I always geek out on the chassis selections NASCAR Sprint Cup teams pick for a given race weekend. With just two races left in the 2014 season, it’s not surprising that of those reporting the chassis they’re using for this weekend, there’s only a single new and unraced one.
What is surprising is that the history of the chassis don’t all have that great results in past races.
One other caveat is that Phoenix International Raceway, being a mile track only has a couple other similar tracks, making reuse of chassis likely to be limited to Dover, New Hampshire and possibly Atlanta and Martinsville.
Of the Chase teams reporting their usage, here’s the list and history of the chassis, from best to worst.
Kevin Harvick: Harvick’s primary chassis for Phoenix has been used the second most of any of the Chase drivers reporting their chassis and is the only one that has a win on the reported chassis. The No. 4 chassis finished a second to last place (42nd) at Las Vegas in March, and 13th in September’s Dover race where Harvick led laps, but ultimately had a flat tire that finished him in 13th. This primary chassis was also in victory lane this year back in April at Darlington, making it the only reported chassis for Phoenix that won in 2014.
Ryan Newman: The primary chassis for the No. 31 has been used the most in 2014 of any of the remaining Chase drivers with four starts. The chassis’ best finish was at Charlotte Motor Speedway, where it finished 7th. Additionally, the chassis finished in 15th at Chicagoland, and 11th at both Michigan Indianapolis.
Carl Edwards: The #99 chassis last raced in 2014 at the fall Dover race, where Edwards finished just out of the top ten with a 11th place finish.
Joey Logano: Penske Racing’s No. 22 chassis last was raced at the short track of Atlanta where Logano finished 14th.
Brad Keselowski: Bad Brad’s primary chassis was last raced in August at the short track of Atlanta where he finished 39th. After Charlotte and Texas, a lot of fans and drivers are hoping the No. 2 finishes in a similar position this weekend.
Jeff Gordon: The No. 24 is the only Chase driver reporting that’s bring a brand new race chassis to the final Eliminator round race. While it probably is of little consequence, it is interesting that the Hendrick Motorsports crew chief Alan Gustafson decided on bringing a brand new car to Phoenix when a lot is on the line.
Overall, a chassis’ history doesn’t dictate it’s future, but it’s fun looking at the past, present and future of a given car for those still racing for the 2014 Sprint Cup. If you put any stock in their 2014 histories, Harvick should have a good weekend with Newman and Edwards close behind.