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Matt DiBenedetto tweeted Thursday evening, "I've decided to go in a different direction next year. Exciting announcements coming soon".

Impact

DiBenedetto had spent the last two seasons with BK Racing, and trying to push that small race team to greater heights. He made some headway last season and actually posted his first-career Top 10 in the spring Bristol race. DiBenedetto is very talented and will likely land in a similar, if not better, team situation for 2017.

Having his 2017 plans in place eases much concern but Chris Buescher, 16th in points for 2016, said there are "still a lot of moving pieces floating around", NASCAR.com reports.

Impact

The talented young driver is set to make the move from Front Row Motorsports to JTG Daugherty Racing's new team in 2017. Even though Buescher will be racing in a Chevrolet in the upcoming season, he's still under contract with the Ford camp of Roush Fenway Racing. It makes for an unusual situation, but still a great opportunity to develop as a driver in NASCAR's top division.

Casey Mears, who will be replaced in the No. 13 GEICO Chevy next season by Ty Dillon, tweeted Tuesday, "Thank you for all the support out there. Working on what's next. Having fun exploring all options and directions."

Impact

Mears is a 14-year veteran of NASCAR's top division, and he found himself out of a job at Germain Racing when they announced the hiring of Ty Dillon to drive the No. 13 Chevrolet next season. Mears hasn't cracked the Top 20 in the driver standings since the 2008 season, but he has close to 500 starts of Monster Energy Series experience. A veteran of his experience will have some appeal in this free agent driver market.

Stewart said his 2017 racing schedule is coming together, announcing two dates and hinting at other possibilities. Stewart, who has retired from driving in NASCAR but will compete in plenty of races in other series, talked about his 2017 schedule during Tuesday night's "Tony Stewart Live" on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, NBC Sports reports.

Impact

With NASCAR now in the rear-view mirror Stewart can focus on other forms of racing. Besides the usual Sprint Car action he enjoys, it looks like Smoke may be focused on some sports car racing. "There's a possibility I might have an offer to go race at Le Mans next year, which I never thought I would have an opportunity to do that," Stewart said. "I had a conversation with a car owner about possibly running this year's Rolex 24 at Daytona. There's a lot of cool stuff and the fun part is kind of not exactly knowing yet what we're going to do."

Chris Buescher will drive a second car for JTG Daugherty in 2017, NBC Sports reports.

Impact

The team made it official Tuesday. The talented young driver will move from Roush Fenway Racing to JTG Daugherty's new, second team. The expansion is made possible by JTG's lease of the Roush Feneway charter for Greg Biffle's now-idled No. 16 team. Buescher has incredible potential and will now get to explore that with a growing race team.

Landon Cassill will return to the Sprint Cup Series for Front Row Motorsports in 2017, frontstretch.com reports.

Impact

The young driver had his best campaign of his six-season Sprint Cup Series career in 2016. Cassill finished a career-best 29th in the driver standings and he racked up seven Top-20 finishes this season. Improvement has come slowly for the journeyman driver. However, Cassill and the No. 38 FRM team made some progress this year. He'll get another shot in 2017 to move the bar higher for this race team.

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Kyle Larson made the most of his return to midget racing, winning Thursday night's 76th running of the Turkey Night Grand Prix speedsport.com reports.

Impact

Larson didn't waste any time after the conclusion of the Sprint Cup Series season to get back into racing action. He claimed his second-career victory in this prestigious midget racing event. Larson held off a late rally from Brady Bacon to secure the win.

Greg Biffle's decision to leave Roush-Fenway Racing Monday triggered a chain reaction that will include the slumping racing company loaning driver Chris Buescher to a rival manufacturer next season. Buescher will drive for a newly-created second Chevy team at JTG Daughtery Racing in 2017, the Florida Times Union reports.

Impact

It is expected that Roush will fold the No. 16 team after Biffle's departure. That will leave no path forward for Buescher within that organization. It has not been officially announced yet, but it looks like the young talent could end up in a new, second team at JTG Daugherty Racing. JTG has not commented yet, but it would appear as though a deal and sponsorship are coming together for a second race team. Buescher is very talented and this could be a boost to both his career and this race team.

Roush Fenway Racing and driver Greg Biffle have parted ways after the conclusion of the 2016 NASCAR season. Biffle, the organization's longest-tenured driver, drove the No. 16 Sprint Cup Series entry since 2002, Roush Fenway Racing PR reports.

Impact

Biffle's incredibly long run at Roush Fenway Racing came to an end after Sunday's season finale at Homestead. Things have gone somewhat stagnant in the No. 16 team over the last couple seasons, so it was apparent that it was time to move on. In Biffle's 15 seasons of racing at NASCAR's top level he collected 19 victories and 175 Top-10 finishes with this race team. Future plans have not been announced for this veteran driver, but he did say that he was looking forward to opportunities in radio and television.

Carl Edwards crashed and finished 34th in the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway Sunday afternoon.

Impact

Edwards would come painfully close to winning his first Sprint Cup Series championship. He would lead 47 laps and show off the fastest car on the track in the second half of the event. A late restart would prove disastrous as Edwards would attempt a block too late on Joey Logano coming on the inside lane. The contact would send the No. 19 Toyota out of control and crashing hard into other cars. Edwards would see the championship slip through his fingers as he suffered the DNF. The Joe Gibbs Racing star finishes fourth in the final driver standings.

