SiriusXM NASCAR Radio’s Power Rankings

See host Pete Pistone’s latest ‘Power Rankings’ and listen to around-the-clock racing coverage on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Ch. 90).

Pete Pistone
September 14, 2021

RICHMOND, VIRGINIA – SEPTEMBER 11: Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #19 Bass Pro Shops Red White Blue Toyota, celebrates after winning the NASCAR Cup Series Federated Auto Parts 400 Salute to First Responders at Richmond Raceway on September 11, 2021 in Richmond, Virginia. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Pete Pistone is continuing to share his Power Rankings each week of the NASCAR season. Check out this week’s edition of NASCAR Power Rankings below, and listen to SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Ch. 90) on the SXM App now.

Here’s how Saturday night’s Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond Raceway impacted this week’s Power Rankings:

  1. Denny Hamlin  – He led 404 laps at Richmond in 2021 but finished second in both races (207 in April and 197 in September). Hamlin was once again the runner up Saturday night, trailing his JGR teammate Truex Jr. across the finish line.

Driver Rating: 109.2
Playoff Standings: 1st
Previous Ranking: 2nd

  1.    Martin Truex Jr. – His mastery of short tracks continued Saturday night as Truex Jr. scored his fourth win of the season and third at Richmond. He had to rebound from an opening lap penalty for beating the race leader to the start-finish line, but once he did, Truex Jr. flexed his muscles leading three times for 81 laps and earning a berth in Round Two of the Playoffs.

Driver Rating: 98.2
Playoff Standings: 2nd
Previous Ranking: 6th

  1. Kyle Larson – A sixth-place performance for Larson Saturday night at Richmond coming from the rear of the field after his car failed pre-race inspection twice. He’s finished top seven in six of the last seven races of 2021 and is locked into the next round on at least points.

Driver Rating: 110.5
Playoff Standings: 3rd
Previous Ranking: 1st

  1. Ryan Blaney – Admittedly not one of his best tracks, Blaney did an admirable job at Richmond on Saturday. He finished tenth, his first career top 10 at the track.

Driver Rating: 89.4
Playoff Standings: 5th
Previous Ranking: 3rd

  1.   Chase Elliott – The good news is Elliott led 58 laps on Saturday, more than in his prior 11 starts at Richmond combined and got his fourth Richmond top five. But a pit road mistake cost Elliott precious spots and he was forced to rebound from that issue.

Driver Rating: 100.5
Playoff Standings: 7th
Previous Ranking: 5th

  1. Joey Logano – More consistency of late for Logano and that was again on display at Richmond. He’s now finished top 10 in consecutive races for the first time since he was top 10 in both Pocono races back last summer.

Driver Rating: 96.0
Playoff Standings: 4th
Previous Ranking: 8th

  1. Kyle Busch – Another night of frustration for Busch, who led laps and was in contention until late when a pit road speeding penalty took him from the front of the field. Busch was left with a ninth-place Richmond finish.

Driver Rating: 97.8
Playoff Standings: 10th
Previous Ranking: 9th

  1. Ross Chastain – He has been a mainstay in the lead pack for weeks and that was the case again Saturday night in Richmond for the Chip Ganassi Racing driver. Chastain rebounded from a speeding penalty to get his eighth top-10 finish of 2021.

Driver Rating: 76.4
Point Standings: 19th
Previous Ranking: NR

  1. Kurt Busch – A disastrous night for Busch and his Playoff hopes. A tire issue on lap 40 sent Busch spinning and crashing hard into the first-turn wall, eliminating him from the race. He’ll be competing for his Playoff life this week at Bristol after his last-place Richmond finish.

Driver Rating: 81.7
Playoff Standings: 12th
Previous Ranking: 4th

  1. Kevin Harvick – A much better last several weeks for Harvick than the way the season began. He’s opening up the Playoffs with consistent finishes and posted an eighth Saturday night at Richmond.

Driver Rating: 89.6
Playoff Standings: 6th
Previous Ranking: NR


Dropped Out: Tyler Reddick, William Byron