Thursday, April 29, 2010 | 4:08 p.m.
The dark financial clouds over the Ford Motor Company are clearing, but the Ford Sprint Cup teams are struggling to find success this season.
Chevy, Dodge and Toyota have each taken the checkered flag in 2010. But the only Ford to cross the finish line first this year was Kasey Kahne’s. And that lone win came in the second Duel at Daytona leading up to the Daytona 500. That leaves Ford with no wins in a points race this season.
But not all is lost for the Ford camp. There’s still plenty of racing left this season. And the pairing of Matt Kenseth with crew chief Todd Parrott seems to have put some fire back into the No. 17 team. Kenseth has accomplished three top-five and six top-ten finishes this year. Everyone is expecting to see some serious improvement from this team with a veteran like Parrott calling the shots from the pit box.
Greg Biffle has two top-five and seven top-ten finishes, and Carl Edwards has four top-tens. Biffle is currently third in Sprint Cup points and Kenseth ranks fourth. These two drivers are making progress and I think we’ll see both of them in victory lane before this season is over.
Unfortunately, I can’t say that I expect much from the struggling Petty organization, especially now that Kasey Kahne has announced he will be leaving the organization in 2011. Although the team is putting its best face on the situation, Kahne’s looming departure will still be a distraction.
Ford does have a new engine that was used in all of the Roush Fenway cars for the first time at Talladega. The new engine didn’t seem to wow anyone at that track, but it may be too early to tell whether this new power plant will give the Ford cars an edge.
I’m not a big fan of seeing anyone dominate a sport because it makes things too predictable. Chevrolet has six wins this season. Hopefully the Ford teams can start visiting victory lane soon and keep the Chevys from owning the winner’s circle and from capturing the Sprint Cup for a fifth consecutive year.