NASCAR's Kansas playoff scenarios

Image by Kinrade/LAT

NASCAR's Kansas playoff scenarios

NASCAR

NASCAR's Kansas playoff scenarios

Kansas Speedway will cut the NASCAR Cup Series playoff field from 12 to eight Sunday afternoon in the Hollywood Casino 400.

While the slick 1.5-mile track is featured as elimination race for only the second season, Kansas has seen its share of excitement, from Joey Logano and Matt Kenseth tangling in 2015, to one of last year’s favorites, Kyle Larson, blowing an engine to end his title hopes.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. blew a tire while leading at Kansas in 2014, effectively ending his postseason. Kyle Busch also had a big crash at the speedway in 2013 during a period when the track haunted the Joe Gibbs Racing driver.

Only two drivers go into this weekend with assured spots in the semifinal round of the playoffs. Chase Elliott won his way into the next round with a victory at Dover, and Aric Almirola did the same by breaking a four-year winless streak last weekend at Talladega Superspeedway.

Kevin Harvick took the victory at Kansas in the spring after starting from the pole and leading 79 laps. Martin Truex Jr. is the defending race winner.

Here are the clinch scenarios for drivers not already locked into the next round.

· Kevin Harvick (+63) advances with 11 points and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner (or a win by Kyle Busch, Joey Logano, Kurt Busch, Clint Bowyer or Martin Truex Jr.), Harvick advances regardless of finish.

· Kyle Busch (+46) advances with 28 points and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner (or a win by Harvick, Logano, Kurt Busch, Bowyer or Truex), Busch advances with 10 points.

· Joey Logano (+39) advances with 35 points and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner (or a win by Harvick, Kyle Busch, Kurt Busch, Bowyer or Truex), Logano advances on points with 17 points.

· Kurt Busch (+30) advances with 44 points and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner (or a win by Harvick, Kyle Busch, Logano, Bowyer or Truex), Busch advances on points with 26 points.

· Clint Bowyer (+21) advances on points with 52 points and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner (or a win by Harvick, Kyle Busch, Logano, Kurt Busch or Truex), Bowyer advances on points with 35 points.

· Martin Truex Jr. (+18) if there is a repeat winner (or a win by Harvick, Kyle Busch, Joey Logano, Kurt Busch or Bowyer), Truex advances with 38 points. Could advance on points with a new winner and help.

· Brad Keselowski (-18) advances with a win. Could also advance on points with help.

· Ryan Blaney (-22) advances with a win. Could also advance on points with help.

· Kyle Larson (-36) advances with a win. Could also advance on points with help.

· Alex Bowman (-68) advances with a win.

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