- Kevin Harvick
It seems pretty obvious. Five wins in twelve races in 2018 is all but guaranteed to put you up at the top of the rankings.
- Joey Logano
A strong third-place run and top fives in both stages allowed Logano to keep his second-place points standings despite Harvick’s win. Logano has been a quiet contender all year, not dominating races, but staying near the front. He is locked in the playoffs through his win at Talladega.
- Kyle Busch
Kyle Busch is leading the points, but a drivetrain failure at Dover and a tenth-place run at Kansas mean he’s down in third. Of course, it’s all relative. Busch is still having a very impressive season, with three wins.
- Martin Truex Jr.
Truex is mired back in eighth in points due to some bad luck earlier in the season. A fourth-place in Dover and a near-win in Kansas have helped him up to fourth in the rankings, though.
- Brad Keselowski
Keselowski didn’t have a great showing in Kansas, finishing fourteenth, but he’s been strong all year, which is reflected in a fourth-place points standings.
- Kurt Busch
Busch is coming off top ten finishes at both Dover and Kansas, and sits fifth in the points. Like Logano, he hasn’t been dominant, but has stayed up front consistently, which has earned him this spot.
- Kyle Larson
Much like Truex, Larson hit a rough patch a few races back, but has recovered with top ten runs in the last pair of races. Larson dominated much of Saturday night’s race before a run-in with Ryan Blaney set him back. He recovered for a fourth-place finish.
- Denny Hamlin
Hamlin hasn’t had the speed that those above him have had, but he’s sitting seventh in points, and has an average finish just worse than tenth. Hamlin has finished 10 of the 12 races this season on the lead lap. It looks like consistency may be Hamlin’s strength this season.
- Aric Almirola
Almirola has been one of the pleasant surprises this season. His new ride with Stewart-Haas Racing has paid big dividends. With an average finish of 12.4, Almirola sits 11th in the points, and has improved even during the season. Almirola only has two finishes worse than 14th, and has been following his Stewart-Haas Racing teammates in their strong performances.
- Clint Bowyer
Speaking of Stewart-Haas Racing, Clint Bowyer was hot heading into Kansas after finishing second at Dover. A win was far from the agenda Saturday night, though, as Bowyer was taken out in William Byron’s huge wreck.