New Year… New Nose… New Questions… New Champion?
Everyone is already anticipating the start of the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup season. And why not?
It’s a brand new year, with a brand new race car nose (no braces). The question on everyone’s mind is… will the Jimmie Johnson/Chad Knaus combination continue to dominate the championship scene?
What about Denny Hamlin? Will a strong 2010 season lead into a stronger 2011 and a title?
Will Kyle Busch be able to keep his racing focus as sharp now that he’s a married man? Will he finally be able to gather enough consistency throughout the season to take his first Cup championship?
Can RCR’s outspoken driver Kevin Harvick put together a championship effort for 2011, after three wins in 2010?
What about the Roushkateers… Carl, Matt, Greg, and David? They were somewhat successful in 2010, and all finished in the Chase except for Ragan. Can any of Jack’s drivers mount a challenge to the Chevy dominance of the Sprint Cup?
Then there’s also Tony Stewart and Ryan Newman. After a significant freshman season for Stewart-Haas Racing in 2009, both teams had lackluster 2010 seasons. Can they put together a stellar effort for the 2011 Sprint Cup?
Jeff Gordon didn’t have the 2010 season he had hoped for, finishing 9th in the 2010 standings. He’s not really had the success in recent years that he had in the early part of his career. With a new crew chief for 2011, will this be his year to regain the Sprint Cup championship?
Richard Childress drivers Clint Bowyer and Jeff Burton had mixed success in 2010. Bowyer won two races and ran fairly well. Will one of these two drivers have a Sprint Cup winning season?
A. J. Allmendinger had a stellar season with Petty even during the turmoil of not knowing if the team would survive the 2010 season. Will he be able to continue this success into 2011?
OK, now it’s your turn. Who do you think will take the 2011 Sprint Cup championship? Why do you think that? Leave your thoughts in the comment section.