2014 NASCAR World Cup Group E: Can Kurt Busch advance in a tough group?

Nick Bromberg
From The Marbles
Kurt Busch bests Johnson to win at Martinsville
Brad Keselowski (2) bumps Kurt Busch (41) as they enter Turn 1 during a NASCAR Sprint Cup auto race at Martinsville, Speedway, Sunday, March 30, 2014, in Martinsville, Va. The two drivers were involved in a pit road accident earlier in the race. (AP Photo/Mike McCarn)

Throughout the summer we're running our second NASCAR World Cup. Will Carl Edwards repeat? Or will someone else take the title? Click here for a NASCAR World Cup explanation and a list of all the groups.

Group E: Brad Keselowski (1 win, 5th in points), Clint Bowyer (16th, 0), Paul Menard (17th, 0), Kurt Busch (27th, 1)

Michigan Matchups: Keselowski vs. Menard, Bowyer vs. Busch

Sonoma Matchups: Keselowski vs. Busch, Bowyer vs. Menard

Kentucky Matchups: Keselowski vs. Bowyer, Menard vs. Busch

You can make a convincing case that this is a tougher group than Group D. It's going to come down to Kurt Busch. And the group could come down to the matchup between Busch and Keselowski at Sonoma. Busch is a previous Sonoma winner and Keselowski has proven himself to be no slouch on road courses, though he's been better at Watkins Glen than he has been at Sonoma.

However, Keselowski could survive the group even if Busch and team are on their game at Sonoma. The Penske cars have been incredibly fast at intermediate tracks, and he's got the edge over Menard and a slight edge over Bowyer. If Bowyer beats Busch in week one and takes care of Menard at Sonoma, Keselowski vs. Bowyer could decide the group. That is, of course, completely dependent on Busch's performance. 3-0 wouldn't be any more or less surprising than 0-3.

Projected standings: Keselowski 2-1, Bowyer 2-1, Busch 1-2, Menard 1-2

- - - - - - -

Nick Bromberg is the editor of From The Marbles on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!