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Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Greg Biffle's incredible run continues


Welcome to Tuesday. It's been a while since I've had a race to react off of, so I'd better make this good.

Unfortunately, the talk of the track coming off this weekend seems to be unhappiness with the racing. NASCAR is at a stark disadvantage compared to other major sports in that when the race isn't a classic, there's no other race to flip to.

Yeah, there wasn't a ton of slamming and amazing maneuvering Saturday night at Texas Motor Speedway, but race fans can appreciate the stamina showed by running high speeds for long green-flag stretches, and the ability it takes to get on and off pit road under green.

The man who did that better than the rest was Greg Biffle, who snapped a 49-race winless streak with the victory. And he kept up his incredible run this year, lowering his average finish to a tidy 6.0.

I know it's early, but no driver has run a full season and had an average finish that good since Jeff Gordon in his legendary 1998 season, when he had a 5.7. Before that, it was Dale Earnhardt in 1987.

Trivia break! Biffle's trying to be the first driver to win a Cup, Nationwide and Truck title. Who are the two other drivers to win two of the three?

Johnson and the Hendrick bunch

Jimmie Johnson finished second at Texas, the fourth time he's done that in the past five spring Texas races. But it was his most impressive effort.

Johnson had a 131.5 driver rating, his best mark there since NASCAR started tracking loop data for the 2005 season. It was better than any of those other runner-up efforts or his win.

Despite not picking up win No. 200, Hendrick Motorsports did put all four of its cars in the top 10 for the first time in over a year. But Hendrick is now winless in 13 straight Cup races for the first time since 2002-03.

Trivia break! How many races did it take for Rick Hendrick to pick up its first win?

Can-do Kahne

The weekend was pretty kind to Kasey Kahne.

First, a seventh-place finish in the Cup race, his first of the year. Then, a win from the rear of the field in Sunday's Camping World Truck Series race in NASCAR's return to Rockingham, Kahne's fourth win in five career Truck starts.

His Truck series win percentage of 80.0 is the best all time in any of the three NASCAR National Touring Series among drivers who have made at least five starts.

And it's by a very wide margin. The next best in the Truck series is Tony Stewart, who has won two of six races (33.3 percent). In Cup, it's road course specialist Dan Gurney, who won five of 16 starts (31.3 percent). In Nationwide, it's Sam Ard with 22 wins in 92 starts for a 23.9 percent mark.

Trivia break! Kahne finished second in the final Cup race at Rockingham. Who won the race?

Trivia break answers

1. Bobby Labonte won a Cup and Nationwide title. Johnny Benson won a Nationwide and Truck series title.

2. Hendrick needed only eight races to pick up win No. 1.

3. Matt Kenseth beat Kahne by .01 seconds in the last Cup race at Rockingham.