Posted: Tuesday April 17, 2012 11:13AM ; Updated: Tuesday April 17, 2012 11:35AM
Dustin Long
Dustin Long>NASCAR POWER RANKINGS
Texas Power Rankings

A day before his victory at Texas Motor Speedway, Greg Biffle was asked if he was surprised he hadn't won a NASCAR Sprint Cup race since 2010.

Biffle said that based on how he ran last year, no, and added: "Considering that we are only six [races] in this year, I am not too nervous about it yet. We get halfway through the season and we haven't won, then I will be."

He only had to wait a matter of hours for his first victory. His speedy run to the win also vaulted him back into the No. 1 spot in this week's Power Rankings:

 
1
Greg Biffle
2012 wins: 1
2012 Top-10s: 5
He ends his 49-race winless drought with his Texas victory and returns atop the Power Rankings by virtue of his effort and Tony Stewart's struggles. Biffle said that a few weeks ago he looked at Texas and Kansas as great opportunities for a win. Now, he's looking for two victories in a row.
 
2
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
2012 Wins: 0
2012 Top-10s: 5
He placed 10th at Texas and has not finished worse than 15th this season. Earnhardt just needs to win a race. If he continues to run as well as he has, his return to Victory Lane might not be far away. Maybe even this week?
 
3
Tony Stewart
2012 Wins: 2
2012 Top-10s: 3
He finished 24th in his backup car and wasn't a factor all weekend after damaging his primary car in practice. This was his worst performance of the season. At least at Phoenix when he finished 22nd, issues with the fuel injection system could be blamed.
 
4
Matt Kenseth
2012 Wins: 1
2012 Top-10s: 4
His fifth-place finish at Texas gives him four top-five finishes in the first seven races. Only points leader Greg Biffle can match that. With Kansas next -- where Kenseth has four top-10s in the last five races -- he could add to that total.
 
5
Jimmie Johnson
2012 Wins: 0
2012 Top-10s: 5
For the second race in a row he was in position to win late in the event and didn't. In years past these were the type of races Johnson won. Now, he has two wins in his last 51 starts. Still, he's placing in the top 10. He's been better on the 1.5-mile speedways, placing second at both Las Vegas and Texas. Next up is another 1.5-mile speedway in Kansas.
 
6
Martin Truex Jr.
2012 Wins: 0
2012 Top-10s: 5
His sixth-place finish at Texas marked his fourth consecutive top-10 finish. He placed third at Bristol, eighth at Auto Club Speedway and fifth at Martinsville before his Texas result. This team is showing staying power and the ability to put itself in position to win a race. Wouldn't be surprising to see him win in the near future.
 
7
Kevin Harvick
2012 Wins: 0
2012 Top-10s: 4
Looked like a contender for the win until a pit road problem cost him several spots and he couldn't make it through traffic. It didn't help that his car's handling went away later in the race. His cars have had speed, making him a threat at most places. He and his team just need to have a mistake-free race to return to Victory Lane.
 
8
Denny Hamlin
2012 Wins: 1
2012 Top-10s: 3
Hamlin tallied a respectable 12th-place finish at Texas. He's stated that even with the victory earlier this season he expected it would take some time for the team to consistently challenge for wins given the various offseason changes. Each race is a learning opportunity for this group, and it could be one to watch in the coming months.
 
9
Ryan Newman
2012 Wins: 1
2012 Top-10s: 3
It was a forgetful night for Newman at Texas. It was surprising how much the team struggled given that it finished fourth at Las Vegas (1.5 miles) and seventh at Auto Club Speedway (2 miles) earlier this season.
 
10
Andy Hillenburg (Rockingham owner)
2012 Wins: 1
2012 Attendance: 27,500
A former racer, Hillenburg purchased what was then called North Carolina Speedway (known as "The Rock") at auction in 2007 for more than $4 million. His efforts were rewarded Sunday when NASCAR returned to the track for the first time since a 2004 Cup race. This time it was the Camping World Truck Series. NASCAR estimated a crowd of 27,500 watched Kasey Kahne win. Reviving a track long thought dead and getting NASCAR to return, now that's Power.
 
 

 
SI.com
Hot Topics: NBA Draft Yasiel Puig NHL Playoffs NBA Playoffs Mark Cuban Jabari Parker
TM & © 2014 Time Inc. A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you. Read our privacy guidelines, your California privacy rights, and ad choices.
SI CoverRead All ArticlesBuy Cover Reprint