NASCAR

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NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31266585 Greg Biffle Greg+Biffle NASCAR

Team: Roush Fenway Racing
Points position: First
Why he’s still in the running: Biffle leads the points heading into the final race before the Chase begins. He also has a pair of wins. But unless he wins at Richmond, he'll forfeit that lead when the points are reset with bonuses for wins when the Chase field is seeded. He locked into the race at Bristol, one of the first three drivers to do so.

Jerome Miron - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G3-AA_20120815144310993_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G3-AA_20120815144310993_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31266584 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Dale+Earnhardt+Jr. NASCAR

Team: Hendrick Motorsports
Points position: Second
Why he’s still in the running: He's locked in. Earnhardt Jr. opened the season with 20 consecutive finishes on the lead lap and has enjoyed top finishes since that time. He's running well week to week, his team seems confident and he has nothing to hold him back at Richmond. Junior locked into the Chase at Bristol - so he's just chasing a second win for the season Saturday night.

Kevin Liles - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G5-AA_20120815144310992_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G5-AA_20120815144310992_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31263880 Matt Kenseth Matt+Kenseth NASCAR

Team: Roush Fenway Racing
Points position: Third
Why he’s still in the running: Kenseth locked into the Chase field with his ninth-place finish at Atlanta Sunday night. He has one win this season, which will drop him in the standings and leaves him hungering for a second this weekend at Richmond. Kenseth has 15 top-10 finishes this season, nine of them top fives.

Kevin Liles - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G4-AA_20120815144310991_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G4-AA_20120815144310991_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31266583 Jimmie Johnson Jimmie+Johnson NASCAR

Team: Hendrick Motorsports
Points position: Fourth
Why he’s still in the running: The five-time champ is in the Chase. He has three victories, which will now net him bonus points, and he locked into the field at Bristol. He ran well at Atlanta and looked like he might snare another win there, but crashed out late. After setbacks in two of the last three races, Johnson is certain to be going for it all at Richmond.

Michael Hickey - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G2-AA_20120815144310990_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G2-AA_20120815144310990_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31268402 Martin Truex Jr. Martin+Truex+Jr. NASCAR

Team: Michael Waltrip Racing
Points position: Fifth
Why he’s still in the running: Truex suffered a heartbreaking disappointment at Atlanta, where he led 40 laps late and held a two-plus second lead before a caution pushed the race into a green-white-checker finish. He lost the lead on the ensuing pit stop and settled for fourth. Still, Truex is one of two Michael Waltrip Racing drivers to lock into the Chase at Atlanta - the first two slots in the title-determining field for the organization. 

Jerome Miron - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G7-AA_20120815144331996_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G7-AA_20120815144331996_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31263879 Brad Keselowski Brad+Keselowski NASCAR

Team: Penske Racing
Points position: Sixth
Why he’s still in the running: Keselowski locked up a spot in his second consecutive Chase with his third-place finish at Atlanta. He enters Richmond with three wins, which puts him three points behind Denny Hamlin after the race unless he wins Saturday night.

Andrew Weber - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G6-AA_20120815144311994_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G6-AA_20120815144311994_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31267453 Denny Hamlin Denny+Hamlin NASCAR

Team: Joe Gibbs Racing
Points position: Seventh
Why he’s still in the running: Hamlin is locked into the Chase - and is currently set to take over the points lead once it begins. The only question now is whether or not he will have sole possession of the most points when the field is reseeded with bonus points for wins when the Chase starts. Hamlin has four victories, most in the Cup series, and has a history of strong runs at the track.

Gary A. Vasquez - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G11-AA_201208151443374_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G11-AA_201208151443374_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31267451 Clint Bowyer Clint+Bowyer NASCAR

Team: Michael Waltrip Racing
Points position: Eighth
Why he’s still in the running: Bowyer locked into the Chase at Atlanta, giving Michael Waltrip Racing two drivers in the field this year. Bowyer has one win this season and joins the list of drivers chasing bonus points at Richmond. He's also looking to rally past a rough Atlanta outing that resulted in a 27th-place finish.
 

