As the old aphorism goes, there’s nothing certain except death and taxes.
After Sunday’s TicketGuardian 500 at ISM Raceway, you can add Kevin Harvick at Phoenix to that list.
Harvick beat Kyle Busch to the finish line by .774 seconds to win his third straight Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series of the season, the first time a driver has strung three victories together since Busch accomplished the feat at Kentucky, New Hampshire, and Indianapolis.
The victory was a record ninth for Harvick at the one-mile track in the Sonoran Desert and the 40th of his career, third-most among active drivers and tied with NASCAR Hall of Famer Mark Martin for 18th on the all-time victory list.
But the win was more than a statistical triumph for the driver of the No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford. Harvick came to Phoenix with a chip on his shoulder, stung by a midweek penalty for issues with the roof braces and right rear side skirt extension after last week’s race-winning car from Las Vegas.
The Fraternal Order of The Go Fast
Six players are obvious students of NASCAR and Phoenix International Speedway, now known as ISM Raceway history. Those six players include David The Mudslinging Throttle Jockey, Jerry The Buschwacker, Snoopy Dawn, Jim, aka Chiefy, Edie The Las Vegas Super Star, as well as Leon Your Most Humble Sheriff. This group wisely selected now the 10-time track winner, the hottest driver in 2018 with three victories in the first four races, “Freaky Fast” Kevin Harvick. These players racked up a cool 53 points this week.
The Movers and Shakers
Don The Engine Builder, A&M Aggie Sue, and Dan The Numbers Cruncher were rooting for “The Shrub“, aka Kyle Busch, at ISM Speedway. All three players added a very nice score, 52 points, to their 1st segment tally this week.
Meanwhile, four players, Kathy The Church Forecloser, Lonna The Quilt Angel, Carole, aka Rudy, as well as Ol Skid-Marc, were riding shotgun with “The Outlaw”, who is now trying to heal his former persona and going by his given name, Kurt Busch. All four players made out like a bandit scoring 40 points for Phoenix.
William Clyde Elliott, Jr. aka Chase, had a very strong performance in The Valley of The Sun and had the unyielding support of two of our players at Phoenix, Lonna The Quilt Angel and Doug The Gandy Candy Man. These two players added 39 points to their totals as the Sunset on ISM Raceway.
Rounding out the top five scorers for the week is Zee, aka Sissy. Sissy was neatly tucked into the copilot’s seat of the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 20 driven by young gun Erik Jones.
Since it is still early in the 1st segment, and there were many different selections this week, suffice it to say that there was massive movement within the ranks of the scoring pylon. Leading the way this week was A&M Aggie Sue and Jeremy The Coach with the largest scale of movement. Aggie Sue rocketed up the scoring totem pole six (6) places to now rest in 8th place. However, Jeremy The Coach did not fare so well this week. The Coach plummeted six spots to sit in 15th place.
The volatility continued with Karen The Highly Opinionated Southern Belle, Bernie The Bay Area Bandit and Dan The Numbers Cruncher. Each of these players moved five (5) places when the checkered flag flew at Phoenix. Dan The Numbers Dude did the best out this group moving up to now sit in 14th place. Conversely, The Highly Opinionated One and The Bay Area Bandit stumbled and fell from grace landing in 11th and 12th, respectively.
Next on the list is a quartet that consists of Jerry The Buschwacker, Jim, aka Chiefy, Zee, aka Sissy, and Linda B. The Cookie Mom, each moving four (4) positions this week. The Buschwacker and Chiefy are toasting their success as they stepped up on the leaderboard this week to sit in 7th and 16th, respectively. Whereas Sissy and The Cookie Mom fell down this week landing in 17th and 20th places, respectively.
In a league all by himself, this week rests The Gandy Candy Man who lost three (3) places and resides in 5th place.
Rounding out the top five movers this week is a quartet consisting of Don The Cubic Dollars Dude, Carole, aka Rudy, Ol Skid-Marc, and Snoopy Dawn, all moved up two spots on the totem pole this week to now rest in 6th, 10th, 13th, and 19th, respectively.
Straight From The Crapper
The winner of “The Crappiest Pick of The Week” award goes to Linda B. The Cookie Mom. Although The Cookie Mom really did not have a really terrible race, she did score only 15 points, which was the lowest score for this race.
There has been no change in who is holding down “The Outhouse” single-handedly this week. Once again Linda R. The Lemonade Lefty is all alone, and securing the fort for everyone! So for the third week in a row, she receives “The Outhouse Award”!
Next week is the last race of “NASCARGoesWest” when the haulers unload in Fontana, CA, about 50 miles East of Hollywood Hills of LA.
I will leave you with the classic philosophical words of Kenny Alphin and John Rich, aka Big and Rich:
It’s a 3 day drive if she drives all night
Says she’s leavin’ at the crack of dawn
Well she might still be lyin’ here with me
But in her heart she’s already gone
Already packed up, the Altima’s gassed up
She’s done put the map up there on the dash
I’m all tore up just tryin’ to man up
Damnin’ these tears up but can’t hold ’em back
TIL NEXT TIME, PULL YOUR GLOVES UP, FLIP YOUR VISOR DOWN, AND LET’S GO RACIN’!