Roush Fenway Racing has 2 wins in the season’s first 7 races and holds the top two positions in points.
Michael Waltrip Racing is having an organization making season, having 2 cars in the top 10, and all three cars in the top 11 of owner points (the #55 has rotating drivers).
Greg Biffle, coming off a win at Texas Saturday night, is a strong bet at the similar Kansas race this weekend. His teammates Matt Kenseth and Carl Edwards have also run strong at the mile and a half, and Kansas specifically.
Downsizing to three teams for 2012, Roush has made somewhat of a comeback as a premier team in Cup. Many will disagree saying that they never fell off, with Edwards and Kenseth being title contenders last season. However, outside of those two they had some difficulties. Biffle finished 16th in points last season without a win, David Ragan finally broke into victory lane but finished 23rd in points. This year, so far, its Edwards who’s at the bottom of RFR – and he sits in 11th in points.
While Roush is expected to win, and is a failure if he doesn’t, MWR is still trying to prove its a legitimate team in NASCAR’s top ranks – Becoming the top Toyota team in the sport, passing JGR, would do just that. So far that’s what they’ve done.
The addition of Clint Bowyer seems to have done more than just bring a big name to the organization. By bringing over an RCR veteran, and his crew chief, MWR obtained a full-time driver with experience in a top tier team. Adding part-time driver Mark Martin, (Roush, Hendrick) brings in even more experience of success. Adding the third team and creating more opportunities to share information also probably helped the organization become more competitive.
Martin Truex Jr., who was chosen over David Reutimann to remain with the team after 2011 to make room for Martin, has used that motivation to prove he belongs. Having captured one pole and finishing in the top 10 in 5 of the 7 races so far, he sits 4th in points behind the Biffle, Kenseth, and surging Dale Jr..
Perhaps the greatest indicator of MWR’s competitiveness this season came at Bristol where unsigned driver Brian Vickers made a single start and ran in the top 5.
MWR will make their way into victory lane soon and probably multiple times this season, expect at least one of their cars in the Chase for the Cup.