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Daily Downforce: Biggest Championship CHOKES

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Joshua Lipowski

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A Championship is a great story, but a Championship choke can be just as interesting for fans to look back on. Some legends of the sport have let Championships slip away throughout history, but, what are the most memorable?

We look at:

  • Denny Hamlin: Denny Hamlin has failed to win a Championship, and there were two years he choked it away. In 2010, he blew a 33-point lead over the last two races thanks to running out of fuel at Phoenix and a terrible weekend at Homestead. In 2019, a poorly placed piece of grill tape caused Hamlin’s engine to overheat.
  • Kevin Harvick 2020: Kevin Harvick had a staggering 57 Playoff points heading into the 2020 Playoffs, but, what happened? Well, the Round of 8 was a complete disaster for Harvick thanks to things both within and out of his control.
  • Dale Earnhardt Jr 2004: A poorly timed slip-up in a post-race interview set Dale Earnhardt Jr. on a bad course throughout the final few races. He lost too many points over the final few races, but, how close did he really get?
  • Bill Elliott: Twice, Bill Elliott choked away sure Championships. In 1992, he blew a 154-point lead over the final 5 races launched by friction within the team started at Dover. In 1985, Elliott won 11 races, but, the end of the season was not as kind to him.

Championships are hard to win, and this list is proof of that. Did we miss any of the biggest Championship chokes in NASCAR?

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Picture of Joshua Lipowski

Joshua Lipowski

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