Joey Logano finished fourth in the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway Sunday afternoon.

Impact

The race for the championship would be an uphill battle for the No. 22 Ford team. Logano would only manage to lead 6 laps in the middle-stages of the race. The rest of the afternoon he would be in hot pursuit of Carl Edwards for the championship winning finish. Two late accidents would completely change the momentum of this race. Logano would be involved in one of those accidents as he and Edwards made contact. The Penske Racing star couldn't run down Jimmie Johnson on the final restart and would settle for his 16th Top 5 of the season. Logano finishes runner-up in the final driver standings as a result.

Kevin Harvick finished third in the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway Sunday afternoon.

Impact

It was a great performance for the No. 4 Stewart Haas Racing team. Harvick was looking to end the season on a high note, and that's exactly what he did. The veteran driver led 79 laps and set the pace early-on in this 400-mile race. Harvick would eventually cede the point to Joey Logano and then race further back in the Top 10 the rest of the evening. He would rally late thanks to two late cautions and restarts. Harvick would cross the stripe third at the checkered flag for his 17 Top 5 of the season. He ends the season eighth overall in the championship driver standings.

Kyle Larson finished second in the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway Sunday afternoon.

Impact

Larson wasn't in the championship picture, but he would dominate this season finale. The driver of the No. 42 Chevrolet led a race-high 132 laps and set the pace most of the afternoon at the South Florida oval. The more desperate drivers in the championship picture would force Larson from the lead late, but he would rally and cross the stripe second on the green-white-checkered finish. It was the Chip Ganassi Racing driver's 10th Top 5 of the season and he finishes ninth overall in the final driver standings.

By virtue of winning the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway Sunday afternoon, Jimmie Johnson was declared the 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion.

Impact

It would take NASCAR overtime to decide the winner of this race and championship. Carl Edwards and Joey Logano would collide on a late restart to set up overtime. Johnson would take advantage and zoom to the lead on the green flag. He would only need to lead the final 3 laps to hold off Logano to capture the victory and the title. It was Johnson's seventh Sprint Cup Series championship and that ties him with Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt Sr. for the most all-time.

Truex Jr. was fastest in Happy Hour practice for the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway Saturday afternoon. He turned a fast lap of 174.289 mph.

Impact

The Furniture Row Racing star found some missing speed in final practice and showed it off on his set of laps. Truex beat out Carl Edwards for the fastest lap of the session. The driver of the No. 78 Toyota has a chance to upstage the championship contenders in Sunday's Ford EcoBoost 400.

Jimmie Johnson was fastest in Saturday's first practice for the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. He turned a fast lap of 174.345 mph.

Impact

Johnson rebounded from a poor qualifying effort to have a great practice Saturday morning at the Homestead oval. The driver of the No. 48 Chevrolet edged Chase Elliott for the fastest lap of this 55-minute session. Johnson has a slugger's chance of winning Sunday's Ford EcoBoost 400 and claiming his seventh Sprint Cup Series championship.

Kevin Harvick won the pole for the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway Friday afternoon. He turned a fast lap of 177.737 mph.

Impact

Harvick picked up quite a bit of speed from practice and put it to good use during pole qualifying. He piloted the No. 4 Chevrolet to the top of the scoring pylon by beating out Brad Keselowski for the top starting spot. It was Harvick's second pole of the season and 17th of his career. He should crack the Top 5 in Sunday's Ford EcoBoost 400.

Kyle Larson was fastest in opening practice for the Ford EcoBoost 300 Xfinity Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway Friday afternoon. He turned a fast lap of 168.177 mph.

Impact

Larson drove the No. 42 Chevrolet to the top of the speed charts Friday in this first Xfinity Series practice. He beat out Ryan Blaney for the fastest lap of the 1.5-mile oval in South Florida. Larson has been very good on these intermediate ovals this season and looks to finish the season with a Top-5 finish in Saturday's 300-mile season finale.

Ryan Newman was fastest in opening practice for the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway Friday afternoon. He turned a fast lap of 175.387 mph.

Impact

Newman made his car much better over the course of this 85-minute session. He went out late and knocked Martin Truex Jr. from atop the scoring pylon with his 175+ mph lap. The Richard Childress Racing driver has been a strong performer at Homestead-Miami Speedway over the last three seasons. He should crack the Top 10 in Sunday's season finale.

NASCAR has announced penalties and warnings following the Can-Am 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway on November 13, 2016. Adam Stevens, the crew chief for Kyle Busch, was fined $10,000 for lug nut(s) not properly installed after the race, NASCAR PR reports.

Impact

That last pit stop for the No. 18 JGR team was pretty fast, in fact, too fast as the team left one or more lug nuts loose on the tire change. Busch was rewarded with a runner-up finish in the CAN-AM 500, but now his crew chief faces a pretty stiff fine. This has been one of the more reoccurring penalties of the season, and carries very little impact or fallout to the driver and team. Busch will move forward and challenge for the championship this weekend at Homestead.