If it wasn’t bad enough to be second (aka the first loser) in the final Sprint Cup Series championship rundown, here’s another reason to hate it. Since 2007, the driver finishing second has not finished better than seventh the next season. That was done by Jeff Gordon (second in 2007) and Clint Bowyer (second in 2012).
The lucky runner up this season was Matt Kenseth, who in 2006 finished second as well. His follow up season in 2007, he was able to place fourth, which is why we start with Gordon as the first to be cursed.
In 2008 Carl Edwards was runner-up and in 2009 he plummeted to 11th place. Mark Martin took second that season and followed it up by missing the Chase and finishing 13th. In 2010, Denny Hamlin lost the lead and title on the last race. The next season he could only manage a ninth place finish.
Carl Edwards was up again after going blow for blow with Tony Stewart in 2011 and coming up short. The next season he not only missed the Chase, but was 15th with no wins when it was all said and done. Clint Bowyer, as mentioned before, has tied the best finish mark by finishing in the seventh position in this year’s standings.
Not only does Kenseth have the past to show he might buck this trend, but his team was strong all season long, and can’t possible fall off that much in 2014. Or can he? Maybe we should ask Carl Edwards how 2012 went for him. Kenseth fans, you might want to worry about next season.