It seems like the smoke has hardly settled and Tony “Smoke” Stewart was basking in his NASCAR championship not that long ago. And just like that, the Daytona 500 is upon us.
So the big question is who is the driver to beat this year. I thought I would throw out some names before the season started with some racing predictions.
First off, let’s talk about the reigning champ, Stewart. Tony kind of came out of nowhere last year, not that he was an unknown. But since entering the world as a driver/owner, he wasn’t getting the results we were used to seeing.
My first prediction for the 2012 season is he doesn’t repeat. In fact I’m going on record that he will not finish in the top 5.
Set to finish in fifth place will be Denny Hamlin. Denny will improve on his ninth place finish in 2011.
My second official prediction is that Jimmie Johnson will also not win the championship. He will fare better than last season, finishing 4th.
Your third place finisher will be Brad Keselowski. This young driver had a great breakout season last year and I only see him getting better.
My surprise pick of the 2012 season will be Jeff Gordon, who will finish second. It’s time for him to get back to his winning ways. If he doesn’t do it this season, we may never see him claim a championship again, or let alone challenge for one.
And the big man on campus, your 2012 NASCAR champion, back flipping his way to the main stage will be 2011 runner-up Carl Edwards. Carl was as good as anybody last season, except of course Stewart.
But this is his time, his season to shine, and his season to be the man!
Okay, now that I have that out of my system, here is the guy I want to win more than anybody, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Notice I didn’t even pick him to be in the top six. That’s because I may never be accurate at my predictions.
So go Dale Jr., you have a whole bunch of race fans pulling for you. After all, you are the most popular driver in NASCAR!