The plan seemed to be in place, and the timing to put it into action seemed to be right.  But even the best laid plans can go awry.

White flag, Dale Earnhardt Jr. is in second, seemingly where he wanted to be to make his slingshot move, with help from Austin Dillon.  Out of turn 2, it looked like things were on the right track to make the pass, but Dillon then ran into trouble.  A bad bump from behind sent Dillon into the wall, and soon into the air.

Some fans wanted to see the two lead cars and the field make it to the checkered flag under green, just so the finish could at least be under green.  But officials then decided with the risk of damaging more cars, and with Dillon getting airborne, the yellow waved.  In a sense, many did survive Talladega, but one driver got to survive with a trophy.

McMurray made it to the finish, and got his first win of the season, and first in a long while.  This time, it was clear it meant more, as his family finally got to experience the thrill of a win alongside their dad.

That victory also gave one writer a big boost in the standings.  In fact, many writers survived this race pretty well in one piece, rather than getting caught up in a big wreck.

Here's where everyone stands after the Camping World RV Sales 500:

 

Rob Tiongson (2240) Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished 2nd (3)

Sal Sigala Jr. (2237) Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished 2nd (1)

Misan Akuya (2230) Jamie McMurray WON (3)

Rob Blount (2220) Clint Bowyer finished 10th (2)

Dustin Parks (2220) Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished 2nd (0)

Ryan O'Hara (2218) David Ragan finished 6th (1)

Kelly Crandall (2212) Kurt Busch finished 18th (1)

Billy Fellin (2211) Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished 2nd (2)

Patti Rodisch (2210) Kurt Busch finished 18th (0)

Kara Martin (2208) Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished 2nd (1)

James Broomhead (2174) Kurt Busch finished 18th (2)

Michael Hirshbein (2161) Carl Edwards finished 17th (3)

 

Next Race:  At Talladega, drivers are not as much in control as they are hoping to be.  It's relying on others to be where they expect them to be when making a move.  Next week, control goes back in the hands of the drivers.  In an aspect, the only control will be in the cars.  As for emotions and tempers, that may be different.

The track is completely different, with no restricted engines and no high banks.  Instead, it's NASCAR's version of rush hour traffic.  It's a trip to the shortest, tightest, and sometimes most headache-filled track on the circuit.

The amount of bent up fenders and body panels on the track likely will equal the amount of hot dogs fans will eat over the weekend.  Welcome to Martinsville, race No. 7 in the Chase.

Writers, your picks for the Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500 are due by 10 p.m. ET on Thursday, October 24.