Sprint Cup Coming Down to the Wire

The Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 will be taking place this Sunday at the Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. The semi-final race for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series comes on the heels of Jimmie Johnson’s victory last week in the AAA Texas 500 at the Texas Motor Speedway.  This is the final opportunity for drivers to qualify for the season-ending championship finale on November 16th in the Ford Ecoboost 400 so expect drivers to be on edge this week and a fast and furious show at the track.

Currently, the median ticket price for Quicken Loans 500 tickets is $54 on TicketCity.  There are cheaper tickets available with general admission seats beginning at just $37 and grandstand seats starting at $47.

Last week’s second place finisher, Kevin Harvick, has won three of the past four races at the Phoenix International Speedway.  With Harvick’s strong performance last week, he will certainly be an early favorite for the race and a driver that fans should keep an eye on out on the track.  He’s currently eight in the Sprint Cup standings, trailing leaders Joey Logano and Denny Hamlin by eighteen points.

Here’s a look at the full Sprint Cup standings:

  1. Joey Logano (Team Penske) – 4072 points | 34 starts | 5 Wins
  2. Denny Hamlin (Joe Gibbs Racing) – 4072 points | 33 starts | 1 Win
  3. Ryan Newman (Richard Childress Racing) – 4070 points | 34 starts | 0 Wins
  4. Jeff Gordon (Hendrick Motorsports) – 4060 points | 34 starts | 4 Wins
  5. Matt Kenseth (Joe Gibbs Racing) – 4059 points | 34 starts | 0 Wins
  6. Carl Edwards (Roush Fenway Racing) – 4059 points | 34 starts | 2 Wins
  7. Brad Keselowski (Team Penske) – 4055 points | 34 starts | 6 Wins
  8. Kevin Harvick (Stewart-Haas Racing) – 4054 points | 34 starts | 3 Wins
  9. Kyle Busch (Joe Gibbs Racing) – 2270 points | 34 starts | 1 Wins
  10. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. (Hendrick Motorsports) – 2234 points | 34 starts | 4 Wins

Team Penske and Joe Gibbs Racing boast two drivers each in the top seven in the standings, giving both groups a very strong chance at eventually having the Chase champion. Team Penske’s Joey Logano has been in first place, or within a few points of first place, basically all year long.  Meanwhile, Brad Keselowski seems to be rolling on all cylinders after starting 26th last week in Texas and eventually pushing Jimmie Johnson all the way to the end.  Keselowski ultimately took home third place and will look to build on that this week.  Considering the pole historically has held less importance at Phoenix compared to other races, Keselowski could potentially take home the win even if he starts at a high spot.

The number nine and ten spots in the standings are currently held by Kyle Busch and Dale Earnhardt, Jr.  Unfortunately, each driver has each been eliminated from Cup contention, though both racers will certainly play a big role in this week’s race.  With just two races left to go, NASCAR fans should make sure to get out to the track this weekend to see the penultimate race of the year!