Now, with the stress and media blitz that is Daytona over, the drivers can concentrate on the rest of the 2012 season.  The top ten drivers in the standings coming out of the Daytona 500 are as follows:

1              Matt Kenseth

2              Dale Earnhardt Jr.

3              Greg Biffle

4              Denny Hamlin

5              Jeff Burton

6              Paul Menard

7              Kevin Harvick

8              Carl Edwards

9              Joey Logano

10           Mark Martin

However, with only one race down the whole field is only separated by 46 points (excluding Jimmy Johnson, but we will get to him in a minute).  The field can change drastically after the next few races.  I for one hope this week the race runs on time and that Juan Pablo Montoya will not run into a jet dryer, that two-hour delay was a killer.  I think the usual suspects will need to be watched: Stewart, Gordon (Jeff), Harvick, Edwards, Johnson to mention a few, but I think that Earnhardt, Khane, Keselowski could be key players this week.  I have predicted that Dale Jr. will win one of the next 5 races and Kasey Kahne won the Phoenix race last November.  I say Brad Keselowski needs to be watched mostly because of a gut feeling.  I know he didn’t have a strong finish last week but time will tell.

Big news in the wake of the Daytona 500: NASCAR has suspended Jimmy Johnson’s Crew Chief, Chad Knaus and car chief Ron Malec for modifications to parts of the car.  They have also assessed Johnson with a 25-point penalty for this which has him in negative territory (-23) after his lap 2 wreck at Daytona.  Hendricks is appealing the penalties and suspensions so in the meantime, Knaus and Malec will be at the races.  A full article can be found on NASCAR.com.

The race will run on Sunday March 4th, 2012 at 2:30pm on Fox.  I’ll be watching.  Let me know what you think…

This last part is for all you NASCAR novices: Here is a great link for reference: http://www.nascar.com/kyn/ it is called NASCAR 101 and has a lot of NASCAR history and the points system and The Chase, etc.