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Ford has been in a rough position the last few seasons of NASCAR‘s top level. They struggled to run up front at times, and had been a one trick pony, with Team Penske being the dominant team. Roush Fenway Racing has been the matriarch for the Blue Ovals for decades, but went from 5 full-time teams (when that was still allowed) to only two drivers in 2017. Ford Performance responded to the downhill slide of Roush by adding Stewart-Hass Racing and their talented group of drivers and owners. 

All of those moves paid off early on at Daytona, with Kevin Harvick leading a good amount of the race and fellow SHR driver Kurt Busch winning the Great American race for Ford. It is their second 500 win in three years. Staying hot, Ford went to Atlanta and Kevin Harvick yet again led the most laps and had the dominant car by a wide margin. A late race speeding penalty put the California native to the back and manufacturer teammate Brad Keselowski took advantage, winning the second straight race for the company. 

Going into the weekend at Las Vegas, the Blue Ovals had their first opportunity to win three straight races to start their season, since 1992. As the race wore on, Brad Keselowski looked like he would grab that accomplishment and add his third win at Las Vegas in the last four seasons. Danica Patrick would put a halt to that, bringing out a late caution with a blown power unit. As the race went green, Brad Keselowski had issues and Toyota driver Martin Truex Jr. took home the victory. 

Though Ford has started out 2017 strong, with Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano leading the charge, and a Kurt Busch 500 win, they’re still behind Toyota. Yes, there are 5 Fords in the Top 10 in points, but it’s after three races. The media and fans shouldn’t jump to naming these drivers as championship favorites or naming Ford as the manufacturer championship favorite. The company is hot, but it’s only March.