Sunday, February 10, 2008

Okay, you can let go of my arm now.

Because I have finally decided to post my pre-season predictions. Everybody else who posts predictions has done so, and I can't read their picks until I pick mine.
So here goes:
Top Twelve (in no particular order):
Tony Stewart
The DeWalt Driver (I promised Babs that I will not mention his name here, because every time I have in the past it seems to jinx him. He is, after all, one of my second favorite drivers.)
Kyle Busch
Denny Hamlin
Carl Edwards
Jeff Gordon
Jimmy Johnson
Dale Earnhardt, Jr
Martin Truex, Jr
Juan Pablo Montoya
Ryan Newman
Kurt Busch
Biggest story of the year:
The return of the manufacturer's rivalry. Toyota and Chevrolet will enter a rivalry reminiscent of the old days, as Toyota ends Chevy's near domination of NASCAR. This will be good, economically, for both manufacturers, and auto sales for both will rise in volume as a result.
Dark Horse story of the year:
Dave Blaney will finally get his first Cup victory.
Rookie of the Year:
There are three viable choices here. Dario Franchitti, Regan Smith, and Michael McDowell. I would love to pick McDowell, as he is relatively unknown among NASCAR fans and press, and he is a very talented driver. However, I think Smith has the talent and drive of Denny Hamlin in his rookie year, and, unlike McDowell, he will be running a full season. So Regan Smith is my pick for this category.
And, finally, my prediction for the 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion:
I do not think Jimmy Johnson will threepeat, though he will continue to increase his wins column. This really is Tony Stewart's year, because everything already seems to be going his way. He has already shown a controversial demonstration of his passion, and that passion is what wins him races and championships. Being the top driver for Toyota has also given him incentive to race for a new goal. I think the points race will be close, throughout the first 26 races, and even through the final ten, but I do believe Stewart will prevail.
Yes I am prejudiced, but I did try to be as objective as possible in my choices.
This will be a great season for NASCAR I feel, with the return of old school racing and very close competition. Enjoy!


Racedriven said...

Wo9w, what a list, for the most part I agree with you, however with first the top 12, got to bubble Denny Hamlin, Martin Truex Jr., Juan Montoya and Ryan Newman. I would add Clint Bowyer, Kevin Harvick, maybe Jeff Burton...

As for the champion, Jimmie Johnson could threepeat, however my favorite driver in that #88 will challenge, if Toyota can get there on engines, then Tony Stewart maybe champion nad of course the drive for 5 Jeff Gordon. Personally not Jeff Gordon.

no124fan said...

i will say smoke's a good pick for anothe cup, and toyota was lookin' pretty good @ the shootout, but, if smoke doesn't get the drafting help @restrictor plate tracks he's doomed to fall to the hendricks juggernaut freight train, i.e 1,3,4,6 @the shootout, jj and jg in backup cars nonetheless. and keep that sour shrub away from the 20 and he shd do fine. any word on any penalties and of fines for practice scuffle yet ???

ZuDfunck said...

I am just happy NASCAR is Back!

How can one predict anything when there is so much different this year

Good luck on that...


Babs said...

John Paul in the top 12? Hmmmm...
Thank you for not jinxing my driver!
Is it time for the duels yet? I'm impatient.

RevJim said...

Thank you to everone for your comments! I am no expert, after all, though I do hope to beat the experts in my picks.
Believe me, before I posted my top twelve picks, I looked hard for a way to replace some of them with one or more of the RCR drivers, because that team includes three of my second favorites. But with the uncertainty of the new car, as zudfunck pointed out, makes such predictions very difficult in the first place. Adaptability is a big factor this year, and my picks are mostly based on the reputation the drivers have for adaptability. Personally, I hope I am wrong in three places, and all three of the RCR drivers make the Chase. I will stick by my premise that this will be a fun season and a great one.

Green Green Green! said...

who did you predict last year?
oh, by the way...we're BACK!