Monday, November 17, 2008

Weekend recap: Championship hardware dispersal edition

A triumphant and much needed period (.) can now be placed on 2008 NASCAR season. Exhale. Three titles were handed out in SoFLA, none of them went to "Hot" Carl Edwards, and as per norm, the most interesting racing of the weekend came from the Truck division.

Edwards led the most laps and won Sunday's Ford 400, but he still ended up 69-points adrift of Jimmie Johnson, who finished p15. As anyone who watched a college football game on ABC/ESPN over the weekend knows, this was Johnson's record-tying third straight Cup Series title. Cale Yarborough won the crown from 1976-1978.

It's tough to see where this title will stack up in the greater hierarchy of motor racing achievements. It's not our place to draw such conclusions. The pantheon of motor racing accomplishment is filled with successes. And one day after Johnson's hat trick is too soon to assign this feat a spot in history. Of course, some people disagree. Here's where the experts are stacking Johnson's titles. (Chuckles.)

The Way It Is/ Johnson joins the legends of NASCAR (Gordon Kirby)

Johnson wins third title in a row to match Yarborough (Sporting News Wire Service)

Johnson outsmarts competition to claim third straight Sprint Cup (Lars Anderson,

Three down and more to go? Johnson, 48 team, might just be getting started (Ed Hinton,

The same sort of deal happened on Saturday during the N'Wide race. In that Edwards won the race, but come up lame in the title. Clint Bowyer finished p5 to take that crown.

Edwards wins race, but Bowyer takes Nationwide Series title

13 years ago, Johnny Benson won a NASCAR title in the Busch Series. On Friday he notched title # 2 in NASCAR's #3 series. The points battle between Benson and Ron Hornday was the stuff of legends. Benson finished one spot ahead of Hornaday in Friday's race, and that gave him the seven point edge he needed to take the crown. Cheers to him and all of Bill Davis Racing.

Watch the final laps:

Benson holds off Hornaday to win Truck Series championship

There were really only two class titles on the line during Sunday's NHRA eliminations from Pomona. Pro Stock Bike and Funny Car is where the drama of sorts took place. When Tony Pedregon took out Robert Hight in round one, the FC title was secured for his older bro, Cruz. This is Cruz's second title, and his first in 16 years.

Eddie Krawiec won the Bike crown. Previously awarded champs were Tony Schumacher (TF) and Jeg Coughlin (PSC). Of course, there was a race to be run also... Event winners:

Larry Dixon (TF), Greg Anderson (PSC), Chris Rivas (PSB), Oh, and Cruz supplemented his championship with a race win. Good for him.

Pedregon adds win to championship; Dixon, Anderson, Rivas also score

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