Three things to watch
1 . Clint Bowyer won his first race with Michael Waltrip Racing one year ago at Sonoma and shows plenty of signs of a repeat, having one of the fastest cars so far this weekend.
2. Marcos Ambrose has won in both Sprint Cup and Nationwide at Watkins Glen but a win at Sonoma has eluded him. Hes still a threat every time he races here.
3 . All four Hendrick Motorsports drivers had their days cut short last weekend at Michigan. Surely, that wont be repeated this weekend?
Three picks for your fantasy team:
Clint Bowyer, Juan Pablo Montoya, Kyle Busch
Johnson: Michigan one of those days: Jimmie Johnson there wasnt any common denominators which took out all four Hendrick Motorsports drivers at Michigan last Sunday.
My tire issues seemed to be a little different than Kaseys (Kahne). Kaseys blew out. Mine, I think I ran something over the way it went down. It just got soft and then went flat, Johnson said.
The other two guys, (Dale Earnhardt) Jr. broke a motor. Nobody else did. And then Jeff (Gordon) got wrecked. It was just one of those days. We couldnt get out of Michigan fast enough.
The engine issue was Earnhardts second in the past four races. One was a piston issue and last weekends problem at Michigan was a bad valve spring.
Karsyn Elledge expands schedule: Karsyn Elledge, the granddaughter of the late Dale Earnhardt, is expanding her racing schedule to the West Coast.
Elledge, the 12-year-old daughter of Kelly Earnhardt Miller and Jimmy Elledge, will run races in mini-Outlaws sprint cars in California, Oregon and Montana this summer.
I will be competing at a much higher level of competition, Karsyn said. I like to race because its fun, not just because its my familys thing. I want to race Nationwide and Sprint Cup some day.
Does it matter?: While points accumulated on the two road courses certainly go towards a drivers ability to qualify for the Chase, is road course performance illustrative of predicting a champion? It doesnt appear so, at least in regards to Sonoma.
Seven of the 12 drivers who qualified for the 2012 Chase failed to finish in the Top 10 at the Sonoma race.