Five former Cup champions remain in Round of 12 of 2019 playoffs

Image by Jarrett/LAT

Five former Cup champions remain in Round of 12 of 2019 playoffs

NASCAR

Five former Cup champions remain in Round of 12 of 2019 playoffs

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Of the 12 drivers who moved on into the second round of the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs, all but one has a teammate.

Kyle Larson is the last bullet in the chamber for Chip Ganassi Racing after Kurt Busch was eliminated after the Charlotte Roval. Larson begins the Round of 12 on what will be the cutline, eighth, on the playoff grid.

The rest of the playoff contenders all come from multi-car teams.

Joe Gibbs Racing has three of his four drivers still championship eligible, and Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr. and Denny Hamlin all lead the way on the playoff grid. Hendrick Motorsports also has three drivers left in Chase Elliott, Alex Bowman, and William Byron. The same for Team Penske with Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, and Ryan Blaney. Stewart-Haas Racing is down to two drivers with Kevin Harvick and Clint Bowyer.

Five of the 12 drivers are former champions – Kyle Busch, Truex, Logano, Harvick, and Keselowski. Four of them – Larson, Blaney, Byron, and Bowyer – have not won a race this year.

Reseeded playoff grid:

  1. Kyle Busch 3,046 points, 46 playoff points
  2. Martin Truex Jr. – 5, 41 playoff points
  3. Denny Hamlin – 16, 30 playoff points
  4. Joey Logano – 17, 29 playoff points
  5. Kevin Harvick (photo above) – 18, 28 playoff points
  6. Chase Elliott – 22, 24 playoff points
  7. Brad Keselowski – 22, 24 playoff points
  8. Kyle Larson – 40, 6 playoff points
  9. Alex Bowman – 41, 5 playoff points
  10. Ryan Blaney – 42, 4 playoff points
  11. William Byron – 45, 1 playoff point
  12. Clint Bowyer – 46, 0 playoff points

The races in the Round of 12 are Dover, Talladega and Kansas. In last year’s playoffs, Chase Elliott won both Dover and Kansas, while Aric Almirola, who has been eliminated, won at Talladega.

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