Choose Your City
Change City

3 NASCAR storylines to watch this year

It’s the sport you love to make fun of, but there are actually reasons to watch in ’11.

1 Sports’ most dominant performer

As under-the-radar as he’s been in the Northeast, no modern-day athlete is as outright dominant as Jimmie Johnson.

The California native won his fifth consecutive Sprint Cup championship last season — a streak dating back to 2006.

Though he’s the odds-on favorite to re-re-re-re-re-repeat, the field has never been closer. Look for Denny Hamlin, Carl Edwards and others to make a real run at the “Chase” title under the Sprint Cup’s new scoring system.

2 Ten years later, Earnhardt lives on

Sunday’s Daytona 500 marks the 10th anniversary of the death of Dale Earnhardt, who was killed in the last lap of the 2001 edition of the race.

Truth be told, the sport never regained what it lost when “The Intimidator” died. With fans growing bored of homogenous, bland stars?(we’re looking at you, Johnson), NASCAR brass is surely praying for a Dale Earnhardt Jr. star turn.

3 A scoring system we can understand

Desperate to lure fans back into the fold, NASCAR unveiled a new championship points system this winter.

And it’s actually pretty good.

Basically, race winners get 43 points (plus three bonus points), down to one point for the 43rd-place driver. It’s simple, it’s effective and it rewards trying for first place. All three are major plusses in our book.

Consider AlsoFurther Articles