Kevin Liles - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G8-AA_20120815144333998_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G8-AA_20120815144333998_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31268401 Kevin Harvick Kevin+Harvick NASCAR

Team: Richard Childress Racing
Points position: Ninth
Why he’s still in the running: Harvick locked into the Chase at Atlanta. Now if he can just get a win. As of right now, Harvick will not receive any bonus points once the Chase begins as he has not won this season. That will put him 12 points behind Denny Hamlin from the start unless he can win at Richmond.

Peter Casey - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G10-AA_201208151443352_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G10-AA_201208151443352_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31267452 Tony Stewart Tony+Stewart NASCAR

Team: Stewart-Haas Racing
Points position: 10th
Why he’s still in the running: Stewart's recent struggles continued at Atlanta, but he's going to be in the Chase. The only question now is whether he makes it as a driver in the top 10, and therefore one getting the bonus points for each of his three wins, or as the wild card and not getting those bonus points. Stewart has more wins than any driver not locked in, so he is definitely in the Chase.

Jennifer Stewart - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G9-AA_201208151443330_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G9-AA_201208151443330_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31269148 Kasey Kahne Kasey+Kahne+ NASCAR

Team: Hendrick Motorsports
Points position: 11th
Why he’s still in the running: Kahne is not quite in the top 10, but he's certainly close - and he's been challenging to get into the field for weeks. It would take a series of events to keep him out of the Chase, though, as he is the only driver with two wins that is not locked into the field. Kahne is in command of the wild-card race. He's also only 18 points out of 10th. How can he clinch? If Stewart stays in the top 10, or if Kahne moves into the top 10, he clinches a spot. If Stewart falls out of the top 10, he's automatically in if a one-win driver outside the top 10 does not win. If Kyle Busch overtakes Stewart in the top 10, and Jeff Gordon wins, Kahne clinches by finishing 13th or better, 14th with at least one lap led or 15th with the most laps led. If Jeff Gordon replaces Stewart in the top 10, and Kyle Busch wins, Kahne clinches a spot by finishing second with the most laps led.

Mandatory credit: Michael Hickey-US PRESSWIRE - http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-1_2012081514064861_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-1_2012081514064861_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31267427 Kyle Busch Kyle+Busch+ NASCAR

Team: Joe Gibbs Racing
Points position: 12th
Why he’s still in the running: Busch currently has hold of the second wild-card slot with a 12-point edge over Jeff Gordon in the standings. Each has one win this season. There are five drivers outside the top 10 with one win, and a victory by any of them changes the wild-card race. How can he clinch? Barring a win by any other driver with one victory (the wild-card's first criteria is wins), if Tony Stewart remains in the top 10 or if Kasey Kahne replaces Stewart in the top 10, Busch will clinch by losing 12 or fewer points to Jeff Gordon and losing 40 or fewer points to Marcos Ambrose. If Jeff Gordon replaces Stewart in the top 10, Busch would clinch with a win and finishing five positions ahead of Kahne.
 

Stew Milne-US PRESSWIRE - http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-4_2012081514064865_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-4_2012081514064865_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31267430 Jeff Gordon Jeff+Gordon NASCAR

Team: Hendrick Motorsports
Points position: 14th
Why he’s still in the running: Gordon finished second at Atlanta, but he's still third in the wild-card battle. A win would certainly help his cause Saturday night. How can he clinch? If no other one-win driver wins, and if Tony Stewart remains in the top 10 or if Kasey Kahne replaces Stewart in the top 10, Gordon will clinch by finishing 13 points ahead of Busch and by losing 28 or fewer points to Marcos Ambrose and by losing 37 or fewer points to Ryan Newman. If Busch replaces Stewart in the top 10, Gordon would clinch with a win and finishing 18 points ahead of Kahne.

Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-US PRESSWIRE - http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-5_2012081514064864_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-5_2012081514064864_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31269147 Carl Edwards Carl+Edwards+ NASCAR

Team: Roush Fenway Racing
Points position: 15th
Why he’s still in the running: Edwards suffered an engine failure at Atlanta, which seriously dimmed his Chase hopes. He could still get into the field, but he'll need a little help in terms of struggles by the drivers in front of him. How can he clinch? If he wins and Kyle Busch finishes 24th or worse with no laps led and Jeff Gordon finishes 12th or worse, he will be in the Chase. If either Busch or Gordon knock Tony Stewart out of the top 10 in the standings, then Edwards is eliminated no matter what he does at Richmond. 


 

Mandatory Credit: Kevin Liles-US PRESSWIRE - http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-2_2012081514064862_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-2_2012081514064862_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31267429 Paul Menard Paul+Menard+ NASCAR

Team: Richard Childress Racing
Points position: 15th
Why he’s still in the running: Menard remains in the running for a Chase berth. He cannot make the Chase, though, without some of the other drivers in the battle faltering at Richmond. How can he clinch? Menard needs to win and Kyle Busch has to finish 34th or worse (with no laps led) and Jeff Gordon has to finish 22nd or worse (with no laps led). If Busch or Gordon replace Tony Stewart in the top 10, Menard will be eliminated.

Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-US PRESSWIRE - http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-6_2012081514064866_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-6_2012081514064866_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31267431 Marcos Ambrose Marcos+Ambrose++ NASCAR

Team: Richard Petty Motorsports
Points position: 16th
Why he’s still in the running: Ambrose has a win to his credit this season, which is keeping him in the wild-card race at Richmond. He could still make his first Chase. How could he clinch? First, none of the other one-win drivers outside the top 10 can win. Then, if Tony Stewart remains in the top 10 or if Kasey Kahne replaces Stewart in the top 10, Ambrose will clinch by finishing 41 points ahead of Kyle Busch and 29 points ahead of Jeff Gordon and by losing eight or fewer points to Ryan Newman and by losing 41 or fewer points to Joey Logano.

Ed Szczepanski-US PRESSWIRE - http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-7_2012081514070768_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-7_2012081514070768_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31267428 Ryan Newman Ryan+Newman+ NASCAR

Team: Stewart-Haas Racing
Points position: 17th
Why he’s still in the running: Newman was caught up in a late crash at Atlanta, hurting his Chase effort. By virtue of having a win this season, though, he's in contention for a berth in the field. How can he clinch? Newman has to win. If either Kyle Busch or Jeff Gordon replace Tony Stewart in the top 10, Newman will be eliminated, regardless of his performance. 

Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE - http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-3_2012081514064863_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-3_2012081514064863_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31267432 Joey Logano Joey+Logano+ NASCAR

Team: Joe Gibbs Racing
Points position: 18th
Why he’s still in the running: Logano turned in a gutsy performance at Atlanta Sunday night, racing despite feeling unwell throughout the race weekend. His lone win of the season has kept him in contention for a Chase berth. How can he clinch? He has to win. In addition, if either Kyle Busch or Jeff Gordon replace Stewart in the top 10, Logano will be eliminated.

Jerome Miron-US PRESSWIRE - http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-8_2012081514071571_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-NASCAR-Chase-Contenders-Gallery-SW-8_2012081514071571_107_80.JPG
NASCAR 167 43 Tight race: Who is still in the hunt for a Chase berth? 31266586 Race to the Chase Race+to+the+Chase NASCAR

With just one race to go before NASCAR’s Chase for the Sprint Cup field is set, several drivers are still mathematically in the running to qualify.

The interesting thing is that even those drivers who as of right now are not in position to make up enough points on the top 10 to break into that field have a glimmer of hope through the wild-card spot. Any driver that can make up enough ground to be in the top 20 could technically move into the field if he wins enough races to snare a wild-card spot.

Still, only those who can make up enough ground to be in the top 10 in the standings, or who already have at least one win, are truly in the Chase picture. With that in mind, here’s a look at all the drivers that can still make up enough points to be in the top 10 in the standings or grab a wild card make the Chase field after Saturday.
 

Rob Grabowski - USA TODAY Sports http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G1-AA_20120815144310989_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fscom/img/2012/08/15/081512-Nascar-Chase-Contenders-G1-AA_20120815144310989_107_80.JPG
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