Racingone Power Rankings

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The latest edition of the RacingOne NEXTEL Cup Series Power Rankings as the series heads to Chicagoland Speedway for Sunday's USG Sheetrock 400, which features NASCAR's comprehensive statistical ratings system using a detailed formula to calculate each driver's performance.

Editor's Note: Top 10 rankings are generated by a formula combining the following categories: Wins, Finishes, Top-15 Finishes, Average Running Position While on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race. Must have raced in 75 percent of scheduled point-paying races.

1. Jeff Gordon: Gordon maintained his lead in the power rankings after capturing his 17th top 10 at Daytona International Speedway. He posted the ninth-best average driver rating en route to a fifth-place finish in the Pepsi 400. This weekend Gordon will look to continue his ride at the top of the rankings at Chicagoland Speedway where he heads into Sunday's event as the defending winner.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 10.2
Chicagoland Wins: 1

2. Jimmie Johnson: Johnson gained 0.7 of a point on Gordon in the rankings at Daytona International Speedway after spending the entire Pepsi 400 running in the top 15. He finished 10th and posted the fourth best average driver rating at 109.0. Johnson could make up more ground on Gordon at Chicagoland Speedway where he has yet to finish worse than sixth in five starts.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 3.6
Chicagoland Wins: 0

3. Tony Stewart: Stewart slipped 2.8 points in the rankings after his tangle with teammate Denny Hamlin in the Pepsi 400. As a result of his 38th-place finish, Stewart was able to break a tie with Hamlin for third and now sits with an average driver rating of 99.5 on the season. Stewart has four top fives at Chicagoland Speedway that are sandwiched in between two finishes of 33rd and 32nd. In 2004, he won at Chicago from the 10th starting position.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 12.7
Chicagoland Wins: 1

4. Denny Hamlin: Like Stewart, Hamlin took a hit in the rankings falling to fourth after finishing 43rd in the Pepsi 400. This weekend he will look to get back on track at Chicagoland Speedway where he finished 14th in his rookie season in 2006.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 14.0
Chicagoland Wins: 0

5. Kyle Busch: He might be an outcast at Hendrick Motorsports, but Busch continues to have strong runs as of late. His second-place finish in the Pepsi 400 was his fourth top-10 finish in the last five races. Busch led all drivers in the Pepsi 400 with an average running position of 4.4 and had the fastest speed in both Turns 2 and 4. Busch will need to capture his second consecutive top five at Chicagoland Speedway in hopes of catching the fourth-place driver in the rankings by the end of July.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 8.5
Chicagoland Wins: 0

6. Kurt Busch: Busch jumped from ninth to sixth in the rankings after posting the best average driver rating in the Pepsi 400. He did it driving the same car that was damaged in a crash with Tony Stewart in the season opening Daytona 500. This weekend he will look to continue to gain ground on brother Kyle in the rankings at Chicagoland Speedway where he's coming off two eighth-place finishes.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 17.3
Chicagoland Wins: 0

7. Dale Earnhardt Jr: After getting caught up in the accident between Tony Stewart and Denny Hamlin, Earnhardt Jr. fell two positions in the rankings after finishing 36th in the Pepsi 400. In 2005, the Budweiser Team used pit strategy to win at Chicagoland Speedway. If Junior can score his third consecutive top five at Chicago expect him to move back towards the top five.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 14.5
Chicagoland Wins: 1

8. Matt Kenseth: Kenseth is coming off his 12th top 10 in 31 restrictor-plate starts. His 110.1 average driver rating in the Pepsi 400 was third best among all drivers and tops amongst the Fords. Over the past two years at Chicagoland Speedway, Kenseth had the best car, leading the most laps, but doesn't have a win to show for it. Last year he appeared to be on his way to a win or his second career Chicago top five, but contact from eventual winner Jeff Gordon took him out of contention.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 11.5
Chicagoland Wins: 0

8. Carl Edwards: Edwards' fourth-place finish in the Pepsi 400 was his career best in 12 career restrictor-plate races. If Edwards plans on increasing his position in the rankings he will have to do better than his 29.5 average finish at Chicago, which is his worst among all tracks.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 29.5
Chicagoland Wins: 0

10. Jeff Burton: Burton remains 10th in the rankings, but gave up some more points, to 11th-place ranked Martin Truex Jr., after finishing 16th in the Pepsi 400. This weekend Burton will be going after his second consecutive top-five finish at Chicagoland Speedway.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 21.3
Chicagoland Wins: 0

Power Mover(s)

Tie - Jamie McMurray, Clint Bowyer

McMurray gained 1.3 points in the rankings with his first win in 166 races. He could have gained even more points, but because of his pass through penalty early in the race, McMurray was only able to post the eighth-best average driver rating in the Pepsi 400. Hopefully this weekend's trip to Chicago will bode better than last year, where he finished 39th in his first track start with Roush Fenway Racing.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 20.5
Chicagoland Wins: 0

Bowyer led the most laps in the Pepsi 400, but the an ignition box problem and late race restarts saw Bowyer lose his shot of that elusive first win. Last year at Chicago, Bowyer finished ninth in his first start at the track.

Chicagoland Finishing Average: 9.0
Chicagoland Wins: 0

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