It's the ability to take a below-par car and still put it in the top three that truly shows a driver's capabilities, and Keselowski was duly rewarded with a boost in the Cup championship standings to 12th place. At this rate, he might not even have to rely on the wildcard entry to the Chase he would almost certainly be in line for with his two race wins of the year.
"I would like to make the top ten on our own merits if for no other reason than to push away all the naysayers of the wild card system, not to have to hear that," he said, but added that "I'm a big fan of the wild card ... I'd be proud either way to be in the Chase."
There's no such 'maybe' about Kyle Busch: his victory confirms him through to the Chase come what may, the first and so far only driver to have a firm Chase spot. Although his lead of 129pts over 11th-placed Clint Bowyer isn't quite enough to make it mathematically impossible for him to drop outside the top ten, his four wins means that even if he were to drop out of the top ten he would definitely qualify on the wildcard system.
In practice, Busch won't need the wildcard system to get him through to the Chase, and that means the four wins will instead be converted into bonus points when the standings are reset after Richmond on September 10. That puts him at least 3pts ahead of anyone else as things stand, which could prove a crucial advantage in that last ten-race shootout at the end of the year.
Full race results and positions