Originally written on Race Review Online  |  Last updated 11/18/14
Gettyimageproxy.ashx_requesturl_http_3a_2f_2fcache.gettyimages.com_2fxc_2f88048265.jpg_3fv_3d1_26c_3dewsasset_26k_3d2_26d_3d17a4ad9fdb9cf1937776ed92a93314c8e0a6d406ca781a3e
Three Drivers’ Championship Hopes Shine Under The Lights Anticipation building and competitors focused, the Dollar General 300 looks to be a Friday night fight under the lights that will have fans on their feet cheering. Standings leader Elliott Sadler will have his hands full trying to hold off the charge of 2011 series champion Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Sunoco Rookie of the Year sensation Austin Dillon at Charlotte Motor Speedway this weekend. Just nine points separate Sadler and Stenhouse, but Dillon is still not out of it, 25 points behind Sadler. Richard Childress Racing’s Sadler has made 11 starts, posting three top fives, four top 10s and an average finish of 18.4. His teammate Dillon has made one series start at the 1.5-mile speedway – starting second and finishing 11th earlier this season. Roush Fenway Racing’s Stenhouse has made six starts at Charlotte, posting one Coors Light pole (spring 2011), one top five, two top 10s and an average finish of 22.1. Stenhouse will run double duty this weekend, strapping into RFR’s No. 6 in Saturday’s NSCS Bank of America 500 as part of his transition to that series next season. In the last five races of the 2011 season, Stenhouse had a better average finish (5.4) than Sadler (6.8), and he also led four times (117) as many laps as Sadler (25). Stenhouse also had a better average Driver Rating (116.6) compared to Sadler (104.1) over that same span of races. Since Dillon is a rookie this season, his statistical sample size is significantly smaller, but at three of the tracks the series returns to in these final five races (Charlotte, Texas, Phoenix) he averaged a finish of 6.7 compared to Sadler’s 6.0 and Stenhouse’s 10.0. Dillon could become the first Sunoco rookie to win the series title or even tie Kyle Busch for the record of highest series rookie points finish (second). Of the top three in the standings, Dillon has the best pre-race Driver Rating (98.7) compared to Sadler (90.1) and Stenhouse (81.0). Fifth And 10th Places Being Hotly Contested As the NASCAR Nationwide Series heads into the final stretch with just five races remaining, the battles for fifth and 10th place in the standings are heating up. When Justin Allgaier and Michael Annett hit the Charlotte track for the Dollar General 300, they will only be separated by 10 points (926 vs. 916). Allgaier, fifth in the standings, has one win, six top-five and 17 top-10 finishes on the season. In eight events at CMS, he has four top-10 finishes. Annett’s best finish in seven events at the track is 13th (October 2009). He sits in sixth place in the standings with six top fives and 14 top 10s. The battle for 10th place is even closer with Danica Patrick (675) only three points behind Joe Nemechek(678). Nemechek has one top-10 finish this season (eighth at Richmond). In 32 NNS appearances at Charlotte, he’s won once (May 1997) and has four top fives and eight top 10s. In 2012, Patrick has one pole and two top 10s. In two races at Charlotte, she finished 21st and 13th.   Wallace To Make 750th National Series Start On Friday Mike Wallace made his first appearance in one of NASCAR’s national series on Oct. 28, 1990, in an NNS event at Martinsville Speedway. He finished sixth that day, after starting 24th. Twenty-two years later, Wallace approaches a milestone that is indicative of the longevity of his career. This Friday, when Wallace competes in the Dollar General 300 at Charlotte it will be his 750th start among NASCAR’s top three series. In 444 NNS starts, Wallace has captured four checkered flags along with 22 top-five and 64 top-10 finishes. His most recent victory came at Daytona in 2004. In 28 starts this season, he has one top-10 finish (seventh in Montreal). His best finish in 31 races at Charlotte was ninth in 1996. Wallace has started 190 races in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with three top fives and 14 top 10s. His best NSCS finish at Charlotte is 12th in 1995. In the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, he’s started 115 races, winning five of them to go with 33 top-five and 56 top-10 finishes. He has never competed in a truck race at Charlotte. NASCAR Nationwide Series, Etc. Chevrolet can mathematically clinch the Bill France Performance Award Friday. If Chevrolet leads the standings by 25 points leaving the race, it will clinch. Chevrolet currently holds a 25-point lead over Toyota. …Danica Patrick will be supporting Breast Cancer Awareness this weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway; her No.7 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet will have a special “Pink” paint scheme. Current NNS points leader Elliott Sadler will also run a special pink paint scheme in honor of his mom (Bell Sadler) who is a breast cancer survivor. He will also wear a pink fire suit and driving shoes. … Three better halves participating in Thursday night’s Better Half Dash Charity Bandolero race at CMS are associated with NNS drivers: Lyn-Z Adams Hawkins Pastrana (wife of NASCAR driver Travis Pastrana), Ashley Allgaier (wife of NASCAR driver Justin Allgaier) and Kristen Yeley (wife of NASCAR driver JJ Yeley). … All-time NNS wins leader, Kyle Busch, has yet to post a victory this season, which could end an eight-year win streak – the longest running win streak in the NNS. NASCAR PR, photo courtesy of NASCARmedia.com
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Lightning reach Stanley Cup Final with Game 7 win

Devon Still: Daughter has complications with transplant

Rivers denies report of problems with CP3 and Jordan

Orlando Magic hope Skiles can right sinking ship

Falcons waive Shembo over animal cruelty charges

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Tom Brady’s suspension appeal hearing set for June 23

Peterson is wrong (sorta): NFL players have great power

Scout: A-Rod 'looks like he doesn't give a (expletive)'

Belichick mum on Deflategate in first remarks since discipline

Dwight Howard suspended for first game of 2015-16 season

Bucs veterans missing Jameis while he's at rookie symposium

WATCH: Josh Hamilton hits first two homers of the season

Did Andrew Bogut take a shot at Mark Jackson?

$70 million Reebok deal is bad for UFC fighters

If the Warriors win the NBA title, the parade will be for Oakland

SEC no longer allows transfers with 'serious misconduct' issues

Klay Thompson officially diagnosed with concussion

Snoop Dogg hooks Texas A&M up with adidas cleats

WATCH: Stephen Curry rides a mini-horse

Metta World Peace gets ejected after five fouls in one minute

On satellite camps and the SEC crying over its self-protections

Four NFL quarterbacks set to take a step back in 2015

Spelling Bee co-champ wears LeBron jersey under shirt

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Lightning reach Stanley Cup Final with Game 7 win

Devon Still's daughter has complications with transplant

$70M Reebok deal is bad for UFC fighters

If the Warriors win the title, the parade will be for Oakland

Peterson is wrong (sorta): NFL players have great power

Dwight Howard suspended for first game of 2015-16 season

Four QBs set to take step back in 2015

Spelling Bee co-champ wears LeBron jersey under shirt

Top 10 stories from 2015 NBA Playoffs

Rangers-Lightning Game 7 preview

The can't-miss Prince Fielder

Chip Kelly: Tebow is a quarterback

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.