Finally, the marathon that led up to the Chase has ended, and even during race day it seemed to be a never-ending saga.  The race began an hour late when Mother Nature decided to put plans on hold, and then after the green flag it wasn't halfway when she raised her hand again to stop the action.

It was a five-hour wait to finally get to see who would take the win.

After such a week where the Chase field had to take their photo on three different occasions, due to one driver taken out, another added in, and then one added at the last second, it only seemed appropriate that the first Chase event last an eternity.

But in the end, the top driver in the Chase was the one that ended up celebrating in victory lane.  It was a max-points day for Matt Kenseth, who now has a career-high six wins on the season thus far.  His points lead is now padded, and could likely be the one to beat in this year's title hunt.

The writers, well all decided to pick someone else besides Kenseth, but there was a lot of shuffling going on.  Here's where the writer's Chase stands after the GEICO 400:

 

Rob Tiongson (2048) Kevin Harvick finished 3rd (2)

Sal Sigala Jr. (2045) Kevin Harvick finished 3rd (1)

Kelly Crandall (2045) Kevin Harvick finished 3rd (1)

Michael Hirshbein (2044) Clint Bowyer finished 9th (3)

Misan Akuya (2042) Kevin Harvick finished 3rd (1)

Kara Martin (2042) Jeff Gordon finished 6th (1)

Dustin Parks (2040) Kurt Busch finished 4th (0)

James Broomhead (2038) Brad Keselowski finished 7th (2)

Patti Rodisch (2038) Brad Keselowski finished 7th (0)

Rob Blount (2035) Kasey Kahne finished 12th (1)

Ryan O'Hara (2032) Kasey Kahne finished 12th (0)

Billy Fellin (2029) Martin Truex Jr. finished 18th (1)

Christopher Leone (2000) NO PICK SENT (0)

 

Next Race:  It has been an extremely insane week in NASCAR, and thankfully it has come to a conclusion.  No one wants to experience another week like has just happened; the focus now needs to be solely on the Chase, and the 13-driver field that is going after a championship.

Up next on the schedule, a little bit of magic.  The New Hampshire Motor Speedway welcomes fans and drivers as the Chase continues.

Writers, remember you have to pick a new driver this time.  Have your picks in by Thursday, September 19, at 10 p.m. ET for the Sylvania 300.