Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Introducing SAL ratings: Kyle Busch is the best

Who are the top speed demons on the track?

I am introducing Start-Adjust Leader Ratings,

Consider the following formula:

(Laps Led / Laps Raced) * Avg Start

displayed as a percentage. So leading a lap is worth more if you have to start further back. Nothing special in leading a lap after you already won the pole, especially if that pole was given to you because of a qualifying rainout.

That being said, consider all drivers with 10 more starts this year. Apply that formula and find these ratings.

I think these are appropriate. Clearly Kyle Busch this season was far and way the *fastest* driver on the race track when he was on the track. Notice some interesting points:

1) Brian Vickers, who was a real up-and-comer this year, often with a car to win.

2) The Gibbs cars of Hamlin and Stewart, they are 4th and 5th here, because they had great cars in many races, and were often factors to deal with, despite the high incidence of events out of their control which brought their overall season standings much lower.

3) Aric Almirola, who ran a part-time schedule but is ahead of many drivers on this ranking. SAL ratings suggest we look out for big things from him next year.

193 Kyle Busch
156 Jimmie Johnson
149 Carl Edwards
116 Denny Hamlin
105 Tony Stewart
97 Matt Kenseth
87 Dale Earnhardt, Jr.
61 Greg Biffle
50 Brian Vickers
47 Jeff Gordon
37 Clint Bowyer
33 Jamie McMurray
33 Kurt Busch
32 Aric Almirola
32 Kevin Harvick
29 Kasey Kahne
28 Jeff Burton
28 David Reutimann
20 Mark Martin
19 Casey Mears
11 Ryan Newman
10 Martin Truex, Jr.
7 Paul Menard
6 Michael Waltrip
4 David Ragan
4 Patrick Carpentier
4 Scott Riggs
4 Elliott Sadler
4 Travis Kvapil
3 Reed Sorenson
3 A.J. Allmendinger
3 Juan Pablo Montoya
2 Dave Blaney
2 Michael McDowell
1 Robby Gordon
1 Dario Franchitti
1 Bobby Labonte
1 David Gilliland
1 Joe Nemechek
1 J.J. Yeley
1 Sam Hornish, Jr.
1 Ken Schrader