The Good Sam 500 at Talladega is nearly 70 laps old, and - unsurprisingly - the story of the day has been the two-car tandem racing that took hold at the season-opening Daytona 500 and held through the other two restrictor plate races this year.
Some title contenders have decided to run near the rear of the field, such as point leader Carl Edwards and Jimmie Johnson, in need of a series of great finishes to renew his hopes of extending his championship string to six. Denny Hamlin had also been at the rear of the field without a drafting partner.
Kevin Harvick, Matt Kenseth, Tony Stewart, and Ryan Newman, meanwhile, have all spent time running near the front of the field. Kyle Busch had likewise run up front but barely dodged a bullet during the most recent cycle of pit stops when Trevor Bayne had to check up getting to pit road and Busch's partner, Joey Logano, bounced off Busch's Toyota and spun. Logano's left front tire later blew, drawing the caution flag.