Good News! Jimmie Johnson Did Not Win a Duel!

The bad news? Kyle Busch did …


Yes, Kyle Busch won the second of Thursday’s two Gatorade Duels at Daytona International Speedway, giving rise to the horrifying prospect that the little pipsqueak will replicate his 2008. But, there is a silver lining to this cloud, and that is that Jeff Gordon won the first of the Duels, sparing an innocent public from having to read at least 536 Gordon hasn’t won a race in 92 years stories in the next few months.

And, as good a story as Gordon’s win was, the better one was Scott Riggs’ sixth-place behind The Driver Formerly Known as The Kid. The 38-year-old former Gillett Evernham driver earned a spot in Sunday’s 500 driving for Tommy Baldwin Racingories that (TBR), a shoestring operation launched a few months ago by Baldwin, a former crew chief to drivers like Kasey Kahne and Ward Burton, among others.

TBR is one of the feel-good stories that NASCAR desperately needs this year, a one-car operation made up of volunteers and people who have been fired by other Cup teams since the end of 2008. By merely qualifying for Sunday’s race, Baldwin’s No. 36 team will earn at least $250,000, a pittance for the Hendricks, Roushes, and Childresses of the world, but a king’s ransom and enough to let TBR race another day.