Contender Round Kicks Off with Team Penske and Hendrick Motorsports Battle

WRITTEN BY: Jonah Rens is 13 years old, and is a junior NASCAR reporter/writer for The Final Lap. His opinions are his own, and not necessarily those of The Final Lap. Follow him on Twitter @NascarRens

We are heading into the fourth race into this ten race, four round Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Already Team Penske is in command, with Hendrick Motorsports not too far off.

Team Penske began the Chase for the Sprint Cup strong with a victory in the first chase race at Chicagoland Speedway, and ironically one of Hendrick’s four drivers, Jeff Gordon wasn’t to far behind in that late race battle finishing a solid third.

The second Chase race in New Hampshire and Team Penske won again, this time with Joey Logano. After that race, Team Penske again was running up front when the series headed to Dover for the final race in the round.

Four drivers in points 13th through 16th were eliminated and at the end of 400 miles the Challenger round said goodbye to AJ Allmendinger, who got the win at Watkins Glen, Kurt Busch who won Martinsville Speedway after a duel with Jimmie Johnson, Greg Biffle who barely made the Chase at Richmond by a mere seven points, and Aric Almirola who won at Daytona in July.

As we begin the next round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, The Contender Round has races at Kansas Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway, and a track where anything can happen, especially on The Final Lap, Talladega Superspeedway.

The top twelve drivers in points have their points reset to 3,000 and four more drivers are eliminated but I can almost guarantee you that of those four who are gonna be eliminated it won’t be Team Penske or one of Hendrick Motorsports dominant drivers. We may even see a Penske/Hendrick final four at Homestead, But as of now it’s all about The Contender Round.