Sprint Cup Chase 2014: NASCAR Standings and Schedule After New Hampshire

R. Cory SmithSenior Writer IJuly 13, 2014

LOUDON, NH - JULY 13:  Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Redds Ford, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Camping World RV Sales 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on July 13, 2014 in Loudon, New Hampshire.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images

The first race at New Hampshire during the 2014 Sprint Cup season might provide some foreshadowing for what's to come near the end of the year. After 19 races this season, Brad Keselowski now adds his name to the list of drivers with three wins, along with Jimmie Johnson.

Along with the victory, the Penske driver also took over the lead on the Chase Grid with his third trip to Victory Lane and a sweep at New Hampshire. With another race scheduled during the Chase for the Sprint Cup, Keselowski's early success bodes well for NASCAR's postseason.

Just a week after Aric Almirola shocked the NASCAR world by earning his first victory, the Camping World RV Sales 301 had a slightly more predictable winner. Keselowski captured the checkered flag at New Hampshire and moved his name up on the Chase Grid.

The win for Keselowski and a top-10 finish for Dale Earnhardt Jr. all but secure a place in the Chase for both drivers, as NASCAR points out:

His victory comes just two races after his second win at Kentucky, where he famously injured himself while celebrating.

Following his huge victory to claim the top spot in the Chase standings, his spotter poked fun at the situation, per Nate Ryan of USA Today:

With the Camping World RV Sales 301 now officially over, here's a look at the full standings and a breakdown of the New Hampshire race.

2014 Sprint Cup Standings
Pos.DriverPoints
1Jeff Gordon670
2Dale Earnhardt Jr.658
3Brad Keselowski634
4Matt Kenseth621
5Jimmie Johnson598
6Carl Edwards574
7Ryan Newman573
8Kyle Busch567
9Joey Logano551
10Clint Bowyer548
11Paul Menard541
12Denny Hamlin530
13Kevin Harvick528
14Kyle Larson524
15Austin Dillon524
16Greg Biffle519
NASCAR.com
2014 Sprint Cup Chase Grid
Pos.DriverPointsWinsTop 5Top 10
1Brad Keselowski6343910
2Jimmie Johnson5983612
3Dale Earnhardt Jr.6582913
4Carl Edwards574248
5Joey Logano551269
6Kevin Harvick528258
7Jeff Gordon6701613
8Kyle Busch567158
9Denny Hamlin530147
10Aric Almirola473124
11Kurt Busch440144
12Matt Kenseth6210712
13Ryan Newman573027
14Clint Bowyer548028
15Paul Menard541039
16Kyle Larson524048
NASCAR.com

 

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The start of the race saw issues for a driver who was a clear contender coming into New Hampshire.

Jimmie Johnson, who has three victories in New Hampshire during his career, had tire issues that caused him to exit the race early on Sunday. Ryan passes along Johnson's thoughts on the cut tire:

With both Johnson and Keselowski claiming three checkered flags this season, both now sit atop the rankings and appear to be in championship form. Though Mr. Six-Time had a rough race at New Hampshire, he will look to rebound at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, a track where he has four victories.

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Later in the race, yet another top driver was taken down.

Joey Logano, who has two wins this season, was running well all day before he was involved in an accident with Morgan Shepherd. The Penske driver voiced his thoughts on Shepherd following the wreck, per Dustin Long of Motor Racing Network:

The 72-year-old was well behind the pace when he was collected in the wreck while Logano was competing near the top of the leaderboard. His teammate Keselowski also surpassed him in wins on the season as the teammates have a combined five checkered flags.

While both Johnson and Logano were watching from the garage, a young driver on the rise made a huge statement. Kyle Larson, who has put together an already impressive season, notched his fourth top-five result by finishing third on Sunday.

Ryan notes his thoughts on the rookie driver:

Following the Camping World 301, just a few races remain before the Chase officially begins. The remaining schedule for the Sprint Cup season can be found below.

2014 NASCAR Remaining Schedule
DateRaceWhereTime (ET)TV
July 27The John Wayne Walding 400 at The BrickyardIndianapolis Motor Speedway1 p.m.ESPN
Aug 3GoBowling.com 400Pocono Speedway1 p.m.ESPN
Aug 10Cheez-It 355 at The GlenWatkins Glen International1 p.m.ESPN
Aug 17Pure Michigan 400Michigan International Speedway1 p.m.ESPN
Aug 23Irwin Tools Night RaceBristol Motor Speedway7:30 p.m.ABC
Aug 31NASCAR Sprint Cup Series August Atlanta RaceAtlanta Motor Speedway7:30 p.m.ESPN
Sept 6Federated Auto Parts 400Richmond International Speedway7:30 p.m.ABC
Chase Races
Sept 14NASCAR Sprint Cup Series September Chicagoland RaceChicagoland Speedway2 p.m.ESPN
Sept 21Sylvania 300New Hampshire Motor Speedway2 p.m.ESPN
Sept 28AAA 400Dover International Speedway2 p.m.ESPN
Oct 5Hollywood Casino 400Kansas Speedway2 p.m.ESPN
Oct 11Bank of America 500Charlotte Motor Speedway7:30 p.m.ABC
Oct 19GEICO 500Talladega Superspeedway2 p.m.ESPN
Oct 26Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500Martinsville Speedway1:30 p.m.ESPN
Nov 2AAA Texas 500Texas Motor Speedway3 p.m.ESPN
Nov 9Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500Phoenix International Raceway3 p.m.ESPN
Nov 16Ford Ecoboost 400Homestead-Miami Speedway3 p.m.ESPN
NASCAR.com

After a one-week hiatus, the Sprint Cup circuit will now head to Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 27. The Brickyard 400 is always one of the most highly anticipated races of the season.

NASCAR has multiple notable races on the season with the Daytona 500 and Coca-Cola 600, but racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is always special for every Sprint Cup driver.

The John Wayne Walding 400 at The Brickyard will mark yet another opportunity for several drivers to secure a spot in the Chase. With names like Tony Stewart and Matt Kenseth still looking for their first victory, both have a good history at the track.

But even Stewart's two wins at Indy don't compare to the combined eight checkered flags for Jeff Gordon and Johnson. As the regular season nears an end with just seven races remaining, the pressure is on for several drivers to make the Chase this season.

 

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