With only 12 spots available in the Chase for the Sprint Cup each season, there are bound to be a handful of superstars left out of the championship hunt every year. Especially when one team elevates itself—as Michael Waltrip Racing has done with Martin Truex Jr. and Clint Bowyer this year. Chase spots get harder and harder to come by each season.
This year, the list of names fighting for a wild-card spot reads like a who's who of the sport. Carl Edwards, Kyle Busch, Kasey Kahne and even Jeff Gordon find themselves on the outside of the top 10 in points looking in, battling for race wins in the final two weeks. Two should be enough to secure a wild-card spot, but only Kahne is so lucky.
Writing a piece like that requires me to pick two drivers to make it as Wild Cards. I'm saying Kahne maintains one spot, while a bit of luck these next two weeks propels Gordon into the second wild-card berth. That would leave the following drivers searching for the answers to what went wrong: