Martin Truex Jr. and William Byron input the playoffs on the most sensible of the standings, with 36 bonus issues every.
Earlier than the flag rolls out for the Southern 500 at Darlington, 4 drivers have already got causes to be. They’re Michael McDowell, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Kevin Harvick, and Bubba Wallace. All ten-week championship playoffs get started beneath the cut-line.
On Saturday, Christopher Bell claimed the pole place at Darlington in a Toyota 1-2-3 with Denny Hamlin and Tyler Reddick. It used to be a difficult day for a number of different contenders, with William Byron, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ross Chastain and Truex all qualifying deep within the box. He can be joined by way of Kyle Busch, who needed to cross backwards after making disallowed changes following touch with the wall in apply.
You’ll be able to check out the playoff standings and entire beginning lineup right here.
Now let’s get to these predictions!
advance to spherical 12
Jim Utter: Byron, Truex, Hamlin, Buscher, Busch, Larson, Keselowski, Reddick, Logano, McDowell, Harvick, Wallace
Eradicated: Bell, Chastain, Blaney, Stenhouse
Nick DeGroot: Byron, Truex, Hamlin, Buscher, Busch, Larson, Bell, Chastain, Keselowski, Logano, McDowell, Harvick
Dropped: Blainey, Reddick, Stenhouse, Wallace
Charles Bradley: Byron, Truex, Hamlin, Buscher, Busch, Larson, Bell, Chastain, Keselowski, Reddick, Logano, Blaney
Dropped: McDowell, Stenhouse, Harvick, Wallace
Pleasure Barnes: Byron, Truex, Hamlin, Buscher, Busch, Larson, Bell, Chastain, Keselowski, Reddick, Logano, Blaney
Dropped: McDowell, Stenhouse, Harvick, Wallace
advance to spherical 8
Jim Utter: Byron, Truex, Hamlin, Buescher, Busch, Larson, Reddick, Harvick
Eradicated: Keselowski, Logano, McDowell, Wallace
Nick DeGroot: Truex, Hamlin, Buscher, Larson, Keselowski, Logano, McDowell, Harvick
Eradicated: Byrne, Bush, Bell, Chastain
Charles Bradley: Byron, Truex, Hamlin, Busch, Larson, Bell, Logano, Blaney
Dropped: Busher, Chastain, Keselowski, Reddick
Pleasure Barnes: Byron, Truex, Hamlin, Buescher, Busch, Larson, Bell, Chastain
Dropped: Keselowski, Reddick, Logano, Blaney
Championship 4 Drivers
Jim Utter: Byron, Truex, Busher, harvick
Nick DeGroot: Truex, Buscher, Hamlin, Larson
Charles Bradley: Byron, Truex, Hamlin, Larson
Pleasure Barnes: Byron, Truex, Buscher, Bell
2023 NASCAR Cup Champion
Jim Utter: William byron
Nick DeGroot: Martin Truex Jr.
Charles Bradley: William Byron
Pleasure Barnes: chris busher
reasoning about predictions
Jim Utter: Whilst Byrne hasn’t all the time been essentially the most constant motive force within the 2023 season, when he and his No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports are in it, they outperform the contest. In the event that they succeed in Championship 4 early, as I believe they’re going to, they’re going to be smartly positioned to capitalize on Byrne’s breakout season with a maiden cup identify.
Nick DeGroot: The playoffs have confirmed to be unpredictable from time to time and are all the time stuffed with surprises. I consider Byrne’s early go out will probably be one in every of them, permitting Larson to hold the Hendrick Motorsports banner. I will additionally see McDowell emerging additional than different projections, particularly with how the second one spherical performs to his strengths. In 2022, Chastain reversed the status quo and entered the playoffs and received nearly the whole lot. This yr, that motive force will probably be Busher. He’s the person who can and can supply RFK Racing their highest shot on the championship in over a decade. Then there may be Hamlin, who would in the end have any other probability to say the crown, however would in the end be denied as Truex bested the sphere and received his 2d Cup identify.
And hiya, previous historical past is on his aspect. MTJ received it the entire remaining time they received the common season identify in 2017.
Charles Bradley: Debatable Opinion – None of remaining yr’s Ultimate 4 will make it to the championship race this time round! It is time for Byron to take his first identify, however he’ll be given a difficult problem by way of teammate Larson and JGR Toyota boys Truex and Hamlin.
I believe Hendrick Chavis can have the brink in Phoenix, as Byrne did in March. In spite of Logano’s heroics right here remaining yr, I will’t see any Fords becoming a member of the Championship 4 this time round.
Pleasure Barnes: There’s all the time one motive force who reaches the playoffs and has a unique run. That particular person this time is Chris Buescher, who has 3 wins within the remaining 5 races – all of that have come on other monitor kinds of brief ovals (Richmond), high-speed ovals (Michigan) and restrictor plate (Daytona). The Texan is achieving its top at the very best time with the assistance of the RFK program.
Truex and Byrne were the full magnificence of this box, in order that they would possibly not make Buescher’s, or any person else’s, existence more uncomplicated by any means. Moreover, Bell has been lurking round repeatedly and with conceivable machinations all the way through Spherical of 8, I may just see a state of affairs the place he strikes previous the likes of Hamlin and Busch and reveals himself taking a look to higher his 3rd position end. stay in place. Completed in remaining yr’s identify race.