Start 'N' Park Blog

2017 Team Rankings – Race 5

Here are the team rankings after five races, the most recent being at the Auto Club Speedway. The race itself I thought was a tad boring at times, but had just enough excitement to keep me watching throughout.

1              Chip Ganassi Racing

It’s only five races but this victory by Kyle Larson gives this run some credibility. I thought it was luck falling Larson’s way so far in 2017, but he appears to be for real. And everywhere Larson goes, Jamie McMurray is not far behind, he scored another top-10 finish this weekend.

2              Team Penske

Hard to say Team Penske shouldn’t be first, but the numbers just fall in Ganassi’s favor. That’s after Brad Keselowski came home second with a damaged car, and Joey Logano fifth. Keselowski’s run, damage aside, was impressive too with having to turn to a backup crew chief with Paul Wolfe suspended.

3              Furniture Row Racing

Here is another duo that’s doing alright to start the season, Martin Truex Jr and Erik Jones. Many assumed Truex would keep up the pace he was running in 2016, but Jones is the surprise. The rookie finished 12th and is getting the consistency that will be him a contender in no time.

4              Wood Brothers Racing

The Wood Brothers are for real, and so is Ryan Blaney. Another top-10 for the team and they are showing no signs of slowing down any time soon.

5              Hendrick Motorsports

Chase Elliott once again led the way for HMS, but the rest of the cars struggled. Well, check that, for Dale Earnhardt Jr finishing 16th was a welcome change to most of his recent finishes. It was just off an off day via strategy for Jimmie Johnson, and then there was Kasey Kahne doing his thing.

6              Roush Fenway Racing

If you’re going to wreck, just don’t take out your teammate. That memo was not passed along to Ricky Stenhouse Jr, who lost it and collected his teammate Trevor Bayne. Both bounced back to finish 22nd and 23rd, but that’s not going to make for a good meeting after the race.

7              Stewart-Haas Racing

After a quick start SHR appears to be struggling to get all four teams running up front. Clint Bowyer continues to show he can still drive by capturing a season best third place finish. Kevin Harvick was a quiet 13th, while Kurt Busch and Danica Patrick just broke into the mid-20s.

8              Richard Childress Racing

Coming off a much needed win, RCR looked rather flat this weekend. Austin Dillon finished best at 11th, Ryan Newman was a decent 15th and Paul Menard showed up to finish 28th.

9              Joe Gibbs Racing

I’m having trouble trying to figure out JGR this year. Just when they look down for the count, they rebound. Once they rebound, they don’t look so good. Then there’s Matt Kenseth who is having just about everything go wrong for him. Daniel Suarez led the way with another top-10 finish with Kyle Busch right behind him, Denny Hamlin was a decent 14th, and Kenseth crashed out in 36th.

10           Leavine Family Racing

The car had wood panel graphics on the side of the car, that was cool. Finishing 33rd was not as cool.

11           Germain Racing

Ty Dillon and company jump in the standings thanks to those around them doing worse than himself. That says a lot.

12           Richard Petty Motorsports

Aric Almirola was a quiet 19th and finished looking at Ty Dillon, which is why he’s looking up at him now in the rankings.

13           JTG Daugherty Racing

I’m beginning to think expanding to two cars was not a good idea for this team. Don’t get me wrong, they’re not awful, they’re just not anything good. AJ Allmendinger was 17th and Chris Buescher was 25th.

14           TriStar Motorsports

Lackluster 32nd place finish for Cole Whitt.

15           Go FAS Racing

Hey a top-30 finish! Even if it’s 29th, it still counts!

16           Front Row Motorsports

Like JTG above, Front Row isn’t doing horrible, it’s just they’re there. Landon Cassill finished 27th and David Ragan 31st. That’s about as good as it might get for them.

17           Beard Motorsports

Did not attempt Fontana.

18           Tommy Baldwin Racing

Did not attempt Fontana.

19           Premium Motorsports

Amazing two teams ahead of them don’t even race and Premium is still here, but they’re not the most disappointing team. Anyways, 34th and 38th place finishes aren’t much to write home about.

20           Circle Sport with TMG

They traveled a long way to park it after 99 laps.

21           BK Racing

Somehow running two cars each week, this team can’t get out of the basement of the rankings. It probably has to do with each driver’s uncanny ability to crash in every event. Props to Corey LaJoie who did run the full race.

22           Rick Ware Racing

On the bright side, they didn’t totally lose the Bubba Burger sponsorship to BK! They both shared this weekend. Aw, isn’t that nice?

23           Gaunt Brothers Racing

Did not attempt Fontana.