Kurt Busch – Did Kurt Busch have the best car last fall at Las Vegas! No! “Performance Wise”, I think Busch was low double-digit to mid-teens good. Before the game changing caution late which propelled him to the front he was running in 14th with 37 to go. In the race, Busch’s average running position was 12.8.
Chase Elliott – Chase Elliott had one of the best cars last fall at Las Vegas, but you wouldn’t know that by looking at his asterisk mark 22nd place finish. In the race he finished 4th in Stage #1, won Stage #2, led 73 laps and had a 4.4 average running position. Elliott wasn’t at his best during late restarts, and with 37 laps to go before a game changing caution during the pit cycle he was running in 6th. That caution during the pit cycle dropped him back to the high-teens and he just never bounced back.
Austin Dillon – Austin Dillon was clearly a top ten contender last fall at Las Vegas, but he finished an asterisk mark 32nd. In the race he finished 6th in Stage #1, 6th in Stage #2 but then in the last Stage his evening unraveled. With 77 laps to go he was in 7th, but then during a caution with about 75 to go he got a safety violation during his pit stop which dropped him to the back. Then about 20 laps later, Dillon had a power steering fluid leak which caused him to make an extended pit stop which ruined his afternoon.