From the Marbles

2012 season in the rear view: David Ragan

Nick Bromberg
From The Marbles

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Is Waldo in the engine? (Getty)

The vitals: 28th in points. 0 wins, 1 top 5, 2 top 10s. 5 DNFs.

Moment to remember: Yeah, many people think that restrictor plate racing is a crapshoot, but given the team's performances, it seems pretty safe to say that plate racing has become Front Row Motorsports' strength. Much like his teammate first-name brother, David Ragan's best two efforts of the season came at Talladega, where he finished seventh in the spring and fourth in the fall. That fourth place finish came when somehow, some way, Ragan escaped from that final lap melee, battered race car and all, despite being the fourth car on the high line and in the thick of the accident.

And he also ran that awesome Where's Waldo car at Bristol.

Moment to forget: Much like the restrictor plate racing karma giveths, it also takes away. Maybe it was the deposit for the withdrawal that Ragan was to make at the final restrictor plate race of the season, but he was caught up in the crash on lap two of the Daytona 500 that ended the chances of Jimmie Johnson, Kurt Busch, Danica Patrick and others. Ragan finished 43rd.

The wrap: A year after scoring his first career win and eight top tens for Roush Fenway Racing, Ragan found himself out of a ride when sponsor UPS scaled back its NASCAR commitment and Jack Roush then went to three teams. Without many options, Ragan stayed in the Ford camp at Front Row, and ended up with an average finish in 2012 that was eight places lower than 2011 and completed the fewest laps of his Cup career.

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