Big Three go­ing strong en­ter­ing Michi­gan race

The Morning Journal (Lorain, OH) - - SPORTS - By Larry Lage

NASCAR’s Big 3 has essen­tially lapped the com­pe­ti­tion.

Kyle Busch, Kevin Har­vick and Mar­tin Truex Jr. have com­bined to win 16 of 22 races and haven’t al­lowed the field to win con­sec­u­tive races with points at stake this year. Of the other 56 driv­ers who have started a race, only Clint Bowyer has won twice.

That could po­ten­tially change Aug. 12 in the Con­sumers En­ergy 400 be­cause Chase El­liott won last week at Watkins Glen.

Chances are, though, one of the se­ries’ top three driv­ers will fin­ish first.

Busch and Truex drive a Toy­ota while Har­vick is in a Ford. Clearly, it helps to have one of those man­u­fac­tur­ers on your side this sea­son.

Toy­ota driv­ers have won 11 races and Ford has nine first-place fin­ishes.

“They got every­thing to­gether,” Ryan New­man, who drives the No. 31 Chevy, said on Aug. 11 af­ter prac­tice. “They’ve got great down­force, horse­power, tires. Driv­ers are do­ing their job and col­lec­tively their or­ga­ni­za­tions are strong.

“Ste­wart-Haas Rac­ing as well as the Toy­ota camp seems to be strong right now and have been all year.”

Chevro­let, mean­while, has won just two races and Kyle Lar­son, who is eighth in points, is its only driver among the top 10 in the stand­ings.

“We’re try­ing to catch up,” said New­man, who will start sixth. We were pre­pared as well as we thought we needed to be.

“As it turns out, we needed to be more pre­pared and you can see the re­sults across the Chevro­let camp.”

Some other things to know for the Cup race: when you have had some suc­cess to see how you will stack up when you load again,” Bowyer said.

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