Capsules for the top 20 drivers in the points standings and five additional drivers of note.
By Jerry Bonkowski and Bob Moore
48 JIMMIE JOHNSON, Chevrolet
Team: Hendrick Motorsports
WHERE HE STANDS: Jimmie Johnson remained in first place in the Sprint Cup standings for the second consecutive week. He leads Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Brad Keselowski, who are both tied for second place, by eight points each.
LAS VEGAS RECORD: 11 career starts, 4 wins, 5 top-5s, 6 top-10s, 0 poles. Best career finish: first in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2010. Finished second in this race last year.
LOOKING AHEAD: Even though it's one of his favorite and most successful tracks, Johnson still feels Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Tony Stewart owe him one, having come so close to winning in last season's race there, only to have it stolen away at the end by Stewart. Here are Johnson's thoughts about Sunday's race in Sin City: "We ran well all day (last year at Vegas). It was a competitive race and it was fun to race that hard with Tony at the end for a win. He was killing everyone all day on the restarts and he got me at the end. I hope we are in the same position again this weekend."
LOOKING BACK: Two races thus far in 2013 and you can't get much better, as Johnson won the season-opening Daytona 500 and finished second at Phoenix.
ETC.: Johnson has completed 99.9 percent (2,955) of the 2,958 laps completed in his 11 career starts at Las Vegas. His average start is 14.4 and average finish is an outstanding 9.8. He has 0 DNFs there.
88 DALE EARNHARDT JR., Chevrolet
Team: Hendrick Motorsports
WHERE HE STANDS: Dale Earnhardt Jr. is tied with Brad Keselowski for second in the Sprint Cup standings, eight points behind series leader Jimmie Johnson and four points ahead of Clint Bowyer and Denny Hamlin, who are tied for fourth.
LAS VEGAS RECORD: 13 career starts, 0 wins, 2 top-fives, 6 top-10s and 0 poles. Best career finish: second place in 2003. Finished 10th in this race last year.
LOOKING AHEAD: Earnhardt is off to a great start, having finished second in the season-opening Daytona 500, and coming back with a fifth-place finish at Phoenix. He's had mixed success at Las Vegas over the years, and admits it's one track that has vexed him when it comes to being in position to win there. Perhaps his luck may change there this Sunday?
LOOKING BACK: After finishing second in the season-opening Daytona 500, Earnhardt earned his second consecutive top-five with a fifth-place finish Sunday at Phoenix. Here's what Earnhardt had to say about this past Sunday's race: "That was a good run for us. I was a little disappointed because I think we could have won. And you hate to give away them points. And I'd love to get to Victory Lane. This is a good sign for us though that we've improved this much at Phoenix. Hopefully it's a sign for the rest of the season and that we're going to be all right."
ETC.: Earnhardt has completed 90.3 percent (3,045) of the 3,373 laps completed in his 13 starts at Las Vegas. His average start is 21.8 and average finish is 16.3. He also has 2 DNFs.
2 BRAD KESELOWSKI, Ford
Team: Penske Racing
WHERE HE STANDS: Brad Keselowski is tied with Dale Earnhardt Jr. for second in the Sprint Cup standings, eight points behind series leader Jimmie Johnson and four points ahead of Clint Bowyer and Denny Hamlin, who are tied for fourth.
LAS VEGAS RECORD: 4 career starts, 0 wins, 0 top-fives, 0 top-10s and 0 poles. Best career finish: 26th in 2010 and 2011. Finished 32nd in this race last year.
LOOKING AHEAD: Las Vegas Motor Speedway is without question one of Keselowski's worst race tracks on the Sprint Cup circuit. He's never finished better than 26th in his four career starts there. He's obviously looking to change his luck there this weekend. Will the fifth time be the charm?
LOOKING BACK: Keselowski has started the 2013 season with fourth-place finishes in both the season-opening Daytona 500 and again Sunday at Phoenix. Here's what Keselowski had to say after this past Sunday's race: "It's early in the season but I feel like there's a lot of passion and that's a good thing. I thought we had the car to win the race, but I could just never get that track position towards the end that we needed. If you could get to the lead, it looked like you had it covered, but it just wasn't meant to be."
ETC.: Keselowski has completed just 93.0 percent (1,010) of 1,086 laps completed in four career starts. His average start is 17.2 and average finish is a terrible 30.5. Still, he has zero DNFs at LVMS.
5 CLINT BOWYER, Toyota
Team: Michael Waltrip Racing