If any of the eight drivers still eligible to win NASCAR's 2014 Sprint Cup Series Championship had won last week at Martinsville, he would have locked into the final four drivers who will battle for the title in the final race of the year. But it didn't happen.

Last week's winner, Dale Earnhardt Jr., had already been eliminated from contention for this year's championship so his win last week meant that no driver automatically advanced to the Championship Round.

This week offers another chance at the Texas Motor Speedway for one of the eight eligible drivers to advance. Five of these eight drivers qualified in the top ten on Friday. Matt Kenseth won the pole and Jeff Gordon will start alongside of him on the front row for Sunday's race. Kevin Harvick rolls off 5th, with Ryan Newman starting 7th and Joey Logano 10th. Carl Edwards qualified 11th, Denny Hamlin 20th and Brad Keselowski 26th.

In today's first practice session for Sunday's race at Texas, Carl Edwards was the fastest over Jimmie Johnson and Tony Stewart. In the final "Happy Hour" practice session this afternoon, Jimmie Johnson was fastest ahead of Ryan Newman and Paul Menard. Here is the complete starting lineup for the AAA Texas 500.

In local racing, Devil's Bowl Speedway made a final attempt at running the Vermont Freedom and Unity 100 despite cold and damp weather. This third and final leg of the “Battle at the Bowl” dirt track series was captured by Adam Pierson. Derek Graham, Jack Gentile, Leon Gonyo and Johnny Scarborough rounded out the top five.


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