Race Recap: Michigan II

Kevin Harvick passes Tony Stewart during a restart while the field runs five-wide behind them. (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

My picks didn’t fare too well at Michigan on Sunday:

  1. Jimmie Johnson: The 48 was good early but began slipping back a little as the race progressed. Then, at least two slow pit stops put Johnson way back in the field, and he had a hard time recovering. And once again, the 48 team seemed to have trouble improving the car throughout the race. Johnson finished 12th.
  2. Greg Biffle: The 16 was very good most of the race and contended for the win. At the end, however, Biffle was just a bit too loose to take the checkered flag. He finished 4th.
  3. Jeff Burton: The 31 was pretty good much of the day, though more like a top-8 car than a contender to win. Alas, when Jeff Gordon suffered a flat tire late in the race, Burton blasted him from behind and seriously damaged his own car. He finished 24th.
  4. Kasey Kahne: The 9 was above average, but far slower than I expected. After the race, even Kahne said, “Something went wrong today.” He finished 14th.
  5. Kurt Busch: The Duece blew an engine at lap 30 and finished 40th.
  6. Tony Stewart: I thought the 14 would be strong, and he was. He was a contender for the win late, but at the end he didn’t quite have enough to run down the leaders.

Note: Pit tactics came into play Sunday during a late caution. Some teams took four tires, some took two and Denny Hamlin didn’t pit at all. He turned that track position into a 2nd place finish.