As of January 6th we are only 30 days away until the 2010 Budweiser Shootout. Can't wait!
I could go on a long rambling session, but I will get right to the point of this blog. Now, here is my predictions on who I think will make the Chase in 2010.
In no particular order:
Dale Earnhardt Jr
I'm sure you have noticed that Mark Martin, Juan Montoya, Ryan Newman, Kasey Kahne, and Brian Vickers are missing from this list. I'll explain why I don't see these 5 drivers making the Chase.
Montoya and Vickers - Self explanatory. I think these 2 had fluke seasons and will be mid-pack runners in 2010.
Mark Martin - Some may be shocked I am predicting Mark Martin to miss the Chase. My theory is this: HMS is putting a lot time and effort on the 88 car and getting Dale Earnhardt Jr back on track. I think this will effect the 5 car the most since both cars come out of the same shop. If Mark does make the Chase I don't think he will win a race. I just don't see the 5 team duplicating what they did in 2009.
Kasey Kahne - Pretty much self explanatory as well. RPM is a mess!
Ryan Newman - Stewart Haas overall will not be as strong as they were in 2009 simply because I don't see Hendrick putting in too much time into their operation since he's focused on the 88 car. Newman will feel the effects more than Stewart and thus I don't see him making the Chase.
Now I'll explain why I see Burton, Bowyer, Dale Jr, Kyle Busch, and Kenseth making it.
Burton and Bowyer - These 2 showed signs of strength towards the latter portion of 2009. Harvick did as well but I'm still not sure about his consistency. I'm leaning towards Clint over Harvick but I would not be surprised if the 29 gets in the Chase as well. Bottom line is RCR will be a much better team in 2010.
Dale Earnhardt Jr - I'm surprised a lot of fans are letting 2009 influence their opinions on Dale Jr. With Rick Hendrick putting so much time and effort on the 88 team I have no doubt in my mind Jr will be back in the Chase in 2010.
Kyle Busch - Rogers and Kyle showed a lot of strength closing out the year. I expect Kyle will have no problems making the Chase.
Matt Kenseth - Roush as a whole will be back on track in 2010. I think Carl Edwards will be the main beneficiary of Roush's success but I think Kenseth will do well.
Anyways that's it for now. I will be back in a few days with my predictions on race winners and some other stuff. Feel free to post your own predictions in the comments section if you like.
God Bless and have a great new year.
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