Power Rankings: New No. 1 emerges after Texas
There’s another change atop the NBC Sports Power Rankings. Alex Bowman has taken over the No. 1 spot in the Power Rankings after his scoring his third top-five finish Wednesday at Texas in the last five races.
With different wins in each of the last seven Cup races, there hasn’t been a dominant driver emerge. Bowman earns the top spot this week with the the top-five finishes in the last few weeks. Close behind is Martin Truex Jr. in the rankings. Truex has scored three consecutive top 10s heading into Sunday’s playoff race at Martinsville Speedway (2 p.m. ET on NBC).
Here is this week’s NBC Sports Power Rankings
1. Alex Bowman (Last week No. 2): Although he enters Martinsville outside a transfer spot to the championship race, it’s not from a lack of trying. He has three top-five finishes in the last five races. He’s scored 20 stage points in this round. Lack of playoff points in the regular season has hurt him in the Round of 8.
2. Martin Truex Jr. (Last week No. 5): Runner-up finish at Texas is his third consecutive top-10 finish. Scored 18 stage points at Texas despite starting last because of a penalty in inspection before the race that also cost Truex and his team 20 points.
3. Joey Logano (Last week No. 4): Tenth-place finish at Texas is his third top 10 in a row. He remains the only driver who has advanced to the championship round with his Kansas win.
4. Kevin Harvick (Last week No. 1): Lost control of his car in the mist at Texas and hit the wall before the race was stopped on Sunday. Went on to finish 16th with the damaged car. It is the third time in the last four races he has placed outside the top 10.
5. Chase Elliott (Last week No. 3): Saw his streak of three consecutive top 10s end with a 20th-place finish at Texas. Had a tire issue just after a fuel-only pit stop and that cost him a lap. Could not get back on the lead lap the rest of the race.
6. Ryan Blaney (Last week No. 10): His fourth-place finish at Texas is his third top 10 in a row.
7. Kyle Busch (Last week unranked): Ended his 33-race winless streak. Also extended his streak of seasons with at least one Cup win to 16. He’s only two years from tying Richard Petty for the all-time record in that category.
8. Denny Hamlin (Last week No. 8): Car suffered damage early in the resumption of the Texas race on Wednesday. He was able to finish ninth for his third top 10 in the last five races.
9. Brad Keselowski (Last week No. unranked): Sixth-place finish at Texas gives him back-to-back top 10s.
10. Christopher Bell (Last week unranked): Placed third at Texas to score back-to-back top 10s fof the first time this season.
Dropped out: Erik Jones (sixth last week), William Byron (seventh), Chase Briscoe (ninth)