Power Rankings After Chicagoland

M.Truex Jr.

MRN's Pete Pistone unveils this week's Power Rankings following the Tales of the Turtles 400 at Chicagoland Speedway. (Photo: Getty Images)


2017 Driver Ratings

Martin Truex Jr. starts the playoffs in a familiar place - on top of the Power Rankings.

1. Martin Truex Jr.: His day could have easily been over twice on Sunday thanks to a couple of problems on pit road, a speeding penalty and missing lug nuts. But Truex remained undaunted and had a car capable of overcoming that adversity to drive away to a comfortable win and fire the first salvo in the playoff race.

Points Standing: 1st
Previous Ranking: 1st
Driver Rating: 115.8

2. Kyle Larson: Ran top five in Chicagoland and didn’t do anything spectacular or wrong throughout the afternoon. Larson is comfortably in the second spot heading to New Hampshire this week as he eyes a transfer to Round 2 with just another pair of finishes like he had in Chicagoland.

Points Standing: 2nd
Previous Ranking: 2nd
Driver Rating: 103.3

3. Kyle Busch: Was driving a rocket ship most of the weekend, running circles around the competition in the first stage. But miscues on pit road became Busch’s undoing. The swap of the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 and No. 19 pit crews at the start of the playoffs didn’t pay off for Busch.

Points Standing: 5th
Previous Ranking: 3rd
Driver Rating: 107.0

4. Denny Hamlin: Not a bad afternoon in Joliet for Hamlin with a fourth-place finish driving what he said after the race was definitely a "fourth-place car." Nothing to worry about at this point for Hamlin & Co. as they try to advance to Round 2 of the playoffs.

Points Standing: 7th
Previous Ranking: 4th
Driver Rating: 92.5

5. Kevin Harvick: Led laps for the first time in what seems like an eternity. Harvick finished third on a day when his goal was to come out of the Chicagoland playoff opener without any mistakes and a solid run. He accomplished both.

Points Standing: 3rd
Previous Ranking: 7th
Driver Rating: 102.4

6. Brad Keselowski: Started the weekend in a war of words with the Toyota stable and ended it chasing two Camrys across the finish line. Keselowski finished sixth in Chicago and can at least take some satisfaction in that he was ahead of Busch.

Points Standing: 4th
Previous Ranking: 8th
Driver Rating: 97.9

7. Matt Kenseth: A top-10 Chicagoland finish is how Kenseth started his playoff push. He stayed inside the the top 10 most of the afternoon but never really mounted much in the way of a charge for the lead.

Points Standing: 9th
Previous Ranking: 6th
Driver Rating: 90.4

8. Jimmie Johnson: Didn’t exactly turn on the switch everyone was expecting once the playoffs began, but Johnson wasn’t terrible at Chicagoland Speedway. He was average and that’s where he finished, eighth place.

Points Standing: 8th
Previous Ranking: 9th
Driver Rating: 86.5

9. Chase Elliott: A return to the Power Rankings on the strength of a solid run at Chicagoland Speedway to open the playoffs. Elliott led laps but more importantly, he was there at the end near the front of the field to knock down an impressive second-place finish.

Points Standing: 6th
Previous Ranking: NR
Driver Rating: 93.4

10. Jamie McMurray: Wasn’t the best start to the playoffs for McMurray, who spun to bring out one of the day’s few caution flags. He played catch-up the rest of the way and has dug himself a hole in the first race of the post-season.

Points Standing: 11th
Previous Ranking: 10th
Driver Rating: 88.4

Dropped Out: Erik Jones

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