NASCAR Chase Patrol: "Midterm Grades" for Top 12 Sprint Cup Contenders

Rob TiongsonSenior Analyst IOctober 18, 2009

NASCAR Chase Patrol

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    RICHMOND, VA - SEPTEMBER 12:  (Back row from L-R) Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Office Depot Chevrolet, Carl Edwards, driver of the #99 Aflac Ford, Greg Biffle, driver of the #16 3M Ford, Mark Martin, driver of the #5 Kellogg's Chevrolet, Jimmie Johnson

No. 12: Brian Vickers

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    CONCORD, NC - OCTOBER 15:  Brian Vickers, driver of the #83 Red Bull Toyota, stands in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series NASCAR Banking 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway on October 15, 2009 in Concord, North Carolina.  (Photo by Jason

No. 11: Denny Hamlin

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    CONCORD, NC - OCTOBER 16:  Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Toyota, sits in his car during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series NASCAR Banking 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway on October 16, 2009 in Concord, North Carolina.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/

No. 10: Carl Edwards

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    CONCORD, NC - OCTOBER 15:  Carl Edwards, driver of the #99 Aflac Ford, stands on pit road during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series NASCAR Banking 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway on October 15, 2009 in Concord, North Carolina.  (Photo by Jason Smith

No. 9: Kasey Kahne

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    CONCORD, NC - OCTOBER 15:  Kasey Kahne, driver of the #9 Budweiser Dodge, stands on pit road during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series NASCAR Banking 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway on October 15, 2009 in Concord, North Carolina.  (Photo by John Har

No. 8: Ryan Newman

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    KANSAS CITY, KS - OCTOBER 02:  Ryan Newman, driver of the #39 US Army Chevrolet, looks on during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Price Chopper 400 presented by Kraft Foods at the Kansas Speedway on October 2, 2009 in Kansas City, Kansas.  (Pho

No. 7: Greg Biffle

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    CONCORD, NC - OCTOBER 15:  Greg Biffle, driver of the #16 3M Ford, stands in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series NASCAR Banking 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway on October 15, 2009 in Concord, North Carolina.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/G

No. 6: Juan Pablo Montoya

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    KANSAS CITY, KS - OCTOBER 02: Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet stands in the garage while adjustments are made to his car during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Price Chopper 400 presented by Kraft Foods at the Kansas Speed

No. 5: Kurt Busch

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    DAVIDSON, NC - OCTOBER 14:  NASCAR driver Kurt Busch (C) is locked up for charity at the NASCAR Second Annual Jail & Bail held at Brickhouse Tavern  October 14, 2009 in Davidson, North Carolina.  Funds raised during the event will go to The NASCAR Foundat

No. 4: Tony Stewart

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    FONTANA, CA - OCTOBER 09:  Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Office Depot/Old Spice Chevrolet, climbs into his car during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pepsi 500 at Auto Club Speedway on October 9, 2009 in Fontana, California.  (Photo by Chris G

No. 3: Jeff Gordon

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    CONCORD, NC - OCTOBER 15:  Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Transformers Chevrolet, stands on pit road during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series NASCAR Banking 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway on October 15, 2009 in Concord, North Carolina.  (Photo by

No. 2: Mark Martin

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    CONCORD, NC - OCTOBER 15:  Mark Martin, driver of the #5 Pop-Tarts Chevrolet, stands in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series NASCAR Banking 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway on October 15, 2009 in Concord, North Carolina.  (Photo by Sam

No. 1: Jimmie Johnson

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    LOUDON, NH - SEPTEMBER 18: Jimmie Johnson driver of the #48 Lowe's Chevrolet during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sylvania 300 at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway on September 18, 2009 in Loudon, New Hampshire  (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Im