far as average finish for him, on the 23 Sprint Series tracks. However, he has only placed better than 20th in one of his 11 other races here, and has never crashed or not finished.

Joey Logano (5/1) – The Connecticut-born Logano grew up about 180 miles from Loudon, so friends and family will be out there plenty in support. Logano won this race in 2009, and has one other top-10 finish in his five races on this track.

Brad Keselowski (5/1) – This will be just his fourth race at Loudon, where his only top-10 finish came in his first race here in 2009, when he finished sixth. He won the pole here in the Sylvania 300 last September, but finished 18th.

Kevin Harvick (5/1) – Currently sitting in third place in the standings, Harvick is tied with Kyle Busch with three wins this season. He has won once and has 10 other top-10 finishes in his 20 career races at Loudon. Last season he finished fifth in both races at Loudon. Las Vegas odds.

Kasey Kahne (10/1) – He has no wins and just five top-10 finishes in his 14 career races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, but Kahne started second and was leading after 110 laps in this race last season until engine trouble knocked him out.

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