Pocono this weekend is going to be another one of those few tracks that this new Generation 6 Sprint Cup Series race car has not been to in 2013. I think this will be a new adventure for this car and, naturally, the drivers and their teams. It’s a 2-1/2-mile track that is flat and fast.
People have been asking me all week who I think will be strong there. I think the jury is out on that question. If you look at the first 13 races we’ve had, you tend to believe it will be more of the same between Joe Gibbs Racing and Hendrick Motorsports. Obviously, from the Gibbs camp and all the other Toyota camps, there are going to be a lot of serious meetings about the continued engine problems.
See last week at Dover: It’s not known to be that hard on engines, but it was. This weekend at Pocono, however, is a track that will absolutely drive engine builders crazy. Remember, this joint has three straightaways, so the RPMs will be going up three times a lap. Even though this race was reduced from 500 to 400 laps, trust me, it is going to be a nail-biter for these engine guys.
Joey Logano might be the guy to watch this weekend. He had a great two weeks at Charlotte. He’s running great. He rebounded at Dover from being two laps down to finish seventh. Plus, he won this race a year ago.
I also like Kurt Busch’s chances this weekend. It seems they are fast every single weekend. Their only Achilles’ heel seems to be being able to put together a beginning, middle and end of a race. If they can run well in all three portions this weekend, it would be no surprise to me to see that No. 78 celebrate in victory lane.
Two other organizations you might consider as favorites would be Stewart-Haas Racing and Richard Childress Racing. Both groups tested up at Pocono last week. Obviously, you also have Tony Stewart full of momentum from his win at Dover, so keep your eye on that No. 14 car because I think Dover might have been the turning point for Stewart’s season.