It took seven races, but there is a third different driver atop the Atlanta Motor Speedway Power Rankings. On the heels of his first win of 2014, Joey Logano, a product of the Legends and Bandolero racing program at Atlanta Motor Speedway, now holds the top spot.
The rankings are determined by the top drivers in the NASCAR driver ratings in addition to five bonus points awarded for a race victory, three for a top-five finish and two for a top 10.
1. Joey Logano
(Last week: 4th)
The former Atlanta Motor Speedway Thursday Thunder driver moves to the top of the AMS Power Rankings this week, and his strong showings from week-to-week are a big reason why. He has placed no worse than fourth in seven races this year and has followed that effort up with his first win of the season.
2. Brad Keselowski
(Last week: 3rd)
Although it was spoiled by a late-race pit road speeding penalty, Keselowski's day at Texas spent near the front of the field was exactly what the No. 2 team needed after a forgetful race the week before at Martinsville.
3. Dale Earnhardt, Jr.
(Last week: 1st)
Earnhardt Jr. heads to Darlington seeking to rebound from his worst performance of the season, a 43rd-place finish at Texas after wrecking on the first green-flag lap.
4. Jeff Gordon
(Last week: 7th)
Another strong finish continues to help Gordon rise in the power rankings. That's an encouraging thing for the driver of the No. 24 who currently leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points standings and leads all drivers with an average finish of 7.4.
5. Kyle Busch
(Last week: 6th)
After managing one top-ten finish through the first four races, Busch is hitting his stride. He followed up his win at Fontana with a third-place finish last week. Busch's recent history at Darlington could bode well for the Las Vegas native. The driver of the No. 18 has finished seventh or better in the three of the past four races.
6. Jimmie Johnson
(Last week: 2nd)
One of two things seem to be happening to Jimmie Johnson in 2014. He either runs near the front of the field and has a very good chance to win or experiences bad fortune. He hit adversity head-on at Texas, sustaining damage from Earnhardt' Jr.'s first-lap accident. Darlington is one of 13 tracks that Johnson has at least three career victories at.
7. Carl Edwards
(Last week: 5th)
Edwards has slipped two positions after being fifth a week ago as the No. 99 team has a finish of no better than 10th in the last two races after the win at Bristol.
8. Matt Kenseth
(Last week: 8th)
Kenseth appears to be on the upswing. Not only does he have three top tens in a row, but each of those finishes are no worse than seventh.
9. Kevin Harvick
(Last week: 9th)
If it wasn't bad for luck, Kevin Harvick would have no luck at all. An engine failure relegated him to finish of 42nd at Texas. Harvick has experienced mechanical issues in all but one race this season. The only one that he didn't experience problems was at Phoenix, a race that he won.
10. Denny Hamlin
(Last week: Unranked)
Hamlin returns to the power rankings thanks to minimizing the hard times. His average finish of 8.7 ranks him fourth overall in that category.