2014 Season Review:
No. 7 Matt Kenseth
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Matt Kenseth's pit crew changes tires during a pit stop at Texas Motor Speedway in November.
While he failed to post a victory this past season, Matt Kenseth’s 2014 campaign featured a Chase berth and a top-ten point standings finish.
Kenseth stayed within the top-ten in points throughout the regular season, including a spot on top of the point standings after the spring Dover race.
With ten top-five finishes, including a second place effort at Atlanta Motor Speedway in September, and 16 top-ten finishes, Kenseth earned his tenth career Chase appearance in 11 seasons, including back-to-back with Joe Gibbs Racing.
“I feel great about my team, I've got a ton of confidence in the group,” Kenseth said in September at Richmond International Raceway on making the Chase. “They've been really great on pit road. I think Jason has been doing a great job this year, our preparation has been good, execution has been great, so I feel good about the company and the team and everything we can do. It's no secret we've just kind of been off on speed.”
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Matt Kenseth finds trouble at Dover International Speedway.
Kenseth survived the first two rounds of the Chase, including a brawl at Charlotte Motor Speedway with fellow driver Brad Keselowski, yet, failed to advance to the Championship Round with a third place finish at Phoenix International Raceway.
“From my side of it, I feel like we haven't necessarily performed at a championship level,” Kenseth said at Phoenix. “I think my team has in the pit stops and the strategy and the car prep and the morale, all that has been there, but we haven't had the speed in our race cars. To still be in it all the way to the second‑to‑last race was a good feeling to keep getting another shot.
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Matt Kenseth leads a pack of cars at Talladega Superspeedway.
Kenseth’s sixth place effort at Homestead-Miami Speedway enabled the driver to post seventh in points for 2014, the eleventh time in his career he posted a top-ten overall finish in the point standings.
2014 was Kenseth’s fourth straight season of double-digit top-five finishes, a personal record for the 42-year-old driver. Yet, the season also marked his first season without a win since 2010.
“I don't know that it's any more or less important to me than the other 35 races this year, really,” Kenseth said on a winless 2014. “That's what you show up and try to do every week. Obviously, the longer you go without a win, you know, I don't necessarily feel the pressure or anything like that, but, obviously, you think about it a little bit more.”