Kyle Busch, Edwards running into trouble

BY Larry McReynolds • July 29, 2009

There is no question that Kyle Busch and the No. 18 car continue to drop like a rock. They have lost something as of late. When they started the 2009 season, it looked like a continuation of their domination from 2008. They've had mechanical failures, they've had bad driving race cars and it has slapped the wall. Even with three wins under their belt so far this season, if they don't get this turned around, they are absolutely going to miss the Chase.

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If you look at the 2008 season, the record book showed the No. 48 winning the championship but the No. 99 and the No. 18 both were the dominating cars. What's ironic is like the No. 18, the No. 99 just isn't running very well right now. Carl Edwards is hanging in there, but trust me, it's by the hair on his chinny chin chin.

On the positive side of things is David Reutimann. He continues to let everyone know that he is still a player and he is just outside the top 12 in points. He's got six races to go but he needs to get up there and get some consistent top-five finishes. These last six races before the Chase have a wide variety of configurations. The question mark in these remaining six races for David has to be the road course at Watkins Glen.

To me when you look at the top 12 in points right now, it's looking pretty close to what the top 12 should look like coming out of Richmond in September. Brian Vickers, while continuing to have good runs, still has to leapfrog the No. 18 and the No. 00 to even get close to the top 12 and that's a pretty tall order.

There were a couple drivers who aren't Chase contenders that needed and got good runs at Indy on Sunday. Dale Earnhardt Jr. actually ran well all weekend long. Sure, he blew a motor and finished 30th, but the promising thing is that regardless of that, they ran well. They practiced, qualified and raced well too.

The other one that needed a good run and got his best finish since the spring race in Atlanta was Kevin Harvick in the No. 29 car. That group, just from a mental standpoint, needed that kind of run Sunday. Again, they aren't going to make the Chase but Sunday definitely was a positive for them.

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