The NASCAR Chase for the Sprint Cup for 2011 concludes this weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway. At the end of the Ford 400, the sport will have a new champion. Will it be Carl Edwards or Tony Stewart? Everyone else has been eliminated from contention, but this pair is separated by a mere three points. They're not the only ones with something at stake this weekend, though. All of the Chasers are jockeying for the best final position possible. So who has an edge? Here's a look at how each Chase driver has fared at Homestead.
Kyle Busch (135 points back)
Kyle Busch (right) wants to end his roller-coaster 2011 season with a strong showing. Does he have a chance to do that at Homestead? Busch has six starts at the track, with one top-10 finish. He has two unfinished races and an average finish of 26.3. Busch has a top finish of eighth and has led 30 laps at the track.
Jeff Gordon (112 points back)
Gordon and his Hendrick Motorsports team certainly have endured more than their share of setbacks this season. Now, they'd like to close on a high note and add Homestead to the lengthy list of tracks on which Gordon has won. In 12 Homestead starts, Gordon has nine top-10 finishes, five of them top fives. Combined with only one DNF, that gives him an average finish of 11.8. Gordon's best finish at Homestead is third.
Denny Hamlin (110 points back)
Hamlin and his Joe Gibbs Racing team looked closer to old form last weekend. Can they continue the trend at Homestead? Hamlin has six starts at the track and has one win there. He has three top-five finishes and an average finish of 11.2. Hamlin has led 91 laps at the track.
Ryan Newman (107 points back)
Newman and his Stewart-Haas Racing team are looking to end the season on a high note and give the organization two top-10 teams for the season. Newman gained a lot of ground last week. Can he repeat the feat? At Homestead, Newman has three top-10 finishes in nine starts, with two unfinished races. He has a top finish of sixth and an average finish of 19.1. Newman has led 140 laps at the track.
Kurt Busch (107 points back)
Busch and his Penske Racing team are fighting to stay in the top 10 this weekend. Busch is in a tight group at the bottom of the standings. He has one win in 10 starts at Homestead. He has four top-five finishes and has failed to finish two races at the track. Overall, he has an average finish of 19.4 and has led 92 laps there.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. (102 points back)
Earnhardt Jr. and his Hendrick Motorsports team are among a group of drivers attempting to snap a long winless streak this weekend. Earnhardt Jr. never has enjoyed a strong record at Homestead, though, and still is seeking his first top-10 finish at the track after 11 previous starts there. He has led 93 Homestead laps and has an average finish of 24.2 at the track.
Matt Kenseth (70 points back)
Kenseth (right, with crew chief Jimmy Fennig) and his Roush Fenway Racing team need to stay out of trouble to move back into the top five for the year. Kenseth has 11 starts at Homestead with one win. He has four top-10 finishes, two of them top fives, and a pair of DNFs for an average finish of 18.8. He has led 288 laps at the track.
Getty Images for NASCARJerry Markland
Jimmie Johnson (68 points back)
Johnson and his Hendrick Motorsports team end their five-year NASCAR championship reign this weekend at Homestead. Still, he's looking to gain more positions in the standings — and he finally has a chance to focus on winning at this track instead of keeping an eye on the points. Johnson has 10 starts at the track and a top finish of second. He has two pole positions and has finished in the top 10 seven times, four of those being top fives. Johnson has led 72 laps at Homestead and has an average finish of 11.6.
Brad Keselowski (65 points back)
Keselowski and his Penske Racing team have enjoyed a stellar second half of the season. While he is eliminated from title contention, Keselowski still could gain a spot in the final standings. He hasn't fared all that well at Homestead, though. In his three starts there, Keselowski has a top finish of 13th. He has an average finish of 20.3 at the track.
Kevin Harvick (51 points back)
Harvick has been eliminated from title contention, but he is still fighting for a top points finish. The Richard Childress Racing driver has an average finish of 7.9 in 10 starts at Homestead. While he has yet to win there — Harvick has a top finish of second — he has eight top-10 finishes, five of them top fives, with 116 laps led.
Tony Stewart (three points back)
Stewart has kept the Chase race tight for weeks. Now can he snare his third Sprint Cup title? He's certainly in position to do just that. The Stewart-Haas Racing co-owner/driver has enjoyed his share of success at Homestead. In 12 starts at the track, Stewart has two wins and six top-10 finishes, three of them top-five efforts. He has led 385 laps and posted an average finishing position of 12.4. He also has been running at the finish of every race at the track.
The Roush Fenway Racing driver enters the season finale with a three-point edge over Stewart-Haas Racing's Tony Stewart. The list of scenarios by which either driver can clinch the title is short — one must win to absolutely guarantee that spot. Edwards, who has one victory this season, certainly appears to have the edge at the track. Not only does he have a pair of wins at Homestead, but Edwards has six top-10 finishes in seven starts there. He never has failed to finish a Homestead race and paces the field with an average finishing position of 5.7. Overall, Edwards also eclipses the field in laps led, with 441.