Just ahead of the Championship Race at Phoenix Raceway, NASCAR President Steve Phelps declared that he felt the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season featured "one of the best, if not the best, racing competition levels in the history of this sport." And after 36 races from Valentine's Day to Veteran's Day, he has very legitimate cause to say so.
The 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season was indeed one of the most remarkable in recent memory, as Kyle Larson's dominant season en route to the Championship was complemented by a high amount of parity and competition throughout the field. While Larson led all drivers with 10 wins, a total of 16 different drivers and eight different race teams visiting Victory Lane.
Of the 32 drivers that ran the entire season, 31 -- including the entire Top 30 in the final points standings -- earned at least one Top 10 finish. All drivers in the Top 30 led at least four laps during the year, and all drivers in the Top 12 led at least 100.
Larson's 10 wins were more than double the total won by the next-winningest drivers, as Martin Truex Jr. and Alex Bowman tied for the best of the rest with four wins. There were three first-time winners during the season, with Michael McDowell and Christopher Bell scoring their maiden wins at Daytona and Bubba Wallace scoring his first win at Talladega.
Here is a complete look at the final 2021 NASCAR Cup Series standings and where each driver finished.
2021 NASCAR Cup Series standings
- 1. #5 - Kyle Larson - 10 wins, 20 Top 5s, 26 Top 10s
- 2. #19 - Martin Truex Jr. - 4 wins, 13 Top 5s, 20 Top 10s
- 3. #11 - Denny Hamlin - 2 wins, 19 Top 5s, 25 Top 10s
- 4. #9 - Chase Elliott - 2 wins, 15 Top 5s, 21 Top 10s
- 5. #4 - Kevin Harvick - 10 Top 5s, 24 Top 10s
- 6. #2 - Brad Keselowski - 1 win, 10 Top 5s, 17 Top 10s
- 7. #12 - Ryan Blaney - 3 wins, 11 Top 5s, 20 Top 10s
- 8. #22 - Joey Logano - 1 win, 10 Top 5s, 19 Top 10s
- 9. #18 - Kyle Busch - 2 wins, 14 Top 5s, 22 Top 10s
- 10. #24 - William Byron - 1 win, 12 Top 5s, 20 Top 10s