Damnation! I really, really, really wanted Chase to win that race! That's not to say, I don't think Kyle Busch did exactly what he needed to do. After all, he has quite a bit of skin in the game too, like more points to take into the rest of the championship races. A real racer wouldn't have done anything else.

And it's not like I don't think Chase won't collect plenty of trophies in his career. He is sort of like Kyle Larson in his sophomore year. Remember how people said Kyle wasn't living up to his potential because he couldn't close the deal? Well, this year, he hit his stride and headed into an upward trajectory. That's what I think will happen with Chase. But him winning would have been the sentimental story and I'm so looking forward to that day when he finally does. I think a lot of people are. Even drivers.

So four are out and aren't they the four we probably would have predicted? Kurt Busch, Austin Dillon, Ryan Newman and Kasey Kahne. None of the losers set the world on fire this season but they got a win or were consistent enough to get there on points. I still think the top three are Truex, Busch and Larson. I'm leaving the fourth spot open, hoping for Jimmie to catch fire although it's getting pretty late to fan those flames.

And we have Talladega coming up before long. That could totally muddle the point standings.

After the race, Jeff Gordon got a little snarky with Ryan Newman, saying, "thanks for the help". He meant for racing Chase so hard, it gave Kyle B the chance to catch him. Nope, sorry, Jeff, but you're wrong. Ryan doesn't owe Chase anything. He had his own agenda, trying to stay alive in the Chase and he was right to race as hard as he could. Ryan called Jeff on it and he was right to do that too.

Two cars failed post-race inspection, Clint Bowyer and Erik Jones. Fortunately, only one lug nut was missing from each car and that's a lesser penalty so they don't lose their crew chiefs. And in another ultra-strict move, Jimmie got called to the hauler, missing part of practice, for speeding on pit road. Seems rather extreme to me but who am I?

Much sympathy to the family of Robert Yates who has been a part of NASCAR forever. He will definitely be missed.

And while I'm giving out sympathy, condolences to the family and fans of Tom Petty. I always thought his Chasing Down A Dream would make a good NASCAR theme song.

And last, but, certainly not least, our hearts go out to those killed in Las Vegas and those still suffering in Puerto Rico.

In the latest Outlander program, the song that epitomized the sadness of what was going on was Bob Dylan's A Hard Rain's A'Gonna Fall." That song is also played at the beginning and end of the Vietnam series. It seems to reflect so much of what is happening in our world today.

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right on the mark, vicki,,thx



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